Super Bowl-ing Online with SEO

Making the most of traditional advertising means transforming nacho eating, beer drinking, Super Bowl fans into online, active participants quickly. I’ll be honest, I didn’t even watch the game. But I did watch the Super Bowl ads online. And one thing was clear: Super Bowl ads are making more efforts to “pull” visitors to the virtual world and get them involved, where they can be be impressed with brands and form infancy loyalty to the advertisers.

As always, GoDaddy.com aired their painfully un-witty ads basing their persuasion, principally, on the sex appeal.

CareerBuilder.com won the prize for cleverness and humor. However, the amount of interactivity and conversion power was rather lacking online. They’ve made an effort to allow visitors to share video clips from the ad on facebook—what a revolutionary idea (please notice the sarcasm in my voice). When I searched “Career Builder Super Bowl Ad” I found a sponsored link with this green url in the description: www.CareerBuilder.com/Super_Bowl_Ad . . . I chuckled when this link took me to a 404 error page.

I believe hulu.com took the cake for successfully bringing and keeping visitors to their website. And they did it simply by showing the Super Bowl ads that spectators had already seen. SocialMedia gave hulu the grand-winning prize at the tweetbowl. Twitter-ers still continue to tweet the website as they share their favorite ads to the “tweet-world.” A cnet article about hulu‘s ad has received over 3000 diggs, and delicious participants are bookmarking their favorite Super Bowl ads from hulu.com/superbowl as we speak. I’ll admit, I’ve even sent links of my favorite ads from hulu to friends and family.

What did they do? They aired one memorable commercial with Alec Baldwin showing their “.com” logo and also developed a user-friendly, professional, and speedy, Super Bowl portal page. The result? They got talked about and now they’re getting traffic.

Being a search engine optimizer, there is one aspect of their online approach in which I believe they failed, therefore missing potential traffic. A quick Google search for “Super Bowl Ads” doesn’t show hulu‘s page within the first five pages. “Watch Super Bowl Ads” puts the site at number 19 on the second page. I don’t know if marketers at hulu planned on an SEO strategy for the page, but here are a couple of ideas they could have followed:

  • Begin link building months in advance with “Super Bowl Ads” in the anchor text. Yahoo shows only a handful of backlinks to the page.
  • Do a quick analysis of the site (because of all the javascript and flash script)  to improve keyword usage and spiderability.

All in all, the site’s design is marvelously simple. It far outweighs, AOL’s fanhouse.com, which is the number one result for “Watch Super Bowl Ads”.  Corporations should continue to think outside the “TV” box and into the virtual world, using a variety of methods—SEO being a necessity.

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