WASHINGTON: Pepsi's advertising saw the highest number of “meaningful” Twitter mentions during the Super Bowl, according to research conducted by Edelman subsidiary StrategyOne.
The study found that Pepsi's ads generated 18,371 Twitter conversations during the game. Steve Lombardo, CEO of StrategyOne, noted the research counted only tweets that mentioned the brand, the Super Bowl, and an ad or product.
“If you're going to create social media buzz about your brand, you have to think about what types of communications, messages, and creative, as well as any PR you do around those ads,” explained Lombardo. He added that most Super Bowl studies examine only ads, but StrategyOne attempted to look at “the brand in the context of the Super Bowl and in connection with the ad.”
In addition to capturing brand buzz numbers, the study suggested ad spending is not directly related to consumer conversations on social media, said Lombardo.
Pepsi spent about $7 million on Super Bowl ads, but generated nearly three times as many Twitter conversations as Anheuser-Busch, which spent about $31.5 million. PepsiCo is an Edelman client.
Lombardo predicted that brands will more often incorporate social media into their ads in the future by directing consumers to a Facebook page or asking them to tweet.
Melisa Tezanos, senior director of communications at PepsiCo, said the company focused on “driving the anticipation and the buzz” for the ads by engaging with consumers before the game and teasing the commercials. Pepsi representatives also appeared on Good Morning America and Today before the Super Bowl, and the company pitched entertainment media outlets such as The Hollywood Reporter and Access Hollywood.
“The consumers have a foundation or cultural context that's established by the earned media and the lead-up, so when they see the ad, it resonates more deeply with them because it's already been part of how they're thinking about the Super Bowl and anticipating it,” Tezanos explained.
Last year, Pepsi used the "Crash the Super Bowl" program, featuring consumer-generated ads for both the Dorito's and Pepsi Max brands. Four Pepsi ads during the 2011 Super Bowl made it into USAToday's top 10 ad meter slots, and the program saw a 50% increase in traditional and social media activity.