Does Your Brand Value Storytelling? A Lesson From 2017 Super Bowl Ads


After reading that headline, you may be thinking: what could Super Bowl ads possibly have to do with storytelling and content marketing, let alone applying concepts to a content marketing plan? On the face of it, spending millions of dollars to grab a spot in one of prime time’s most coveted advertising forums doesn’t have a lot to do with the very root of content marketing. However, based on the ads seen during this year’s Super Bowl, in roads to content marketing are being made.

Differing from past Super Bowls, this year’s round of ads catered to a much different concept. Instead of the usual approach to Super Bowl ads – ads that valued hilarity and ridiculousness in order to gain notoriety, and thus, remembrance – this year’s ads valued story telling above all else. Here are some short examples from this year’s Super Bowl advertisers:

  • Audi, sharing the story that their brand values equality for all, including equal pay for equal work, regardless of gender.
  • Budweiser, sharing the story and journey of one of the brewery’s founders to St. Louis, Missouri to begin one of the most storied brands in our nation.
  • LIFE WTR, sharing that, above all else, they value inspiration. So much so, they are sharing an artwork series of LIFE WTR bottles.

The variety of stories in this year’s ads covered a wide range of topics. However, one thing was clear: the brands represented in this year’s ad pool valued telling their story over simply pushing product. This is where traditional advertising and content marketing begin to cross over. One of the key tenants of a well-thought out content marketing strategy is the idea that your brand is telling a story – to your customers, your prospective customers, anyone who clicks in to read about your brand and what you stand for.

The outcome is simple: brands that use content to propel their story add more value to their brand, and thus, more loyal customers as a benefit.

Your brand is one of the single most valuable assets of your organization. The more you are able to move the story and progress of your brand forward in your customer’s minds strengthens the brand. For financial institutions, gaining the trust and sense of security from you customers through financial education and other related content marketing executes on this concept.

What will your brand do to blend content marketing and storytelling in order to further your brand?