My favorite Super Bowl ad: Colle + McVoy's Mike Caguin
Ahead of Super Bowl 51, The Drum has asked some of the industry’s most influential people to reflect on their favorite Super Bowl ad of all time and discuss why it stands out to them.
We’ve also asked them to give their thoughts on whether they think social media has helped or hurt the effectiveness of the coveted Super Bowl spot. Over the past few years, many brands have chosen to leverage the power of social media by teasing or releasing their Super Bowl spots online days before the game in hopes of garnering additional buzz and maximizing reach – but a good number of brands still prefer to take the traditional route of surprising viewers on game day.
Up until the Super Bowl, we’ll be featuring responses from agency founders, creatives and CEOs. Today we feature Colle + McVoy's chief creative officer Mike Caguin. Below, find out why Ram Truck’s 2013 spot “Farmer” is his favorite Super Bowl ad.
Colle + McVoy's chief creative officer Mike Caguin
What is your favorite Super Bowl ad of all time?
Isn’t it sacrilege to not reserve that distinction for Apple’s 1984? With that in mind, let’s talk about the second best Super Bowl ad of all time — or at least in recent memory. Now this is a tough one because let’s face it, there’s been a lot of great work over the years. But after mulling it over, I’ve narrowed it down to two of my absolute favorites. VW’s Little Darth and Ram’s God Made a Farmer, with a slight edge going to the latter.
Why did you love it? What made it stand out?
God Made a Farmer stopped me dead in my tracks because it ran completely counter to a stereotypical Super Bowl commercial. It didn’t feature celebrities, supermodels, superheroes, super weirdos, babies or animals. It didn’t rely on gimmicks, gratuitous explosions or humor. It didn’t lean on a famous song or require obscene production budgets. God Made a Farmer exercised impressive restraint. Heck, it didn’t even show a logo at the end. Most important, however, was that it celebrated effort, humility and commitment; values that most of us wish we saw a little more of in ourselves. I also love how it sincerely honored the very people who feed the world. Farmers are the hardest-working, most selfless people you could ever meet.
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In your opinion, was it ultimately a success for the brand?
Apparently it helped deliver the best sales in the month of February in six years, so it was definitely a success. But success on a stage as big as the Super Bowl isn’t just about communications metrics and business goals. Every advertiser strives to become immortalized in the minds of its viewers.
What do you hope to see from this year’s crop of Super Bowl ads?
I’d love nothing more than to be pleasantly surprised. I have a great deal of respect for the agencies and teams who are tasked with delivering for the Super Bowl. The bar is at its highest and there’s been some phenomenal work over the course of three decades. Doing something memorable is becoming harder and harder.
Social media has changed the way brands approach their Super Bowl advertising strategies. Do you think social media has helped or hurt the effectiveness of Super Bowl spots?
Social has the power to do both. Oreo’s Blackout tweet not only put the cookie prominently on the map instantly, it had every marketer and agency completely rethinking how it approached social media. And Volvo’s Greatest Interception idea from 2015 really stuck it to other car companies. Rather than spend millions on a commercial, it opted instead to give away Volvos on social media simply by having viewers include #VolvoContest in a tweet every time they saw another automaker’s ad during the game. Ingenious, really. Too bad I didn’t win one.
To read the other interviews in our series, click here.
To find out which brands are advertising in the Super Bowl this year, visit The Drum's dedicated page here.