Late run by Esurance to snatch Superbrand Super Bowl

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The battle of the brands at the Super Bowl is always as hard fought as the game itself. This year was tougher than ever with the big names taking the competition to social media before, during and after the game.

According to Twitter, this year’s Super Bowl Final generated 24.9 million tweets, with hashtags mentioned in 57% of Super Bowl ads. The advertising battle started early, with 30 official Super Bowl ads online by Friday 21 January.

With so many different strategies in play, ranging from ads featuring puppies and deer to massive prizes, we wanted to see how the integrated TV and social campaigns would translate into community growth. We monitored the Twitter feeds of this year’s top advertisers to create our Super Bowl XLVIII league table.

And the winner is…

At first glance, the results are surprising. In pole position, an insurance provider whose Twitter feed had fewer than 10,000 followers prior to the game.

In the hours following Sunday’s match, Esurance increased its follower count by an astonishing 710% and netted over 200,000 mentions on Twitter within one minute. Realising the value of social, Esurance’s savvy marketing team decided not to advertise on television during the game. Instead, it booked the first commercial slot after the final whistle, used it to announce a Twitter sweepstake with a prize of $1.5 million (the money saved by not advertising in-play) and watched the mentions of its hashtag roll in.

With the generous prize garner major news coverage and users were given 36 hours to tweet their entry, Esurance was able to massively increase the reach and longevity of its Super Bowl marketing spend.

At time of writing, the tweets were still coming through thick and fast, with the total number now sitting above two million. While Esurance will have to work hard to hold on to its new followers, this is a great example of a truly integrated campaign and well worthy of our Super Bowl crown.

Budweiser followed Esurance in second place, with a 22% increase in followers (+8000 users) thanks to its adorable #PuppyLove campaign. While it’s great to be innovative on Twitter, Budweiser shows that it’s worth remembering that the old tricks still work. People love animals and people will share content featuring animals.

Other top campaigns included Chevrolet’s Truck and Buck romance theme which helped it gain an additional 2258 followers, and David Beckham’s #uncovered spot for H&M which won 8827 new fans on Twitter.

Better luck next year

Confectionery brand M&Ms was at the less successful end of the spectrum in terms of community growth. Despite securing almost 10% of all Super Bowl related Twitter mentions in the run up to the game and getting a lot of buzz for its above the line advertising, it welcomed only 58 new followers to its @MyMMscom account – an increase of just 0.4%.

We’d love to hear which brands grabbed your attention at this year’s Super Bowl. And what should Esurance do to make sure it capitalises on its increased Twitter following? Let us know in the comments section below.