Focus on the Family got plenty of attention after CBS approved its anti-abortion commercial starring Tim Tebow, but the real winners in the publicity game may turn out to be sponsors whose ads got rejected. Go Daddy and PETA have milked their Super Bowl ad denials to great effect, and gay-dating site ManCrunch earned publicity it couldn't buy from its rejected ad. Is it better for business if Super Bowl viewers never see your company's commercial? (Watch Go Daddy's banned Super Bowl ad)
Zero is a great price: Super Bowl advertising is getting riskier now that so many viewers can skip commercials, says Aimee Picchi in DailyFinance. So it's great for business to produce an ad destined for rejection — you can get a "huge amount of free publicity" without the pricetag of "$3 million for 30 seconds." Given that math, ManCrunch clearly got the best return on its investment.
"Do Super Bowl ads still work? Yes, if you sell controversy (or junk food)"
The freeloading has to stop: Yes, it's great for moochers whose ads never had "a rat's chance in hell" of airing, says Catherine P. Taylor in CBS's BNET. But it's bad for the real ad buyers, because the "banned" spots suck up all the "pre-game hype." Networks should make rejectees promise they won't blab.
"Allegedly banned Super Bowl ads: A story that deserves to die"
What is CBS afraid of? This is largely CBS's fault, says Dan Neil in the Los Angeles Times. It accepted the Tebow ad by "All-Pro gay hater" James Dobson while rejecting gay-themed ads from ManCrunch and Go Daddy. Maybe the ManCrunch ad was a "hoax," but CBS's ad selections make you wonder if CBS and the NFL fear that "football itself is, well, kind of gay."
"No coming-out party for Super Bowl"
SEE MORE OF THE WEEK'S COVERAGE OF SUPER BOWL ADS:
• Tim Tebow's Super Bowl ad scandal
• Is Tim Tebow lying?
• Is PETA too sexy for the Super Bowl?
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