It costs an impressive $4 million to buy a 30 second Super Bowl ad spot. It’s understandable that brands want to make the most of their investment. The ad has to be memorable, to tap into the zeitgeist, or just be funny. It needs to be talked about in the office, at home and online.
SodaStream used its ad ‘Game Changer’ to poke some fun at the two biggest brands in soft drinks. The ad was funny, made a good point, and has been banned (to be replaced by an ad free of rival brand names).
So, SodaStream posted the banned advert on YouTube, where it’s had more than 1.8 million views in 24 hours.
Not the first time…
Any adverts broadcast in the UK need to be approved by trade association Clearcast (which is funded by television companies). So when SodaStream tried to air a similar ad in December 2012, it was rejected for denigrating fizzy drinks companies (who, of course, spend a lot of money on TV ads – which I’m sure had nothing to do with the decision…) SodaStream is still trying to get the decision reversed.
Meanwhile, it launched a print campaign around censorship.
Brewing social media crisis
But there may be a fly in the social media ointment. SodaStream is pushing the environmentally friendly message hard, even sponsoring Climate Week 2013, and the publicity about the original Super Bowl ad being rejected is bringing out both social media friends and foes.
Calls are being made to boycott the brand for political reasons, and a competition has been set up to create a SodaStream Super Bowl ad spoof – hosted on the Boycott SodaStream YouTube channel of course. So far, the channel has had just over 2000 views, a fraction of the views gained in one day by the official banned ad. But it’s an on-going issue for the brand, and although it’s pretty low level at the moment – a few videos here, some tweets there, and a couple of comments on the official Facebook page –the buzz around the banned Super Bowl ad may just give the perfect opportunity for this protest to grow in strength.