Was It Worth $4 Million? Applying Social Media Sentiment

Was It Worth $4 Million? Applying Social Media Sentiment
By Asher Feldman, General Sentiment

Sure, Super Bowl XLVIII proved a less than exciting meeting between the Seahawks and Broncos. But despite the beat-down Seattle put on Denver, FOX’s broadcast was the most-watched television event in history.No wonder it cost advertisers during the Big Game an estimated $4 million per 30 seconds of advertising.

But was it worth it?

Using a combination of sentiment analysis, source analysis and overall volume metrics across social media and the social web, we can estimate whether this marketing truly was worth the $4 million paid for the ad slot, and the millions more spent on creating these blockbuster ads.

By measuring impact media value, a metric calculated by combining sentiment analysis and volume count tracking that creates a monetary value for social media chatter, from the Thursday before the Super Bowl to the Thursday after the Super Bowl, there are definite winners and losers.

Of the 54 Super Bowl advertisers tracked, only 15 were able to crack the $3-million barrier in media value during the time period. Granted, advertising’s goal is not necessarily to spark chatter, influencing buying decisions would be the ideal outcome of a Super Bowl ad, but no place is better for measuring impact of such a visible ad than on social media and the web.Microsoft was the Super Bowl period’s biggest winner, bringing down more than $32 million in impact media value during the seven-day stretch. Microsoft was also the winner of overall share of chatter during the Super Bowl, occupying more than 11 percent of the overall ad chatter on Feb. 2.

Coca-Cola’s controversial “America The Beautiful” ad has helped the brand’s exposure race to more than $13 million in earned media value in the days leading up to, during and after the Super Bowl.

Brands were not the only winners during the Super Bowl advertising window, however, as two upcoming movies, which aired 30-second spots, “Transformers: Age of Extinction” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” both pulled in around $5 million of earned exposure on the web after their quick trailers were aired.

Some of the less fortunate advertisers during the Super Bowl included much-hyped ads from SodaStream (less than $3 million earned), AXE (less than $2 million) and Oikos (less than $1 million).

These numbers far from determine what these actual properties can expect when calculating the bottom line and measuring a return on investment. But when companies make the call to spend millions of dollars on a quick spot during the Super Bowl, media value can be a useful indicator of success or failure, and a good way to figure out if the highly visible but short lived investment was worth it in the end.

Asher Feldman is an analyst at General Sentiment, a Long Island, N.Y.-based social media analytics firm. Find them on Twitter @gensent and online at generalsentiment.com.