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More Super Bowl marketers are releasing previews for their big-game ads. It may be an odd concept, essentially commercials for commercials, but with 30 seconds of Super Bowl airtime costing some $5 million this year, the spread of the tactic is understandable, too. As with real ads, though, the execution matters.
Squarespace's light-hearted teaser for its Super Bowl ad starring Keanu Reeves features Reeves on a motorcycle asking questions like "Should I be making motorcycles?" and getting answers from his image in the rearview mirror and the clouds. Reeves is apparently a long-time Squarespace customer, using the platform for his motorcycle business Arch. Last year, the company's Super Bowl ad starred John Malkovich trying to get JohnMalkovich.com back from a cybersquatter. It was preceded by a teaser before the game.
Avocados From Mexico has also revealed its first piece of creative backing its big game ad, featuring comedian Chris Elliott getting weird. (Ad Age will sit down with Kevin Hamilton, director of marketing, at Avocados From Mexico, for an upcoming special Super Bowl edition of the Ad Age Ad Lib podcast).
And PepsiCo used a second trailer for a Super Bowl stunt promoting both Doritos and Mtn Dew to add Missy Elliott and Busta Rhymes to the previously announced-and-teased endorsers Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage. It shows Freeman, Dinklage, Elliott and Rhymes practicing tongue twisters ahead of some kind of battle. (From the Super Bowl Ad Archive: Missy Elliott previously appeared in a 2016 Super Bowl commercial for Amazon Echo.)
For its part, non-Super Bowl advertiser Skittles has used a whopping four teasers to hype David Schwimmer as the star of its "secret" "Super Bowl ad," Jessica Wohl reports. The actor, best known for his role on "Friends," will appear in the commercial that Skittles says it will show during Super Bowl LII to a single fan, a teenager from Los Angeles. "I just thought it was really funny and inherently subversive," Schwimmer tells Wohl about the Super Bowl gimmick.
... and allegations
The internet is trying out a conspiracy theory about the trailer for a new "Crocodile Dundee" film starring Chris Hemsworth. The trailer dropped last week, but some are now speculating that it is all an elaborate ruse, part of a Super Bowl stunt for Tourism Australia.
Natty Light is essentially synonymous with sticky college bar floors and bad choices. Now the Anheuser-Bush InBev economy brand is giving something back to people who blew their money on beer in college—help with student loans. Natural Light will run a Super Bowl spot in 10 local markets to plug a new program in which it will give away $1 million to help people pay off college debt, E.J. Schultz reports.
Going very local
Schultz recently ventured to Super Bowl host Minneapolis for a look at how the city is combating its perception as frigid flyover territory. "Like a pick through ice, Minneapolis leaders are starting to chip away at the worn-out stereotypes that once defined this place while also embracing its cold-weather heritage," he writes.
Best (?) PR pitch
Ad Age gets plenty of out-there pitches during Super Bowl season, but this one from Bensussen Deutsch & Associates, a merchandise agency, is the most bizarre so far.
"This year's Super Bowl is sure to be a nippy one—and not just because Justin Timberlake is back as the halftime performer," the email starts, going on to offer a look at how BDA creates products for sporting events.