When it comes to the big bowl game, there are three kinds of people:

●     Those who root for their favorite top dog or underdog teams.

●     Those who watch the game just for the commercials.

●     Those who avoid the game, and then watch the commercials on YouTube to see what the fuss is about.

We at MediaSpark are proud to say we aren’t Monday morning quarterbacks, but we are Monday morning media junkies. We couldn’t wait to grab our coffees and talk about how creative this year’s ads were.

Here are our favorites.

The clear (and clean!) winner: Tide

This ad was nothing short of genius and will leave every creative marketer in the world blinking in the glow of Saatchi & Saatchi’s lightbulb. Any time there is picture perfect clothing in a commercial, a digital ad, or a TV show, we don’t see what’s being sold; we’ll just hear David Harbour’s voice in the back of our mind saying, “This is a Tide Ad.”

The parodies were spot on, the rising actor from ever-popular Stranger Things was the perfect host, and the four different ads with the same message drove the message home–and straight to the laundry room.

TIP: Tide flipped the focus of their product from a negative (stain removal from an unfortunate event) to a positive (clean clothes on attractive people). Instead of focusing your message on the problems you solve, think about how fantastic your audience will look and feel once they’ve used your products and services.

Doritos Blaze + Mountain Dew Ice

Great minds may think alike, but they rarely surprise us. In this unexpected collaboration, we see, hear, and almost taste how well Doritos Blaze and Mountain Dew Ice could be together. The juxtapositions couldn’t be more different, yet this ad works on every single level, from the names of the products to the choice of the actors (Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage and icon Morgan Freeman) to the music, the effects, and the scenes. The result: a memorable masterpiece that makes our mouths water.

Another reason this ad scores: These Pepsi brands did a fantastic job of integrating the campaign on social media. They created a branded, interactive Snapchat filter that wasn’t distracting and combined it with the Snap Ads that were run in high frequency throughout the game. It worked. The commercials earned 115,100 mentions on social media during the game alone.

TIP: Just one more reason shake things up AND integrate social media into your campaign strategy.

Local Shout Out: Burton AC, Heating and Plumbing And More

Burton AC, Heating and Plumbing And More sounded off with an energetic drumline that felt upbeat and in tune with the Game Day atmosphere. The ad caught our attention and added to the festive experience and felt more like a reminder than an ad, which was a nice touch.

TIP: When creating media marketing materials, consider where and when your audience will be listening. The closer you can match their mindset, the more receptive they’ll be to what you have to say.

Congrats to this year’s top ads! If you want to see how to create winning media marketing efforts, you can kick off your next campaign here.