What would a College Super Bowl Commercial Look Like?

Maybe you saw Web ManagerRichwalsky’s post earlier this week about Google’s Super Bowl Ad and the local commercial for The University of Akron that me mentioned?  This got me thinking and let’s be honest, who doesn’t like to talk about Super Bowl Commercials?  This post doesn’t really have any practical purpose, but it’s fun to explore.  Like every year, there were some great Super Bowl ads and some lame ducks.  My personal favorite was the Hyundai Commercial with Brett Favre.  I don’t know why but the thought of Brett still playing in ten years was just hilarious.

Brett Favre Hyundai Sonata Commercial

If you are interested in seeing more super bowl commercials here are some resources:

  1. SPIKE.com Top 10 Super Bowl Commericals ofList
  2. Superbowl-commercials.org
  3. @TSand Super Bowl Ad for his local Fleet Farm

Higher Education Commercial

Getting back on track here, let’s assume that the commercial has to be a national commercial unlike the Akron one.  Meaning you are going to fork it up for the full audience.  This year’s Super Bowl was the most watched television show EVER hitting an estimated 106.5 million viewers.

Super Bowl commercials have to be cutting edge and usually funny.  If they aren’t funny then they must be really witty and smart, like the Google commercial.  The typical college commercial that you see during a Saturday college football game simply would not cut it.   How would you make a college come across as witty and humorous?  It would also have to be for a major school that had national brand.

If I were making a Super Bowl commercial for a college I would want to find famous alumni to do the commercial.  Preferably it would be someone who is funny like an actor or comedian.  Maybe a versatile athlete like Peyton Manning would work.  Speaking of Peyton, how great would it have been this year for the University of Tennessee, Peyton’s alma mater,  to use him in a commercial in his typical role as a humorous, innocent funny man!?  That could be an interesting angle.  Every player in the NFL went to college as there is a rule that you have to play three years of college ball before you are eligible for the draft (or something like that).  If your school has a player on one of the teams in the Super Bowl showing your pride could be a strong bond to establish.  Even after the game if you have a former student-athlete here is an opportunity to showcase your brand.

According to Wikipedia an average Super Bowl commercial this year cost just over $3 million.  We are just talking about the advertising fees, not the production costs!  With education in such tight budget situations across the board right now let’s hope that schools don’t see this as a “justified” expense.  I mean, how many quality web people could you afford to hire for that kind of money?  Talk about really being able to make a tangible web impact and ultimately marketing impact!

So what do you think?  What would your Super Bowl commercial for your school look like?

Before I finish this fun little post, I have to send a congratulations to my New Orleans Saints!  I have been a life long Saints and Sunday’s victory was a very special win.  If you are curious about my history as a Saints fan I wrote about that on my personal blog earlier this week.

9 Responses to “What would a College Super Bowl Commercial Look Like?”

  1. Says:

    Why not just buy the naming rights to the stadium that hosts the Super Bowl…


    Thanks for the link love. Fleet Farm FTW!

  2. Says:

    Since we are speaking of commercials - here is a mashup of one that has made the rounds in educational circles. You can see the original and the mashup by going to https://bit.ly/J7Z3r

    • Says:

      Thanks for sharing!

  3. Says:

    Fun post, though I can’t imagine how a fun college commercial would ever make it out of production unless maybe it were say…advertising sports teams. Those college ads most schools show during sporting events are super tame.

    I think a montage of photos showing people in college gear from baby to senior citizen with message could be fun, showing your school is always with or something.

    • Says:

      Your idea has inspired me. Read: I’m stealing it and making it my own. :)

    • Says:

      Ron, That is a really good point that I completely forgot about! There is NO way a fun, progressive commercial would even get through the whole committee that was assigned to come up with the whole thing in the first place. Because we all know something like this would have to go through a committee… if not a few committees. I guess that committee would also have to be formed today if they were planning to have a commercial ready for SB2011. Just sayin’ it’s the reality of the system…

  4. Says:

    If I was doing an ad for a college during the Superbowl I think the best route to go would be the unconventional one. Ron is right, humorous would be a hard sell to a college board, but something that takes a different angle would be gold. A good example would be focusing on student athletes who played at the school, but not as professionals, and exploring what they have done with their careers since graduating. This sends the message that your school offers a future for everyone, especially kids who aren’t good enough to be a sports pro. Because after all, that is your target market.

  5. Says:

    Founder- great blog. I agree, Superbowl commercials are very fun to chat about. It would be cool to see a university do a national TV spot, but as we all know, very few (if any) have the budget for it today.

    A great idea that has worked for several universities recently has been the spin off of the fan-produced ad done by Doritos a couple years ago. Hold a student contest to see who can create the best TV commercial - winning commercial gets aired locally or regionally during the commercial. Below is a link to a blog Ineke Caycedo wrote - halfway through, the blog discussions and shows the winning TV commercial for University of Michigan Flint’sSuperbowl ad contest. https://brandmanagersnotebook.wordpress.com/2009/01/19/make-great-impressions/

  6. Says:

    Your idea has inspired me. Read: I’m stealing it and making it my own.