As we’ve seen in this year’s exciting NFL postseason, its extremely challenging to get to the big game – the Super Bowl. It could be as simple as a young player filling in for the injured regular and turning the ball over or a seasoned veteran just flat-out missing a chip-shot field goal that keeps the team out of the championship. Those who have made it are in elite air and the same could be said about the commercials. There’s only a limited number of slots (thankfully) and the price gets steeper and steeper each year. Hulu’s AdZone returns again this year to showcase how strategic programming can celebrate those who have been there and enable brands to get extremely close at a fraction of the cost.
Hulu just launched Hulu AdZone 2012 as a platform to provide access to over 250 Super Bowl ads from years past and even preview some ads that will run in this year’s Bowl on the 5th of February. On the night of the game, fans will be able to view ads in an embeddable widget, rate them and share them across all social media channels – with a live leaderboard tracking results in real-time.
But here’s where things get interesting… Through sponsorships and partnerships, Hulu is able to generate even more cachet – and money – where they might not have been able to without a program built for this event. They also provide opportunities for a brand to effectively be a part of all of the Super Bowl spots.
You can see in the image above how Toyota secured persistent branding across the experience through their “Brought to you by” placement. So, even though they won’t hit the number of viewers the telecast will have, they will be there for everything from the old Apple “1984” spot through the Volkswagen Star Wars spots – and all other spots running during this year’s game. There is always a plan by the publishers to latch on to key cultural and sporting events to monetize them and Hulu built a strong product to do just that in an elegant way.
Helping Hulu to up the ante is in partnering with Advertising Age to editorialize groupings of “best ofs” over the years. Through this partnership, Hulu is able to bring their game to a higher level as a news – or at least curatorial – offering. AdAge also gains a platform to reach entertainment consumers who may not otherwise care about a trade publication – further spreading their brand recognition.
All in, this platform and others – like what YouTube and USA Today offers – provide defacto built-in long-tail benefits of placing ads in the Super Bowl. Unless, of course, the ad sucks. Those usually only live on for a few days, mired in a heap of negativity.
It is hard to get into the game as a player, advertiser or even a fan. Many try to get there or be associated in one form or another. Hulu seems to have found a great solution to check off and score on all of the above.