Last year was just a dress rehearsal, a beta test of sorts. For the second time, the Boston ad agency Mullen is using Twitter to monitor the buzz about Super Bowl advertising.
Mullen's 2009 effort, called "Trash Talk from Section Twitter," was partly an in-house exercise, a way for staffers, clients, and other marketing types to get familiar with Twitter and its potential as a marketing medium.
Now in an effort titled "BrandBowl 2010," Mullen is looking to go prime time. To that end, it is working with Radian6, a firm that seeks to give corporate clients such as Microsoft and Pepsi a "platform to listen, measure, and engage with your customers across the entire social web." (The image shown at right is from Mullen's website.)
With Radian6, Mullen believes it has devised a search-term and "word-cloud" strategy that can quickly comb the worldwide Twitter-sphere to find, catalogue, and sort Tweets that reference Super Bowl ads.
In essence, the end product promises to be a massive poll on the popularity of various Super Bowl ads in close to real time, Mullen's chief creative officer Edward Boches said.
The site went live around mid-day yesterday, and plans call for analyzing tweets through Monday, with final results expected to be posted some time then.
To Boches, tweets are bits of conversations as well as data points about a brand's perception, and he expects 80 percent of the Twitter conversation about Super Bowl ads to occur during the game or shortly thereafter.
Between the Internet and social media, TV ads can have an after-life long after they first air, and advertisers need to be aware of that fact, Boches said. (Almost half of Super Bowl viewers are expected to "rewatch" the big game's ads online, a recent poll from San Francisco ad agency Venables Bell & Partners found.)
If there's a gold medal for the Super Bowl ad that wins BrandBowl 2010, Boches isn't saying.
But there is a booby prize for the ad that the Twitterati deem to be the least popular: Free advice from Mullen on how to create a better ad.
"They may not want it," Boches said. "But we'll offer it anyway."