Brands Take Advantage of Super Bowl Power Outage

Article first published as How Quick Acting Brands Took Advantage of Super Bowl Power Outage on Technorati.

It’s happened before, in the NFL, NHL Stanley Cup back in 1988, and MLB numerous times, when a game must be delayed due to circumstances beyond the control of everyone’s best laid plans.  But this past Sunday, when the power went out for 34 minutes during the Super Bowl, some quick thinking brands – Oreo, Tide, and Audi to name a few, used the unforeseen event to engage in some humor on social media site Twitter.

The quick action by brands like Oreo was made possible because executives from the brand side, as well as their digital agency of record, in this case 360i, we’re monitoring everything on social media from what AdAge calls a ‘mission control center’.super bowl power outage


While the “You Can Still Dunk in the Dark” Oreo Pic was perhaps the most popular in terms of re-tweets with 15k and counting, Audi took a humorous shot at competitor Mercedes Benz with it’s reaction to the outage. As many know, Super Bowl XLVII was played at the Mercedes Benz Superdome.  

In the case of Tide, they used humor as well to remind people, that while they can’t get your #blackout, they can get your stains out. Timeliness and relevancy to the power-outage, along with humor seemed to be key for the brands messages during the blackout.

The Super Bowl was the highest rated ever, CBS announced this morning. And even though the final numbers haven’t been tallied, it didn’t stop them from highlighting the overnight household rating of 48.1/71 in metered markets, which is the highest ever according to this article from Huffington PostNielsen also reports that Baltimore had the highest ratings of any of the markets.

With this many people watching, and the huge power outage event halting normal viewing, it drove people taking to Twitter to create a trending hashtag, #blackoutbowl. During the time of the power-outage, there were around 185,000 tweets per minute, which puts it as the top Super Bowl Twitter moment according to  the social media site’s blog.

The other biggest peaks in Twitter traffic we’re, Jones’s 108-yard kickoff return for a TD (185,000 tweets/minute), Clock-expires; Ravens win (183,000 tweets/minute), Jones’s 56-yard TD catch at the end of quarter 2 (168,000 tweets/minute), and Frank Gore’s 49er TD (131,000 tweets/minute).

By the beginning of the second-half, the volume of tweets had already surpassed last years total of 13.6 million, and after all was said and done, tallies for Super Bowl 47 were 24.1 million tweetsaccording to Twitter.

About Geoff Simon

Geoff is owner/operator of Simon Search Marketing. He graduated cum laude with a B.S. in Business Administration from California State Polytechnic University in 2003. Geoff immediately secured employment as an account coordinator with Grey Direct West, (now G2 Direct & Digital) working for Bank of Americas online banking division. From there Geoff has worked in a search marketing capacity for companies including Intermark Group, Disney Interactive Media Group, and Toyota Dealers Association. During his time Geoff has worked on brands including Disney Family, Toyota, Lexus, National Geographic, Red Bull USA Events, That '70s Show and Carsey Werner.
Geoff likes ice-hockey, is a Chicago native and proud dad to his almost 1-year old son Cyrus.
Find Geoff on Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn, or follow his Twitter handle @geoff_simon


  1. Brands Take Advantage of Super Bowl Power Outage


  1. […] are 18% higher for live events versus just running standard promoted tweets. So companies who used the Super Bowl power outage, for instance, to engage users, could be doing that a lot more frequently, and a lot quicker. […]

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