What you can learn from targeted marketing tactics at the Super Bowl

The noisiest Sunday of the year has become less about advertisers solely relying on that 30 second TV spot to drive new leads and more about target practice.

Targeted marketing through social media channels is heating up at the Super Bowl this year, and looks like it’s sticking around for 2015.

Targeted marketing is here to stay

In a recent article about 2015 digital marketing tactics, Forbes writes how “marketing campaigns will be more data-driven & more hyper-targeted”. They quote the CEO of GetApp noting that “only 10% of online visitors find what they are looking for when interacting with online content. Savvy digital marketers will be able to match traffic with business attributes, identify segments they want to grow and serve them with a very targeted message”.

Wait, Super Bowl coverage is starting at 9 am for a 4pm gametime?

Ohhh yeah. Are you also confused about what all this targeted marketing talk has to do with the Super Bowl? Here’s an example for you. A luxury car company, rather than just blasting their message for all to see in hopes of filtering out those they want, can now also take part in a much more ‘honed in’ effort by partnering with a company like Facebook. This buddy-system ensures that that woman who just saw a car commercial and posts a status wishing she had a new car is suddenly seeing that advertiser’s newest model on her newsfeed throughout the game. And if she posts about a certain colour…well you get the idea.

What many may not realize this Sunday is that the fight for attention is happening just as much off the TV as on it. Adweek writes “Facebook is giving brands new ways to reach Super Bowl fans, breaking them into targeted groups and delivering tailor-made ads based on their profiles (anonymously, it says, of course)”. Why is Facebook pushing for brand’s ad dollars this year? According to Adweek, “last year, tools to aim ads at specific audiences were still evolving, and formats like video were still nascent. This year these are the main parts of Facebook’s pitch to advertisers”.

What does this have to do with me?

We get it. Most of us aren’t luxury car companies who are in talks with Facebook and have $4 million to spare on a Super Bowl segment. But the idea behind all these marketing tactics for the Sunday’s big game is something interesting to look into.

It’s all about lead generation

For those of us in investor relations, finding new ways to generate leads and get meaningful attention is what we all wished for at Christmas. Narrowed targeted marketing searches are ways to appeal to exactly the type of person you’re looking for. A NYT article states that “online behemoths like Facebook and Yahoo…already enabled advertisers to target narrow customer segments, like 30-something men who earn more than $200,000 and are in the market for luxury cars”.

Narrowed customer segments also means that it’s possible to target an industry competitor’s name and see who’s searching for them. Users who are searching online or in email correspondence with a competitor can then be served ads.


Marketers target specifics such as age, location, and interests of internet users. Facebook knows this of their users. A Facebook rep recently said that “the [targeting] segment includes not just football fans who like the Seahawks or the Patriots but also people engaging (e.g., likes, comments, shares) around party planning, sharing recipes, buying a new flat-screen TV, halftime show commentary, chatter about your favorite ads, and more, to identify new targets for the segment”.

Companies looking for investors can utilize targeted marketing to narrow their efforts and look at qualified investors who are interested in their industry. It is possible to target based on the users searching for competition and how much they make. Targeting gives companies the chance to create a web page and get pre-qualified investors’ names, email and phone numbers.

For more on Facebook’s new hyper-targeting segment, read the breakdown here.

Marika Hirsch
Marika Hirsch

As Blender’s Content Manager (aka ‘Resident Wordsmith’) Marika enjoys bringing readers the latest and greatest in both digital trends and IR tips. Follow along on Twitter: