Super Bowl Ad Data Suggests That the Hashtag Might be Dying Out
Since first being introduced on Twitter in 2007, the hashtag has become the lifeblood of social media promotion across almost all platforms, a way to make sure that what you post reaches the right people at the right time. For years, we've seen billboards, TV ads and even graffiti emblazoned with the familiar symbol, but recent data suggests that it might soon become obsolete.
The Super Bowl is, without doubt, one of the most important dates on the calendar for advertising revenue. It's the most watch TV event in the world, and companies pay obscene amounts to make sure that they get one of those coveted 30-second slots. Examining Super Bowl ads can often reveal fascinating things about both the industry and the world at large.
This year, two things were evident - that people are reading a lot more deeply into the political implications of advertising at the moment, and that the URL is slowly reclaiming its place as the most effective means of online branding. Last year, 45% of all Super Bowl ads featured a hashtag, but this year only 30% did, while 41% featured URLs.
This is the first time in some years that URLs have featured more heavily in Super Bowl ads than hashtags, but to add to that, social media platforms also saw limited involvement. Only 5 ads mentioned Twitter, while Facebook and Instagram saw 4 a piece.
Does this mean that advertising is becoming less reliant on social media? Not necessarily, but it shows that brands are less interested in fuelling campaigns with synergy. One explanation for this could be that trending is more reliant on sharing now, so the need for hashtags is reduced.
It might seem like a backwards step to incorporate more URLs into TV ads, but unique content is more important than ever. Brands want you to see their content in a confined environment, social media promotion is just another means to guide you there, and hashtags don't really help with that. Will hashtags ever truly die out? Unlikely, but we may seem them fade into the distance before too long.
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @Songbird_Callum
Super Bowl Ad Data Suggests That the Hashtag Might be Dying Out Reviewed by Callum Davies on Wednesday, February 08, 2017 Rating: