Within minutes of appearing on stage, the dancing shark had become an internet sensation. A Google search for ‘Left Shark’ yields over 64,000 results, including hundreds of news articles and memes. On twitter, Left Shark has several accounts, the most popular of which has over 20,000 followers. One thing that the rise of Left Shark has shown is that the Super Bowl—and its star-studded halftime spectacle—cannot be ignored.
Figures published by Billboard show that viewing figures for the halftime half-hour outperformed every other half-hour block of the show with the exception of the final 40 minutes of the game, proving that the Super Bowl appeals not only to sports fans, but also to those whose only interest is the extravagant performances of the half time show.
No wonder then, with such enormous viewership, that a mere 30 second advert during the Super Bowl will set you back a cool $5 million. With big brands such as Pepsi, Budweiser and Doritos stumping up the cash year-on-year, advertisers must feel like they’re getting bang for their buck.
But who is doing it best? Every year, the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter takes a live poll during the broadcast of the game and ranks adverts from best to worst. Since the Ad meter started in 1989, Budweiser, Bud Light, Doritos and Pepsi have dominated the rankings, with one of the four being in the top spot almost every year.
Here’s some of the best ads from over the years:
This Orwellian ad for the first Macintosh computer, directed by Ridley Scott was aired only once – during the third quarter of the 1984 Super Bowl.