After months of hype, previews, and rate runaround, advertising’s main stage was set for a competition like no other: the annual Superbowl. Commercials from the traditional advertisers such as Bud Light, E*Trade, Coca Cola, Doritos, Pepsi, GoDaddy.com, and various automobile companies proved that the use of humor is still alive and well in television sports-related advertising. But one unique commercial caught my attention and separated itself from the rest.
Chrysler’s Imported From Detroit commercial was serious, thought-provoking, relevant to current events, real, engaging, upfront, and honest. After seeing countless commercials, all created in a similar manner, touting similar car benefits, Chrysler recognized its reputation as a leading US auto manufacturer, located in the plagued city of Detroit. Despite the city’s deteriorating and economically distraught rep, Chrysler took these negative connotations and turned them positive, attributing hard work, perseverance, and sincerity to the city’s incomparable strength and character. With the inclusion of Eminem and his Academy Award winning song “Lose Yourself” in the commercial, viewers drew on the powerful messages sent through the film 8 Mile and associated them with Chrysler’s inspired mission, creating luxury vehicles with determination and conviction.
One of my favorite lines of copy from the ad:
“We’re from America, but this isn’t New York City, or The Windy City, or Sin City, and we’re certainly no one’s Emerald City. This is the Motor City. And this is what we do.”
Take a look:
Another set of commercials from a different advertiser grabbed my attention, but for a different reason. The Groupon commercials with Elizabeth Hurley and Timothy Hutton were confusing and a little offensive. Playing on the popular use of commercial advertising to draw empathy and financial donations for charitable causes, the Groupon commercials suggested that though the Tibetan culture and the Brazilian rain forest are in danger, it doesn’t matter since the consumer saved money on a meal at a Tibetan restaurant in Chicago or a bikini waxing at a NYC spa. In this way, Groupon’s first national television commercials portray their customers as selfish, conceited, and self-centered. Some viewers may have seen the unexpected plot switch of both commercials as funny, but I was left more confused than amused.
Take a look: