How Creators & Brands Are Partnering For The Super Bowl

Edition #51

Happy Super Bowl weekend! Enjoy today’s read and the weekend festivities!

Today’s Edition:

  • A look at how brands are approaching the big game with creators

  • TikTok fights for advertising dollars from small businesses and creators with new Promote features

  • Instagram expands virtual gifting to all U.S. creators for short-form video

A Look At How Brands Are Approaching The Big Game With Creators

Charli D'Amelio's appearance in Sabra's 2020 Super Bowl commercial sparked speculation that brands would increasingly turn to digital creators instead of celebrities for their big game ad spots. Despite the hype surrounding the creator economy, few creators are expected to appear in TV spots this year. However, creators are still a big part of many brands’ advertising efforts for the year's biggest event.

Brands are utilizing various strategies for collaborating with creators this year, and a few campaigns stand out. These campaigns highlight the innovative ways that creators and brands can partner for the big game through traditional ad spots and social campaigns and what we can expect in the future.

Vibin With Tay x Doritos: #DoritosTriangleTryout

Doritos teamed up with TikTok star Tay Bloomer for a TikTok Hashtag Challenge, where he created a “triangle-inspired dance” and invited fans to recreate the dance for a chance to be featured in Doritos' Super Bowl ad. Bloomer and challenge winner Angelita Yadao-Payad will appear in the commercial along with Jack Harlow, Missy Elliot, Elton John, and others. Bloomer’s sponsored video has generated nearly 17 million views, while contest entry videos have accumulated a whopping 13 billion views.

This hybrid approach is for brands like Doritos, which still place a great value on Super Bowl commercials while recognizing the importance of social media. By tapping a TikTok star to lead a challenge, Doritos was able to drive a significant amount of user-generated content and create excitement for what will be its 42nd Super Bowl commercial. It also shows how brands can get their communities to participate through challenges that can provide consumers with once in lifetime opportunities.

Khaby Lame x State Farm: #StateFarmStadium Challenge

State Farm, which sponsors the stadium where the Super Bowl will be held, is forgoing a traditional ad spot again in favor of a TikTok-based campaign. Led by the most-followed TikToker, Khaby Lame and Jake from State Farm and supported by other creators like Spencer X, Michael Le, and McKenzi Brooke, State Farm is running the #StateFarmStadium Challenge. Viewers can enter for a chance to appear in one of Lame’s TikTok videos by guessing how many times State Farm Stadium will be mentioned during the FOX Super Bowl broadcast via a comment on Lame’s video. The campaign video has already accumulated over 185 million views, 985,000 likes, and 12,700 comments and is expected to see even more engagement before the challenge ends.

With 30-second Super Bowl spots going for as much as $7 million and more in production costs, many brands see the TV spots as a less-than-ideal investment, especially with today’s macroeconomic conditions. Plus, combining creators and platforms like TikTok can help them generate similar or even better reach at a much lower price. For brands to make an impact with these types of campaigns, partnering with creators who have a solid following is essential.

Logan Paul & KSI: PRIME

A creator-produced commercial will air during the Super Bowl for the first time. YouTubers Logan Paul and KSI will run an ad for PRIME, their beverage company that has become a viral sensation and generated $250 million in retail sales. The YouTubers have already raised significant awareness for PRIME through their channels and a recent partnership with UFC. However, the ad spot will allow them to reach a larger audience, especially those who may not constantly be on their phones.

Given the steep cost, it is unlikely that many creators will invest in airing their own commercials in the immediate future. There are probably less than a dozen creators with the fame, capital, and viable product where spending money on a Super Bowl commercial would make sense. In addition, today's most prominent creators usually have a strong following among Gen Z and millennials, making reaching them more cost-effective through social media than traditional ads. In the case of Paul and KSI, this is the opportunity to capture the attention of older generations, which can become new customers.

Can Creators Replace Celebrities?

Will creators eventually replace traditional celebrities in Super Bowl spots? It's possible, but it will take a while to get there. The Super Bowl audience is older, meaning that even though creators may be popular, many don’t have the same recognition or appeal across generations as mainstream celebrities such as professional athletes, actors, and models.

For now, brands will feature creators here and there but continue to save ad spots for celebrities to create big moments and maximize their share of voice during the game. At the same time, they will rely on creators heavily to reach the elusive Gen Z audience through social campaigns that lead up to and continue beyond the game. TikTok looks to be the platform of choice for such campaigns, but with the emergence of YouTube Shorts and YouTube's new partnership with the NFL for Sunday Ticket, YouTube is posed to play a more significant role in future games.

TikTok Fights For Advertising Dollars From Small Businesses & Creators With New Promote Features

TikTok is adding new features to Promote, which launched in November 2021. The tool allows users to turn organic videos into ads, helping them reach a bigger audience.

New Campaign Goals

TikTok is introducing two new campaign goals, More Profile Views, and More Messages. The former is designed to drive traffic to an advertiser's TikTok Page through a prominent call-to-action (CTA) button that, when clicked, brings users to the advertiser's profile.

The latter is intended to drive traffic to the advertiser's direct messages, allowing them to engage with potential customers. When viewers tap the ‘Send Message’ CTA button on these ads, it will populate a message composer. This is useful for businesses and creators pushing products or services and wanting to interact with audiences one-on-one.

Promote For Others

Advertisers can now use Promote to boost creator content through a new Promote for Others option. To do this, advertisers must first receive permission from the creators whose content they want to boost by sending a request via the Permissions option on the Promote Central page. Once approved, advertisers can promote the content as if it was their own, whether it's a video or a LIVE.

Spark Ads has established itself as a preferred method for brands to promote creator-generated content on TikTok. Expanding these capabilities to Promote provides advertisers with a more user-friendly and straightforward process, especially for one-off promotions. Besides utilizing the Promote tool for videos produced by creators they have already partnered with for sponsored content, advertisers also have the opportunity to seek permission and boost organic videos posted by creators.

Location Targeting

Lastly, Promote enables advertisers to target their audience based on location. This feature expands upon targeting options like age, gender, and interests. With location targeting, advertisers can display their ads to the closest audiences to their business, which is valuable for small businesses with physical locations. This increases their chances of reaching people more likely to visit their store.

More Accessible For Small Businesses & Creators

Promote simplifies the advertising process by being available directly in the TikTok app, allowing campaigns to be launched with just a few steps. This decreases the barrier to entry for advertisers like small businesses and creators who lack the knowledge, experience, or time needed to use TikTok Ads Manager for their advertising efforts. Promote offers an easier and more accessible solution for those in this category.

The Fight For Advertising Dollars From Small Businesses & Creators

TikTok's primary source of advertising revenue comes from large advertisers and agencies, but small businesses and creators represent a largely untapped market. Although the average advertising spend by small businesses and creators is typically lower, if TikTok can successfully attract this demographic to Promote, it can further bolster its pursuit of advertising revenue.

TikTok is not alone in its efforts to attract small businesses and creators to spend on advertising. Other platforms, such as Twitter, have introduced features to make it easier for users to boost their posts in-app. In addition, YouTube has started experimenting with a Promotions tab in YouTube Studio to simplify ad buying for creators, while Instagram has increased in-app notifications encouraging businesses to use its advertising capabilities.

More News

Instagram Expands Virtual Gifting To All U.S. Creators

Instagram expanded Gifts to all creators in the U.S. Initially launched in November, it allows fans to send virtual gifts to Reels creators to show their appreciation. To do so, users must purchase Stars, Instagram's virtual currency, and then send Gifts to creators through a 'Send Gift' button on eligible Reels. Instagram will do a revenue share with creators for the Gifts they receive monthly, equalling $0.1 USD for every Star. To receive a payout, creators must reach a $100 balance across monetization programs.

Instagram continues to build out its monetization features for Reels slowly. Adding to the Reels Play Bonus Program, more creators can make money off their short-form videos, this time directly through fan support. The revenue creators can generate from Gifts will depend on the uptake of Stars, as everyday social media users purchasing virtual currency and tipping creators is currently a rare practice in the U.S.

YouTube Makes Shorts Comment Stickers More Interactive

YouTube updated Comment Stickers for Shorts, enabling creators to create new Shorts in response to comments. Creators can do this by tapping the reply button next to a comment and then the Shorts icon, which will generate the comment as a sticker. They then can either record a new Short or upload an existing video. The Short will appear in the comments when published, and viewers can tap the Comment Sticker to see the original video.

These updates bring a more TikTok-like experience to Shorts, making it more dynamic and interactive for both creators and viewers. By being able to reply to comments with Shorts, creators have a simple way to engage with their audience and, at the same time, create new content. With the Shorts monetization program now available, many creators are actively creating Shorts to increase views and earn ad revenue. This updated feature presents a low-effort opportunity for creators to generate additional content and boost their ad earnings.

Twitch Helps Streamers Catch Up On Messages With Chat History

Twitch has begun rolling out Chat History for all creators. This feature allows creators to view the last 50 messages or the last hour of chat, whichever has fewer messages.

With fast-moving chats, Chat History provides an effortless way for creators to catch up on conversations before starting a stream, which can help shape the content of their streams. It also benefits viewers who join a stream late, as they can easily see the chat history and participant in the conversation. Combining this with its recent open letter to creators has Twitch making strides toward repairing its relationship with creators in 2023.

Acast’s New Study Finds 95% Of Podcast Listeners Take Action After Ad Exposure

According to a new study by Acast, 95% of frequent podcast listeners in the U.S. take action after hearing a podcast ad. This can include viewing the advertiser's website and social media, talking to friends and family about the advertiser, or making a purchase. The study also showed that 82% of listeners view podcast ads as a way to support their favorite podcasters. The same percentage of listeners also say that they follow a podcaster on social media.

This research highlights the effectiveness of podcast ads in driving results across the entire marketing funnel. Brands looking to raise awareness or drive conversions can benefit from partnering with podcast creators. With the recent increase in traditional creators launching podcasts, brands have the added opportunity to take a comprehensive approach to podcast advertising by having creators do ad heads and share sponsored content on social media.

What I’m Reading

  • Why Tabasco continues to go all in on influencer marketing (Marketing Brew)

  • 10 ways to partner with student-athlete creators (Mavrck)

  • It’s time for influencers to be real (Elle)