Microsoft earned top marks for its "Empowering" ad, winning the 10th
School Super Bowl Advertising Review. Other 2014 top-ranked
advertisers include Cheerios, Heinz, Volkswagen, Butterfinger and
Budweiser, while CarMax, SUBWAY and Audi ranked at the bottom.
"Microsoft not only led the ranking, it also embodied the inspirational
tone of many of the ads this year," said Tim
Calkins, Clinical Professor of Marketing at Kellogg School of
Management at Northwestern University. "This sentiment also was
reflected in the Cheerios and Heinz ads, both of which elicited the
basic good feelings consumers associate with the brands."
Audi finished at the bottom of the ranking, mainly because the ad
featured a somewhat disturbing dog character that overwhelmed the brand.
Other ads that fell flat include CarMax and SUBWAY; the CarMax ad was
slightly confusing and the SUBWAY spot didn't have the creativity
required to break through the clutter.
"Many advertisers this year used emotion in the Super Bowl spots," said Derek
D. Rucker, Sandy & Morton Goldman Professor of Entrepreneurial
Studies in Marketing at Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern
who also leads the Review. "In some cases, however, the creative idea
overshadowed the brand."
Unlike other popularity-based reviews, the Kellogg School Super Bowl
Advertising Review uses a strategic academic framework known as ADPLAN.
The acronym, developed by Kellogg School faculty, instructs viewers to
grade ads based on Attention, Distinction, Positioning, Linkage,
Amplification and Net equity.
"The ad series, such as Wonderful Pistachios and Bud Light, grabbed my
attention. I thought it was interesting to see how the ads built off one
another to tell a story and reinforce the brand and its message," added
Christine Fraser, one of the 50 Kellogg MBA students who participated in
the Ad Review panel.
A full list of the rankings is available here.
A forthcoming post-game video and infographic showcasing the Kellogg
School Super Bowl Ad Review results will be available here
on Monday, Feb. 3.
To learn more about the Kellogg School Super Bowl Advertising Review,
For more information about the Kellogg School of Management at
Northwestern University, visit www.kellogg.northwestern.edu.
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