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Ram Is The Only Auto Brand To Create A Top-Ten Super Bowl Ad

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Plenty of websites and media firms rank Super Bowl ads -- in fact, we discussed several of them on Monday, the day after the big game. But when it comes to TV viewers and statistics, one authority carries more weight than nearly all of the others combined: Nielsen.

After the Super Bowl broadcast, Nielsen polled 6,750 Super Bowl watchers across the country, asking them two very different questions: which Super Bowl ads do you remember, and which Super Bowl ads did you like?

Doritos' humorous "Goat 4 Sale" clip took the #1 spot in both memorability and likability. Taco Bell's "Good Night, Mr. Goldblatt" also appeared on both lists, as did America's Milk Processors' "Got Milk" commercial featuring The Rock, Doritos' "Princess Fashion Show", and Tide's "Miracle Stain" (one of our faves of the comic bunch).

But despite a bevy of Super Bowl ads from automakers, the only one to appear on either list was the "God Made a Farmer" clip from Ram. In fact, it appeared on both lists: it ranked #6 in memorability and #9 in likability.

What's surprising about the Ram clip's performance is its utter simplicity. "God Made a Farmer" features archival audio from the late Paul Harvey, a series of stunning still images, and at the very end, a long look at a Ram pickup. There's no hard sell: it's all about branding, and it's done with sublime grace.

Of course, the ad's price tag wasn't so simple: at two minutes long, it could've cost Chrysler as much as $16 million to air.

What does the public's response to "God Made a Farmer" tell us? For starters, there's no substitute for creativity. And even in death, Paul Harvey still sells.

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Comments (6)
  1. Of those people polled, how many (correctly)connected brand and ad? That is a critical detail. If a commercial doesn't generate incremental sales then it has failed to do its job.
     
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  2. Nielsen doesn't offer specifics about the way the its questions were phrased, but I'd imagine that the ads toward the top of the list did a better job of making those brand/ad connections -- even Ram, which waited until the end of the two-minute clip to reveal itself in a significant way.

    That said, I'd argue that branding ads like "God Made a Farmer" are best measured, not by the sales they generate, but by the degree to which they build awareness among the general public and promote consideration.
     
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  3. Absolutely, that's the point. Since purchase begins with awareness and then consideration, it would be great to know how many people knew Ram was the product promoted in the "farmer" ad. A potential sale was lost for each person who didn't know it was an ad to promote Ram.
     
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  4. That RAM Truck ad was sheer genius. Much better than anything else, including the tear-jerker, horsey beer ad that InBev brought out which belies the scope of the American job loss that foreign owned Budweiser workers suffered. Made me think Ram stole A-B's ad impresario Bob Lachkey for it's production and creation.
     
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  5. This was an incredible ad.
    Beautiful, powerful words by Paul Harvey and stunning images. Well worth watching, again and again...
     
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  6. I absolutely loved the Ram SuperBowl spot. When I lived in Chicago, we always listened to Paul Harvey on the radio, usually when we were on the road to Lake Geneva or downtown or out and about elsewhere in the Illinois-Wisconsin-Minnesota countryside. Ram is to be commended for its creativity, appeal to our patriotism and work ethic and all-around good citizenship. This is an ad I'll never get tired of seeing. Bravo, Ram!
     
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