It is reported that over a billion dollars was spent on this year's Super Bowl ads. Per AdAge.com, Fox was seeking $2.8 million and $3 million for 30 seconds of time during last night's Super Bowl XLV's game. Of all that money and the numerous ads, it only took a few minutes for the best advertisement to run. In my mind, the Audi commercial called "Release the hounds" was the best. To view it, click here.
Here are six reasons why Audi had the best ad and what advisors can learn from it.
Defined target market. A great marketing message has to first have an audience. Audi is clearly going for two target markets. The obvious segment is the rich that come from old money. Many high net worth individuals that inherited money might have been taught by their parents and social circles that other lines of cars were the best. This focus is evidenced in the commercial's line, "Nonsense--my father owned one." The second segment represents individuals of newer wealth that might be considering a luxury automobile for the first time.
Interestingly enough, of all the advertisements during this Super Bowl, this ad was directed at the groups most similar to who advisors look to find for new clients. A key take away for advisors is to clearly know their ideal client niche before trying to market to them.
Use of humor. The Super Bowl audience wants to be entertained. Just looking at the Hall of Fame of past commercials is proof the best ads usually deliver a laugh. I am not embarrassed to admit, I almost spit out a chicken wing when I heard the line, "Hit 'em with the Kenny G" and the music started playing. With that said, a laugh is only the starting point. Humor will work best if it is tied to a message so it becomes memorable, increasing brand awareness and possibly increasing sales.
In a relationship driven business, advisors can learn from this TV spot. Hopefully they realize they can be funny to enhance their brand personalities, making an even stronger connection with their prospects and clients.
Differentiator. If you have watched football games this season, you might not remember, but you have seen the thousands of pickup trucks ads. They brag about cargo room, horsepower, etc., which is a much more product-features related type of message. This Audi ad does no such thing. The ad takes a much more subtle approach to compare itself against the competition. It is not a feature they are selling, instead it is a benefit. The tale of this story is that if you buy an Audi you will no longer be locked up in the normal high-society life. This is even stated with a line that states "Escape the confines of old luxury."
Advisors, when crafting their marketing messages, often times are too product features focused. Their marketing should be delivering a feeling of trust and making a connection to initiate a new relationship, as opposed to trying to give a hard sell.
Meaningful tagline. One key way to get your brand message across is to effectively use a tagline. If done well, it is a very powerful marketing tool. Audi's "Luxury has progressed" message simply states that its cars have moved beyond the other high-end auto manufacturers.
To create a powerful tagline, advisors should figure out what their brand stands for, what are the brand strengths and how they are unique. Then they need to boil all that down into a short catchy phrase. The good thing is that taglines are relatively easy to update. Still, they should be given a chance to run their course for consistency and to develop unaided brand awareness and message recall (that is when a viewer actually remembers a brand and it's message on their own, without being given hints.)