Super Bowl commercials are about to get a lot more social.
For years, the ultimate American sporting event has served as a peerless venue for a parade of multimillion-dollar, 30-second bursts of branding. Until recently, you'd never know from watching the ads on air how relentlessly social advertising was spreading online.
That changes this year. On Sunday, Super Bowl sponsors' hashtags are going to be as ubiquitous as the hash marks on the field.
For many marketers, the epiphany came during last year's 34-minute Superdome power outage early in the third-quarter showdown between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens. An alert marketing team promoting Nabisco's Oreo cookies fired off an inspired, now-famous tweet to loyal fans of the iconic snack.
"Power out? No problem. You can still dunk in the dark."
The 43-character message was retweeted 10,000 times in the first hour, picking up 18,000 likes and 5,000 shares on Facebook.
In social marketing circles, it was the tweet heard 'round the world