GM Chooses Sideline for 2013 Super Bowl Advertising Scrum
Automaker confirms decision shortly after announcing it will slash Facebook ad spending.
On the heels of the announcement that GM would cut its Facebook ad spending, on the eve of the social media giant's initial public stock offering, the General today confirmed that it would sit out the 2013 Super Bowl -- far and away the highest-profile venue for new television commercials during any given year. Confirming statements he made earlier to The Wall Street Journal, GM's global marketing chief, Joel Ewanick, said the company understands "the reach the Super Bowl provides, but with the significant increase in price, we simply can't justify the expense." That expense, according to Automotive News, could reach $4 million per ad; companies that buy multiple spots would pay a discounted price of $3.7 million to $3.8 million per. NBC reportedly charged an average of $3.5 million per ad for this year's contest.
Although GM is back in the black after the government bailout, and can no doubt afford even the inflated Super Bowl advertising prices, Brian Steinberg of Advertising Age posits that the decision to sit out the Super Bowl is, at least in part, about the cost-cutting. He writes that GM is "still looking to keep costs down, and Ewanick has been on a mission to wring $2 billion over five years out of marketing costs for the company's flagship Chevrolet."
Of course, it's not all about the bottom line. One GM executive, speaking to Advertising Age, said that overall ad spending for 2013 would remain flat compared with 2011, meaning the company is as much about new approaches and increasing the bang-for-the-buck factor.
One way that's happening is with television product placement. According to the article, GM trucks will appear in the upcoming "Dallas" remake appearing on TNT in June, and the company reportedly is negotiating to place vehicles on-screen in the third season of CBS' "Hawaii Five-0."
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