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What Power Outage?

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superbowlThose of you watching the Super Bowl might have thought that the world quit turning for the 34 minutes that the lights were out.

Wrong-O TV watchers!

While CBS was scrambling to find live bodies to fill the air, the on-line world was making hay.

I've mentioned before how during the Olympics and the Presidential Debates, much of the TV-watching country was participating in real time from their laptops and tablets.

The same was true during the power outage.  While CBS fiddled, savvy corporate marketeers were using the opportunity to promote their brands.  Here are some examples:


Jennifer Rooney at Forbes writes about "How Advertisers Made The Super Bowl Power Outage Work For Them".  Here are some excerpts:

“We do carry candles,” Walgreens tweeted when the power went out at the Super Bowl. “We also sell lights.”

Oreo tweeted, “Power out? No problem,”posting an ad that finished, “You can still dunk in the dark.”

Audi took a direct hit at competitor and Superdome naming rights-holder Mercedes-Benzwith this tweet: “Sending some LEDs to the mbusa Superdome right now…”

What is particularly noteworthy to me is how these name brands didn't just respond to the outage, they were ready for something to respond to.

So, not only were many of the scheduled ads social-oriented - e.g. the Coke ad where public votes determined the outcome of the "race" - but the real-time marketing brains were prepared for whatever interesting event might take place.

Per Rooney's article - "What was nice about the power outage is everybody jumped on their mobile devices when the power went out and everybody started talking about the game but moreso about the ads, which was a positive development because it gave the early advertisers an even bigger impact,” (Tim) Calkins said. It’s a consequence of marketing’s speed that during the Super Bowl advertisers are creating new messages every few minutes."


We live in a brave new world where social media awareness becomes an important part of your business' messaging.


Scott is co-owner of Wave's End Services, LLC, a Colorado-based provider of Web, IT Consulting, photography, video, and training services.