super bowl
Branding Event Management

4 things #eventprofs learned from Super Bowl 49

The Super Bowl is one of the biggest sporting events in the world, if not the biggest. It seemed like the whole world was talking about it, in fact at the time of writing there was a very distinct Super Bowl feel running through the Irish twitter trends.
#eventprofs - SuperBowl
I decided to stay up until halftime and rest for work but I just could not turn away. The on-field battle, amazing half-time show and surprisingly entertaining commercials all created must-see television, and a must-see for event professionals everywhere.

Don’t worry if you missed it. Grooveyard has you covered. Here are four things event professionals learned from Super Bowl 49.

The Importance of Storytelling

The Super Bowl ads divide opinion. Some feel they disrupt the flow of the game and find them irritating, others are often more entertained by the commercials than the game itself!
One thing is universally accepted – Super Bowl ads are big business. Brands have the opportunity to showcase themselves to a global audience. However the days of telling people what your product is and why you should buy it are in the past.
Brands need to create meaningful connections with the audience.
This year cemented the importance of storytelling. Two stories in particular caught the audience’s attention. Both showcase the power of story.

Story hooks audiences, making them engage with your brand. However, brands also need to take responsibility for the stories that they tell. This Nationwide commercial received a lot of attention, and negative reaction.

Is this responsible use of story?

Humour Sells

Like story, humour is a great way to connect people to your brand. Not only that, humour produces an overwhelming positive affiliation for your brand. People love to laugh. The difficulty lies in actual producing something that people find funny. Here are two that definitely made us chuckle – one starring our very own Liam Neeson.

The Effectiveness of Experiential Marketing

Experiential Marketing has been a buzzword for a while now. Super Bowl 49 really saw how effective it can be.

SAP Super Bowl
Tech giants SAP produced a NFL stats zone at the stadium. The stats zone was a stroke of genius, providing fans with statistics and figures about the game. The interaction was fantastic by all accounts – it definitely gave us a few ideas for our upcoming events.
McDonalds was simply all over experiential marketing this year – producing a very simple and memorable experience for millions to enjoy. The joy that was created from their Pay with Lovin’ couldn’t be faked. The advertisement was real – and acted as an activation for the experience. Good will goes a long way. A very clever piece of experiential marketing.


My favourite experiential marketing showcase of Super Bowl 49. Fun and interactive, it made you want to play Pacman and managed to make a meaningful association with one of the most famous games in the world. Next time I see Pacman I’ll remember this ad, and wish I could have that experience. Definitely a success – I wonder will this happen to me if I buy Budweiser?

It’s Show Business!

The events industry revolves around great events. While the half time show wasn’t perfect (just google left shark for more) it was what it promised it would be – a great show. While the pop superstar performing a string of pop hits helped, here are four things we at Grooveyard loved most about halftime show:

– That Lion

Super Bowl Lion
Where to start? How about that massive golden animatronic Lion that kicked the show off! The lion looked fantastic. Its realistic movement was entrancing. What an entrance!

– Choreography

The choreography was amazing. Dancers were perfectly in unison for the most part (left shark) and the effects created were amazing. The sheer volume of dancers and performers was a sight to behold – and Pepsi definitely got their money’s worth by sponsoring it.

– Video Mapping

Did anyone else notice the 3d interactive dancefloor? Because we certainly did!

What was astounding about the 3d mapping was the fact that the dancers had no shadows. This effect is incredibly hard to create. It requires meticulous planning and lots and lots of quality lighting. The final effect was definitely worth all the effort. Flawless.

– Pyro

The pyro and Firework combination provided the perfect ending to the show. It was in keeping with the closing song (Firework) and by all accounts provided an extra buzz for the crowd. The pyro was incredible and worked seamlessly with 3d mapping to produce a memorable closing effect. We didn’t even mention Katy Perry singing from a shooting star!


A great show sandwiched between two halves of an amazing game – sprinkled with engaging and entertaining example of experiential marketing and advertising. Sounds like a recipe for a fantastic event.

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