“Wow, this actually worked,” Reddit said in its Super Bowl-crashing ad from 2021. The inventive “Superb Owl” spot, created by R/GA, was only five seconds long and ran regionally in the middle of the game—yet it had a massive impact.
Reddit's powerful 5-second punch won Big Game attention
The ad flickered on the screen like a pirate transmission, and viewers had to pause the screen to read the message. Reddit said it didn’t have the money for a full 30-second Super Bowl commercial, yet it attracted eyeballs like the best of them, earning 6.5 billion impressions and coverage in more than 300 media outlets.
The platform took advantage of a huge moment following the rise of “Wall Street Bets,” its community of self-proclaimed amateur stock-pickers who invested in GameStop. Creativity Award jurors praised the campaign for its clever use of media within a tight framework and for its powerful punch in the broader context of advertising's biggest event of the year—a truly "Tiny But Mighty" move in the sea of blockbuster Big Game productions.