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The Ten Most Popular Commercials Before the Super Bowl Landed

The 10 Most-Recalled and Best-Liked Ads in January, According to Nielsen

By Nat Ives Published on .

NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- It's hard to remember now, but there was advertising on TV even before the Super Bowl.

Check out the best-liked commercial of January, according to Nielsen, in which a focus group of sharks report that a guy who'd just eaten a Snickers Peanut Butter Squared tasted better than the lady they devoured.

The spot that produced the most brand recall, though, was one from Diet Dr Pepper's ongoing "I Exist" campaign, proving that distinctive creative work combined with plenty of rotation can certainly leave an impression on consumers. A different commercial from the same campaign was January's eighth best-liked spot.

Nielsen Top Ten Most-Recalled New Ads, January 1, 2011 to January 31, 2011
Advertising Age Embedded Player
Brand Ad Description Recall Index
1 Diet Dr. Pepper At an "I exist" support group the easter bunny accidentally insults a unicorn after a leprechaun says the drink is satisfying (:15) 204
2 Diet Dr. Pepper At an "I exist" support group the easter bunny accidentally insults a unicorn after a leprechaun says the drink is satisfying (:30) 187
3 McDonald's Fruit & Maple Oatmeal -- A woman eats oatmeal and fresh fruit and there are close-up shots of the food (:15) 180
4 Allstate A man who represents a non-updated GPS directs a driver into an accident (:30) 179
5 McDonald's Fruit & Maple Oatmeal -- A woman eats oatmeal and fresh fruit and there are close-up shots of the food (:30) 177
6 Domino's Members of a focus group say they think the pizzas are made by machines; walls fall away to reveal hand-made pizzas (:30) 174
7 DirecTV Criminals cause chaos in a city, but a hero ignores his phone while watching his favorite TV shows (:30) 167
8 M&M's Pretzel -- Orange candy and Patrick Warburton sit on a couch; candy says "you are what you eat"; Warburton becomes candy (:30) 166
9 Domino's Members of a focus group say they think the pizzas are made by machines; walls fall away to reveal hand-made pizzas (:15) 164
10 Subway Laila Ali encourages viewers to start the year off right; two sandwiches are featured (:15) 163


Nielsen Top Ten Best-Liked New Ads, January 1, 2011 to January 31, 2011
Advertising Age Embedded Player
Brand Ad Description Likeability Index
1 Snickers Peanut Butter Squared -- Two sharks tell a woman that a certain person who had eaten a candy tasted better than another (:15) 194
2 Target Bread -- Boy eats peanut butter and jelly with his hands (:15) 190
3 G.E. Ecomagination -- Elephant dances to jazz music from the jungle to a desert and a science lab (:30) 188
4 M&M's Pretzel -- Orange candy and Patrick Warburton sit on a couch; candy says "you are what you eat"; Warburton becomes candy (:15) 166
5 Chevrolet Cruze -- Man cleans baby items out of his car; goes out at night with friends; stereo plays baby music (:30) 142
6 Allstate A man who represents snow lays atop a garage roof which collapses and damages a car (:30) 139
7 G.E. Ecomagination -- Auto mechanics and many other workers around the world dance to a country music song (:30) 138
8 Diet Dr. Pepper At an "I exist" support group, a leprechaun throws a cookie at Sasquatch for believeing that a drink has no calories (:30) 137
9 AT&T Song "Today was the Day" plays as orange flowers bloom across America (:30) 136
10 IHOP All You Can Eat Pancakes -- A voiceover explaining a deal is heard by restaurant guests (:15) 131

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