Mtn Dew’s Super Bowl ad stars John Cena and a $1 million bottle-counting contest
For brands shelling out more than $5 million for a 30-second Super Bowl ad, the challenge goes beyond catching attention during the game—the real payoff comes when marketers earn multiple views of their expensive ads. This year, Mtn Dew will try to pull that off by dangling $1 million in front of viewers as part of a contest plugged by John Cena.
The WWE star and actor will star in a 30-second in-game ad that challenges viewers to count the number of Mtn Dew Major Melon bottles appearing in the spot, which comes from TBWA\Chiat\Day New York. (The new watermelon flavored variety recently debuted.) The first person to tweet the correct number of bottles wins $1 million (subject to verification by the brand; viewers get three guesses each). Cena previews the ad in a video released today.
Update: The spot ran in the second quarter. See it above.
The brand in a press release stated the ad will include “hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of bottles,” while urging viewers to “watch the commercial closely” or “maybe even multiple times” for a chance to win. After the ad runs in the first half, Dew says it will post it on its social channels.
So, in essence, the brand is dangling the $1 million as a way to boost engagement during game day by driving people to its social channels to dissect the ad. Of course, the contest means the brand will not release the full spot early, which could rob it of some pregame views. But Dew is apparently betting that the game day stunt will ultimately drive more interest.
As for the ad itself, it will feature a pink-hued “Melontown,” where neon signs touting the brand’s Major Melon flavor adorn the storefronts—as evidenced by a teaser released on Jan. 26.
Nicole Portwood, VP of marketing for Mtn Dew, in a statement touted the ad by saying “we’re pushing creative boundaries in a way that puts fans at the core of the concept.”
Mtn Dew is the only PepsiCo beverage getting an in-game ad this year; Pepsi-Cola put all its investment behind its halftime sponsorship. The company’s Cheetos and Doritos brands will also run ads.
Find out how humor, inclusion and lockdowns played a role in how this year’s Super Bowl ads were created at Ad Age In-Depth: Super Bowl on Feb. 2. RSVP here.