Big Game Ads Increase Reach for Advertised Websites… They Also Induce Hunger

football snacks high five

Obviously we have all heard the banter and rage about commercials from the Big Game.  I decided to check out Adweek to see how they ranked the top 5 spots and how each spot faired in daily reach.  The chart below takes a look at daily reach, the results are nothing less than amazing, proving that the one goal that advertisers try to accomplish during the Big Game was met.  This demonstrates that awareness and user interest in these commercials sparks cross-media interaction… and many users decided to hit the web to find out more…

The increase in growth ranged from anywhere between 38% and 83% across Adweek’s Top 5 rated commercials.   Average reach during a month is quite low for most sites but the growth seen over the 5th and the 6th is what really packs a punch. saw an increase of 83% in reach in just a matter of 24 hours, while Coca-Cola and Chevy saw increases in reach upwards of 30%.

While received negative criticism and a spot on Adweek’s “worst list,” it didn’t stop viewers from checking out on Sunday… proving that any publicity is good publicity, and bringing a 48% jump in reach overnight.

daily reach adweek top 5 big game commercial spots

I decided to take a look at Google Trends, just to see if any of the big names listed above hit the search trail, and they did:

google trends big game

Notice that was #7 on the Google Trend – and not any of the ranked advertisers.  Surprising to me, considering it was listed as a Top 5 Worst ad.  This further pushes the thought that any publicity is good publicity, at least for GoDaddy.

How did hungry fans satisfy their hunger?  Through pizza of course!  While pizza companies, like Papa John’s, made our taste buds salivate with their pizza deals in the days prior to the Big Game, they also saw positive halo effects without spending $3M on a 30 second spot.  Papa John’s reach spiked 50% overnight, followed by Pizza Hut with 31% and Domino’s at 19%.

daily reach pizza websites big game

So, whether you were:

  • An advertiser and everyone loved it
  • An advertiser and everyone hated it


  • Just a hungry football fan and didn’t see an advertisement

You helped increase reach for some big brands; a job well done, whether you, the hungry football fan, or the critics thought so or not.

About Pashmeena Hilal:
Pashmeena Hilal is a Senior Associate at Compete. Pashmeena does competitive analytics, POV's and surveys for the retail division of Compete. Before Compete Pashmeena was an agency account manager at Carat and Studiocom.