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February 16, 2023 4 min read

Rihanna, Entertainment, and Retail Drive Engagement at Super Bowl LVII

For the eighth consecutive year, EDO scored the effectiveness of every national Super Bowl LVII ad with real-time consumer behavior signals to identify the top-performing ads, Big Game celebrity appearances, and trends. 

Per EDO data, the Super Bowl is consistently the top-performing TV program for advertisers in driving ad effectiveness. Since 2019, the Super Bowl has been 307% more likely to engage viewers than the average primetime broadcast program. The second highest-performing program of the past three years, the NBA All-Star Game, has been only 126% more effective than primetime broadcast in generating consumer engagement.

For even more Super Bowl insights, scroll down to find our top 10 stories of the week featuring EDO data and commentary.

Trends: Alcohol gins up while auto hits the breaks

With many purse strings tightened from economic uncertainty, only bold brands with deep pockets could hope to score a touchdown in this year’s Super Bowl advertising lineup. Despite at least 20 fewer companies pre-announcing national campaigns this year and EDO tracking far fewer rookie advertisers compared to previous years, it seemed the show must go on for those brave enough – or well-funded enough – to take the field.

Even stalwart Super Bowl industries like auto had fewer advertisers, and none ranked in the top 20 for the first time since EDO started its Super Bowl rankings eight years ago. The fumbling crypto industry, which came out swinging last year, was also absent.

However, beer brands were among the night’s winners, with Molson-Coors’ #6 Blue Moon and ABInbev’s #11 Bud Light driving 6.8x and 5.3x more engagement than the median Big Game spot this year, respectively.

Are you not entertained? 

Entertainment brands won big, with Warner Bros. Discovery’s The Flash, The Walt Disney Company, and LiveNation appearing in the top five performing ads of the night.

A pregnant Rihanna broke the internet during the queen’s first performance in seven years. During halftime, Rihanna generated over 1000x as much online engagement as the median-performing in-game Super Bowl LVII ad — and over 2000x as much engagement for the entire day.

Viewers were so enthralled with the performance that Rihanna outperformed engagement for the top ad in EDO rankings (Warner Bros The Flash, which performed 24x better than the median Big Game spot this year).

Eagle-eyed viewers who noticed the singer glowing a little more than usual also went online to search for whether Rihanna was pregnant. The term “Rihanna pregnant” generated 52x as much online engagement during Halftime as did the median-performing Super Bowl LVII ad.

Retail ads deliver

Online shopping and delivery thrived with eCommerce company Temu earning four of the top 20 airings, while Uber’s Uber One subscription service had a Diddy-led one-hit-wonder-filled spot that charted in the top 20, dominating competitor DoorDash’s spot.

Further, during the Apple Music Halftime show, Fenty Beauty also generated about 13.6x as much online engagement as the median-performing Big Game ad this year. The brand would have ranked third among all Super Bowl LVII ad airings had it been included in our rankings — beaten only by The Flash (24x more engaging) and He Gets Us (14.2x).

More Super Bowl LVII Insights from EDO 

EDO insights were featured all week long with nearly 80 press mentions in outlets like CNBC, The Hollywood Reporter, and Reuters. We also powered Adweek’s day-of ad performance rankings, along with pre- and post-game commentary from our CEO Kevin Krim and SVP, Head of Client Solutions, Laura Grover.

Last week, Laura broke down what the data tells us about making a great Super Bowl ad. The secret? It takes a little nostalgia, some celebrities, and a healthy dose of futurism. 

On Tuesday, Kevin discussed why opinions and social sentiment don’t matter when it comes to true Big Game ad performance. Opinions mislead, but the data doesn’t lie: the customer’s behavior matters most when it comes to Big Game ad effectiveness.

If you’re pining for more, here’s our top Super Bowl stories of the week:

  1. Adweek: Why You Shouldn’t Be Swayed by the Popularity of Super Bowl Ads
  2. Ad Age: Movie Trailers in Super Bowl 2023 Highlight Studios’ Need for a Post-Pandemic Boost
  3. Bloomberg Tech: Going Viral: Super Bowl Ads
  4. CNBC: Here are the best ads that ran during the Super Bowl
  5. Fierce Video: Warner Bros., Disney score big in Super Bowl advertising: EDO
  6. The Hollywood Reporter: Super Bowl Ads 2023: The Year When Brands Split Costs
  7. Reuters: Super Bowl ad hits feature ‘The Flash’, Disney as automakers pull back
  8. TotalRetail: Temu and WeatherTech Top Performing Retail Brands During Super Bowl LVII
  9. The Wrap: ‘The Flash’ Was the Most-Watched Trailer of the Super Bowl Ahead of ‘Guardians of The Galaxy’ and ‘Fast X’
  10. Yahoo: Super Bowl ads: GM, Netflix, Michelob roll out star-studded campaigns ahead of big game

This year’s Super Bowl ad scores were tighter than the Chiefs and Eagles in the final minutes of the Big Game. Check out EDO’s complete ranking of Super Bowl LVII ads