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With its first Super Bowl ad, Bumble set out to empower women both in front of and behind the camera. So it tapped tennis superstar Serena Williams and a team composed almost entirely of women to create the commercial, which aims to show women how they can make the first move in relationships and business.
"We wanted to give women the opportunity to work on a Super Bowl campaign – to produce, to edit, to create, to write scripts," Laura Hutfless, partner at FlyteVu Agency, Bumble's agency-of-record, says during a special Super Bowl edition of the Ad Lib podcast.
"As you know, in the advertising world the number of female creatives is far less than the number of males, especially when it comes to Super Bowl ads," she says. "So if we are going to create a Super Bowl ad targeting women, we needed to have women creating the script. Only women can understand women, so it just made natural sense to have this ad be created entirely by women."
With the ad, titled 'The Ball is in Her Court," Bumble was looking to feature a strong woman lead who is not positioned as overly sexualized, cast in a supporting role, or made to appear weak or funny and sarcastic.
Bumble didn't officially decide it would air a Super Bowl commercial until Thanksgiving Day, so the company had only had six weeks to execute the campaign.
The short time frame (many Super Bowl advertisers spend a year working on their ads) presented several problems, including terrible winds that deterred the shoot and President Donald Trump traveling to Palm Beach, Florida (where the spot was shot) forcing the film crew to ground their drones.