Vince Bond Jr.
Vince Bond Jr.
Reporter and Community Editor
VINCE BOND JR.

These auto brands scored big in the Super Bowl

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Who won the Super Bowl commercial war?

Apparently, luxury brands Maserati and Jaguar were victorious in their efforts to get the Ghibli and F-Type on consumers' radars.

The two companies used contrasting styles -- Maserati played on emotion, Jaguar relied on action-movie cinematics -- to persuade people to look them up moments after the spots aired.

AutoTrader.com tracked activity on its site during the game and found that Maserati's Ghibli commercial led to a 2,143 percent search lift for the vehicle the hour after the spot ran. In addition, searches for the Maserati brand jumped 385 percent.

Jaguar's F-Type also made a strong move as searches surged 1,460 percent, while Jaguar brand searches rose 208 percent.

Other notable Super Bowl gainers included the Audi A3 (379 percent increase in searches), Hyundai Genesis (373 percent), Toyota Highlander (84 percent) and Ford Fusion (81 percent).

Multifront effort

"While the strong performance of the exotic manufacturers was impressive, it's in a way more relevant to see which of the volume vehicles broke through," said Rick Wainschel, AutoTrader.com's vice president of automotive insights, in a statement. "Models like the A3, Genesis, Fusion and Highlander have a significant amount of competition and are on more consumers' shopping lists, so it means a bit more when they can stand out."

While TV is still the main Super Bowl commercial battlefield, it's increasingly becoming a multifront offensive that relies on social platforms to deepen the impact of the spots.

In the social age, people watch the commercials and immediately hop on social networks to praise or lambaste the outrageously expensive miniproductions. (The spots cost $8 million per minute to air during the Super Bowl).

Automakers seem to have no problem throwing their commercials into this hostile environment as several deployed promoted tweets to hammer home their messaging. Promoted tweets are premium posts that appear on people's timelines whether or not they follow those accounts.

Jeep, Maserati, Jaguar, Chrysler and Volkswagen all used promoted tweets to maximize their Super Bowl investments and continue the ad conversations on Twitter long after the spots aired, a Twitter spokeswoman wrote in an e-mail.

Jaguar's cocky promoted tweet, in particular, stood out as it played into its villainous #GoodToBeBad theme for the F-Type commercial. Jaguar also turned to Vine, a Twitter-owned smartphone video app, where it had a little fun with detergent company Tide to push the #GoodToBeBad hashtag.

Moving the chains

Data released today suggest that Hyundai's "Dad's Sixth Sense" spot garnered the most positive conversations.

The study, from public relations firm Lambert, Edwards & Associates and analytics firm Infegy, monitored 39.5 million conversations on more than 150 million blogs, forums and video/image sharing sites as well as Facebook and Twitter.

For Hyundai, 88 percent of the conversations about its commercial were positive. Jaguar's "Rendezvous" spot was next with 80 percent favorability, while Audi's "Doberhuahua" and Hyundai's "Nice" each had 78 percent favorability.

You can reach Vince Bond Jr. at vbond@crain.com. -- Follow Vince on Twitter

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