Which brand 'won' the Super Bowl? No clear call from analytics firms

Brand tracking companies have differed over who 'won' the PR battle during last night's Super Bowl, but all pointed to Doritos, Hyundai and Budweiser being among the best at engaging the public and social media users.

Jonathan Stewart of the Carolina Panthers dives for a touchdown during the game (Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)
Jonathan Stewart of the Carolina Panthers dives for a touchdown during the game (Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)

Analytics firm iSpot.TV said the Super Bowl 50 game, in which the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers in California's Levi's Stadium last night, generated 476 million online video views and 5.8 million social actions associated with television advertising.

It declared Hyundai the top brand of the day, with 13 per cent of earned digital activity on Sunday, 130,000 social actions and more than eight million online views.

Mountain Dew placed second, with 12 per cent of all digital activity and 4.3 million views, followed by T-Mobile with 11 per cent, while Budweiser and Doritos made up the rest of its top five.

But the PR agency WE used its Brand Agility Index – which measures a range of metrics including relevance, scalability and originality – to arrive at a different conclusion and it placed Heinz first on 75 points, followed by T-Mobile on 73 points and then Audi, Doritos and Amazon.

Commenting on its findings, WE said Heinz was the clear winner because it was the most viewed and created the most engagement in terms of conversation volumes.  

Meanwhile, Brandwatch tracked social media platforms to arrive at yet another conclusion. It tracked mentions of brands during the four-hour time-frame of the match and crowned Doritos the winner, with 89,000 mentions, followed by Pepsi, with 38,000 mentions, while Pokemon, Mountain Dew and Budweiser made up the rest of the its top five.

The game saw an increased level of interest from the UK – according to Brandwatch data last week, it was the game's biggest market outside of the US and Canada – which was shown free to air on the BBC, and on Sky. The latter used the CBS broadcast of the game although different adverts were shown to viewers than would have been seen in the US, while the BBC was advertisement free as ever.

Claire Furlong is head of sport at UK agency Hanover, which has worked with the NFL for two years to build the game in the UK.

She said: "There is no doubt that the NFL is increasing in relevance to the UK sports market – recent research shows there are 13 million fans here. When we’re seeing pictures of George Osborne throwing a football around on Downing Street, it must be a sign that there’s appetite and interest at many levels."

Furlong also said a recent competition it launched with the NFL in the UK received 100,000 entrants within two weeks of launch. Jacques de Cock, a faculty member at London School of Marketing, said the game will have been watched in half of US households.

"The Super Bowl is a phenomenon unsurpassed in the world," he said."It is one of the few national social events, which is also why social media traffic during the game is so high. Over 285 million Facebook statuses are posted during the game; compared to that the 28 million tweets pales into insignificance.

"What is also remarkable is that advertising is not viewed as something to skip, but is seen by 77 per cent of viewers as part of the entertainment and therefore more watched and engaged with than any other television advertising during the year."

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