Snickers Will Air The First Live Super Bowl Ad

Image courtesy of Jay Adan

Although the championship game is played out on the field, every year the Super Bowl provides another chance for intense competition in the form of advertising one-uppery. This showdown will be no different: after Hyundai announced it would film its Super Bowl ad during the game and air it directly after, Snickers says it will air the first live ad in the history of the NFL championship.

Mars Inc. will produce the 30-second spot in real time while New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons players take a break, reports The Wall Street Journal.

Actor Adam Driver will star in the western-themed ad, which will be another installment in Snickers’ “You’re not you when you’re hungry” series where famous people are transformed into famous cranky people when they’re cranky. It’s unclear who Driver will turn into — perhaps a combination of Kylo Ren from the new Star Wars films and his cowboy-hat wearing Al Cody from Inside Llewyn Davis?

Mars Inc.

Mars Inc.

While some folks used to look forward to the Super Bowl just for the ads, we’re now living in the streaming era of ad-free content, spurring advertisers to seek new ways to stir up excitement. Live advertising works for both TV and social media.

“People aren’t forced to watch commercials anymore. They can easily tune them out,” said Peter Kain, executive creative director at BBDO New York, the agency working with Mars on the Snickers spot. “We need to do something that makes people want to watch and talk about the ads.”

Mars agrees.

“Consumers are getting more and more demanding,” Berta de Pablos-Barbier, vice president of marketing at Mars, told the WSJ. Namely, sticking a celebrity in your ad and calling it a day doesn’t cut it these days.

This won’t be the first live commercial on TV, however: NBC aired live commercials fro brands such as Oreo, Toyota, and Reddi-wip in December during sits broadcast of Hairspray Live. Target Corp. also aired a four-minute ad/Gwen Stefani music video during the Grammy Awards telecast last year, notes the WSJ.