Resilient Chevy, Chrysler ads win at Super Bowl
By Lisa Richwine
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - General Motors scored with an Armageddon-proof Chevy truck while a Clint Eastwood pep talk for America won notice for rival Chrysler during the high-stakes brand battle at Sunday's Super Bowl.
Other commercials from companies such as Anheuser-Busch and Coca-Cola repeated old themes or failed to stand out during American TV's most valuable advertising time, according to industry experts and online comments.
Companies that spent $3.5 million on average for a 30-second spot ran commercials featuring comedy, celebrity and skin as the New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots in front of a TV audience estimated to reach about 100 million.
One GM ad that showed a Chevy Silverado truck surviving a 2012 Mayan end-of-the-world scenario won praise from marketing experts.
The spot "really stood out" among a heavy rotation of car commercials, said Tim Calkins, marketing professor at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, which runs a review of Super Bowl ads.
In the ad, the truck's driver looks for his friend, "Dave," but learns Dave, who drives a Ford, didn't make it.
A pre-game letter from a Ford attorney asked GM not to run the ad, arguing that insurance industry data show it is Ford, and not GM, that makes the safer pickup truck.