Super Bowl advertisers are pausing their marketing efforts in the wake of Kobe Bryant’s death.
At least several brands that intended to release their Big Game creative on Monday are holding back.
Procter & Gamble’s Olay, Pop-Tarts and Avocados From Mexico are among brands postponing their Super Bowl push following the death of the basketball legend and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, in a helicopter crash Sunday.
An Avocados From Mexico spokeswoman said the company delayed the release of the ad due to the news, while an Olay spokeswoman said it is postponing the full Super Bowl ad “due to the nature of the current news cycle.”
Mtn Dew had also planned to release its ad on NBC’s “Today” show on Monday, but the segment was postponed in light of the show’s coverage of Bryant.
While most Super Bowl creative isn't expected to be impacted, there's one brand that had to take a more serious look at how it plans to proceed on game day.
Planters—whose Super Bowl campaign centers around the death of its spokescharacter Mr. Peanut—plans to air a funeral for the fictional legume during the Big Game. Planters received some backlash on social media on Sunday, following the helicopter crash, for promoted tweets memorializing Mr. Peanut, who is being killed off in a car crash.
The company has since paused its online marketing campaign.
“We are saddened by this weekend’s news and Planters has paused all campaign activities, including paid media, and will evaluate next steps through a lens of sensitivity to those impacted by this tragedy,” the company said in a statement.
Planters and the Mr. Peanut character, whose social media accounts were switched to “The Estate of Mr. Peanut” following his fictional death last week, has not posted anything on social media since Friday. The brand’s plans involved the funeral planning. On Friday, for example, Ad Age received a devotional candle with an image of the Mr. Peanut character marking his “life” with the years 1916 to 2020.
There are no plans to change the Super Bowl spot, which will show a funeral for Mr. Peanut.
Contributing: E.J. Schultz