The Super Bowl plan played a role in generating Ulta’s interest, Dastmalchi said. And the game is also a social media opportunity that extends weeks, including the teaser featuring Cardi B, which had racked up 2.2 million views on YouTube alone in less than a week through Feb. 7.
“Social has always been at the center of how we activate, but we’re creating a full 360 moment to connect with our community,” said Denée Pearson, global brand president of NYX. “Social will be truly a pillar for us.”
Even with all the female audience growth and the Swift effect, it takes more to justify a Super Bowl media outlay, said Michael Kuremsky, branding consultant and former marketer on P&G’s Olay brand, who’s also visiting professor of branding at Xavier University.
“Being the unexpected brand in the game has a little talk value,” Kuremsky said. “The main reason for a brand to be there is as an anchor for a full-on holistic campaign, especially if you can engage retailers with driving volume and sales through their stores with special promotions and get influencers to amplify messaging. That’s where you can get ROI.”
And social strategies appear to be working so far, at least for NYX and e.l.f. As of last week, NYX ranked second in the top 10 category of pre-released Super Bowl ads and teasers on social media, including TikTok, as measured by Sprinklr. On X, NYX was the fifth most mentioned brand in the game, with e.l.f. right behind, according to Sprinklr.
E.l.f.’s social long game
It would be hard to question e.l.f.'s marketing or Super Bowl plans, given consistent strong double-digit growth since it advertised in the game last year. Just this week, e.l.f. posted an 85% sales increase for the fiscal third quarter, which ended Dec. 31.
While e.l.f. clearly saw strong results following last year’s program, it’s also put more planning into its social media strategy this year. That includes leveraging a big-budget lineup of talent that appears in the spot, including Judge Judy Sheindlin, Meghan Trainor, cast members of “Suits” and Heidi N Closet from “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” in a social campaign that will last for months after the game.
E.l.f.’s creative agency Shadow leaned heavily into the social media-driven renaissance of “Suits” by casting three of its stars in the TV spot—Gina Torres, Rick Hoffman and Sarah Rafferty—said Lisette Sand-Freedman, the agency’s co-founder and chief visionary officer.