Super Bowl advertising revisited

Super Bowl advertising revisited

I had the pleasure to speak with several classes at Hartland Arrowhead High School on the advertisements that aired during this year’s Super Bowl.  Like many advertising professionals fortunate enough to get the chance to compare notes with students in this age group, I had some preconceived ideas on how they’d react to the ads.  Yet, I came away surprised and pleased with what I heard; just not for the reasons you might think.

I must admit I entered school believing the students wouldn’t like the same ads I did, and that we’d have differing opinions on criteria like message delivery, retention, branding and overall effectiveness. 

Their teacher had them well prepared, having given them insight into audience demographics, message targeting, and what she termed appeals and fallacies.  When I asked them which ad was most effective, their choices mirrored mine.  They even disliked the same ads as I, for many of the same reasons. 

So, instead of me going in and lecturing groups of high school students on the effectiveness of advertising, it was I who became educated and enlightened on how well they understood each advertiser’s intent.  Not because the students agreed with how I saw the ads, but because they seemed to understand the central message of each advertisement and didn’t react solely to those that were funny or cute. 

My congratulations to this teacher and her students for taking their assignment seriously and for thoughtfully sharing their opinions.

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