This year’s Super Bowl ads featured high-profile celebrity appearances from Ellen DeGeneres (Beats Music), Bob Dylan (Chrysler), and Scarlett Johansson (SodaStream), but a new report suggests those brands might have been better off saving their money.
The video technology firm Unruly tracks how and why people share video ads online. It found that just one of the game’s five most-shared ads featured a big name endorsing a product. The finding was not limited to Super Bowl ads. Users are generally less likely to share ads in which big stars appear, Unruly found.
That ad was Bud Light’s star-studded “Up For Whatever” ad, which was the game’s third most-shared ad, and featured appearances from A-listers Arnold Schwarzenegger, Don Cheadle, and Minka Kelly.
Here’s Unruly’s chart of the top 12 most-shared ads from the Super Bowl. Just three included celebrities:
The report, which you can download here, found that the trend was not limited only to the Super Bowl. In looking at its list of the 100 most-shared video ads of all time, Unruly discovered that only 13 featured celebrities.
The highest-ranking celebrity ad was Jean-Claude Van Damme’s “Epic Split” video for Volvo Trucks, which checked in at No. 10.
In general, Unruly advises that big brands should save their celebrity budgets for the halftime show and instead invest in creating high-quality content that people will want to share with their friends.
“Celebrity presence can amplify the sharing effects of an intrinsically shareable online video,” the report concluded. “However, celebrity presence alone is not enough to trigger sharing activity.”
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