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What it takes to be a top 10 Super Bowl ad of all time


By Adam Flomenbaum | Co-Executive Editor

January 11, 2016 | 3 min read

Marketers attempting to create memorable Super Bowl ads, here’s a trick: feature animals and children and you’ve two of the most common elements featured in ads that most resonate with viewers.

This is according to a poll recently conducted by TiVo using Vision Critical, a customer intelligence platform provider, which sought to determine the top 10 Super Bowl commercials of the last 50 years.

Budweiser’s “Puppy Love” (2015) and “Lost Dog” (2014) ranked the highest across both men and women, and across three different age groups (18-34, 35-54, and 55+)

Looking at the broader top 10, commercials featuring children and/or animals perform “best,” delivering the strongest likeability across all age demographics and genders. “Based on TiVo’s data, the most successful commercials are timeless and not relying on timely pop culture moments” Tara Maitra, TiVo’s senior vice president, general manager content & media sales, tells Found Remote. “The most successful ones focus on themes broad audiences can appreciate such as children and family pets.”

Another interesting result is that only one of the top 10 ads aired before the 2000s (Coca-Cola’s “Mean Joe Greene:”) – showing either short term memory loss on the part of viewers or better creative from agencies. Then again, “Mean Joe Greene” did feature a child.

Below, an infographic highlighting more of the research results, followed by the top 10 Super Bowl ads according to TiVo’s poll:

1. Budweiser: Puppy Love

2. Budweiser: Lost Dog

3. Volkswagen Passat: The Force

4. Coca-Cola: Mean Joe Greene

5. Doritos Nacho Cheese: Sling Baby

6. Budweiser: 9-11

7. Snickers: You're Not You…

8. Doritos: Pug Attack

9. Doritos: Cowboy Kid

10. Budweiser: Designated Driver

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