Keeping score with social media

Super Bowl XLVII was both a sporting and an advertising hurricane. Once again, it swept away all other major events in a culmination of athletic and capitalist achievement.

Each year, the event has sites buzzing with talk about who won in the advertising. This year was almost no exception.


The key difference is that everybody is looking for the social media “win”. And it appears to have come in the form of the Oreo ad which jumped on the blackout with an athleticism to rival that in the game.

The praise was as reactionary as the ad itself with the agency (360i) quickly explaining the genius behind the ad. Quick thinking and social media are a dangerous mix at the best of time but when it comes to judging advertising effectiveness (and reach) it seems outright absurd.

Sure, it set Twitter alight. 15.5k retweets is impressive and it was certainly impressive enough for many to crow about how it triumphed over “old media” but in all the back-slapping there is, as is often the case, a large blind spot when it comes to those numbers.

And it is a blind spot that pushes all those TV commercials, seen by many millions more than the Oreo ad. Despite how commentators will judge those ads from a creative point of view, it’s unlikely the investment will have been wasted. The Super Bowl has an estimated (global) viewing audience of over a billion people. As much as Twitter attracts the talking heads and gurus out there, statistically it is still a cheerleader to the main event.