I suffer from PTSBSS. Post Traumatic Super Bowl Stress Syndrome. I grew up in a household of men – three brothers and my dad. Super Bowl time was filled with tons of boys, having fun. Eventually they became men, screaming at the TV. I have fond memories of watching players as they got crushed while my mom made chili for the entire brood. For a while I was into it, hey if you can’t beat them join them. But, somewhere along the way, I just couldn’t do it anymore. This ritual just couldn’t hold my interest; it’s almost like nails on a chalkboard lately. Living in Hollywood affords us many opportunities to talk to friends who audition for Super Bowl commercials. Now that I’m a mom we go over to friends houses to watch the game while the kids play – or is it the other way around? Usually nothing about the game peaks my interests – except this year. As I was browsing around Facebook, because you know, I have nothing better to do, I’ve been browsing the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest as it’s been shared among my friends. This competition intrigued me. The more popular commercials feature kids, not just boys, girls are represented also. It was a change from commercials past with hot models in bikinis playing pool having a chip with crumbs falling into silicone-enhanced cleavage. Watching the top videos actually had me entertained, I laughed. It had me thinking about the changing demographic for the Super Bowl. It’s not just for dudes anymore.
One video in particular, “Middle Seat”, seemed less about dudes with chips and more about relationships with babies. I became aware of this commercial from another blogger – a writer/actor blogger with 5 kids of his own that wanted to be cast in the spot as “a hot young dad” (his words not mine). I reached out to the director of the piece, Scott Zabielski and asked him about the premise. Scott lives in Burbank, CA the mecca of suburbia in LA. His baby is featured in the spot. He said, “Super Bowl ads have to appeal to the broadest audience possible. Men, women, old and young.” Personally, the commercial resonated with me because in LA, there are so many hot moms who wouldn’t want to sit next to some dude. He added, “The main idea of this spot is one that everyone who’s flown can relate to – not wanting the wrong person (or anyone) to sit next to you on a plane.” Thinking about this statement helped me realize how no one wanted to sit by me when I was traveling in a plane with my baby. I always wore spit up on my blouse, accented with food in my hair. The point is, that moms in my day were not desirable the way they are today – MILFs are cool. However, I personally would sit next to a dude with a bag of Doritos. Who doesn’t want a yummy snack after a long day of baby-carrying?
I watched the other videos and I find the ones most appealing had the kids in them, usually a dad was also highlighted. I mean, sure, the screaming fish commercial was funny and who doesn’t want to see a Man Child having a tantrum whining for Doritos? Overall though, parents are now the preferred topic (over models) when it comes to brand equity. Hooray for us! Little girl lemonade stands trump bikinis by the pool. How cool is that? I’m kind of loving this change. Heck even Katy Perry is performing at half time. Who is better suited as the epitome of “Girl Power.” This is smart marketing that honors the changing demographic of society. I bet you next time we will have ethnic people in commercials. I give the NFL Super Bowl brands kudos for trying to lure a onetime Super Bowler back in with more mom and dad focused content. You might just win me over this year with my bag of Doritos.