Posted January 22, 2015 4:11 pm by with 0 comments

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TVvsFBCan’t plunk down $4.5 million for a 30-second Super Bowl TV ad? Perhaps, I could interest you in a less expensive Facebook Super Bowl ad, instead.

Social media and Super Bowl go together like Budweiser and Doritos. In the lead up to the big game, there are millions of mentions on Facebook. People talk about the commercials, recipes for Super Bowl parties, and some even talk about the teams participating in this year’s game.

Facebook recently set up a special digital detector that will locate all of these mentions, then add the mentioners to a growing list of potential Super Bowl targets. And it’s all happening in real time so savvy marketers can take advantage of any sudden trends like a response to a Super Bowl power outage or a particularly scandalous Carls Jr. commercial.

TV might have more, highly engaged eyeballs but only social media has the ability to change direction on the fly and that’s important when you’re dealing with a live event.

What’s really intriguing about Facebook’s plan is that it delivers not only football fans, but more importantly, those one-Sunday a year fans who wouldn’t normally be paying attention. And since it’s already an option for Facebook advertisers, there’s still plenty of time to persuade those Super Bowl widows to read your book or go dress shopping while hubby watches the game.

Of course, all of this highly targeted advertising doesn’t come cheap. I doubt it will come in anywhere close to the cost of producing and airing a Super Bowl ad but it will likely be out of reach for your average, small business.

At least Facebook advertisers will be able to see (or not see) a direct uptick in business after buying an ad. You can’t say that for most Super Bowl ads. There have been at least eight companies who have folded since buying their Super Bowl ads. And for many more, the fame is fleeting. The even bigger question is this: have you ever bought anything as a direct result of a Super Bowl ad?

Whether or not the cost of a Super Bowl ad is worth it is highly debatable, so let’s go this way instead: instead of sinking all of your cash into a 30-second ad, you could have used that same budget to make a full-length movie. Doritos 8: Revenge of the Potato Chip.

What would you do with $4.5 million dollars?