For the fourth year in a row, an Israeli company will be part of the Super Bowl conversation, thanks to an ad from do-it-yourself webpage builder Wix.
On Wednesday, the NASDAQ- traded company premiered its second Super Bowl ad in as many years.
Last year, Wix focused on promoting its ease of use, and got retired Green Bay Packers legend Brett Favre to star in videos about how easy it was to build a website for players’ post-football small business ventures. (Favre ‘n’ carve charcouterie, anyone?) This year, it teamed up with DreamWorks pictures to put Po, the main character from Kung Fu Panda, in the center of its ads, which focus on “stunning” visuals.2015 Wix Superbowl commercial
“Po is very positive and very empowering because he’s like the average Joe and he’s also a super strong and inspiring character, so we found it really similar to the empowerment Wix gives to all small business owners, so we thought it’s the perfect celebrity to carry that message,” said Natalie Rozenboim, the marketing manager who headed the project at Wix.
The commercial and five related spots in the campaign feature the lovable Panda attempting to boost business for his dad’s noodle shop with over-the-top ideas, including advertising in the Super Bowl. The commercials recreate famous ads of Super Bowls past, such as the ribbitting Budweiser frogs and the Old Spice “perfect man.” The voice of reason in the movie, the red panda Shifu, responds that ads are good and well, but only if there is a great website behind it all.
The company is also preparing a social media “war room” to spread its message on game day this Sunday, hoping that they can catch onto momentum from any dramatic events that take off on social media. In 2013, when a blackout hit half the Super Bowl stadium, Oreo famously tweeted an ad reminding people that they could enjoy cookies in the dark.Superbowl ad featuring Bar Refaeli
An unexpected turn of events, such as the uncoordinated “left shark” dancing behind Katy Perry in last year’s halftime show, or Janet Jackson’s 2004 “wardrobe malfunction,” could provide fertile ground for Wix to make itself heard, notes Vered Avrahami, Wix’s head of communications.
All that effort makes sense.
A slot in the Super Bowl this year reportedly costs $4.5 million to $5m., and Wix reportedly footed the bill without the aid of DreamWorks, which did all the animation (and is advertising the third iteration of Kung Fu Panda, which was released in the US last week). The cost of the ad slot alone (and the 114 million sets of eyes that come with it) is somewhere between a third and a fourth of what Wix reportedly spends on advertising each year. The strategy is not simply to air the 30-second slot, but to build an entire campaign and conversation around it.Superbowl ad featuring Scarlett Johansson 2014
Israel’s forays into the Super Bowl advertising world began in 2013. Sabra, a hummus brand that originated Israel, became the official dip of the NFL, much to the chagrin of guacamole-lovers everywhere. Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli made a memorable appearance in a grossout GoDaddy commercial, in which she famously made out with an unattractive tech nerd named Walter.
It was the same year that do-it-yourself soda-maker SodaStream became the first Israeli company to advertise in the Super Bowl, a role it reprised in 2014 with its new spokeswoman, actress Scarlet Johansson.
SodaStream had to remove a jab at Coke and Pepsi to placate other major Super Bowl sponsors, though some analysts speculate that raising such controversy is part of a strategy to boost attention. A second controversy over the company’s factory beyond the Green Line seemed to overshadow the Coke and Pepsi flap altogether. SodaStream has since moved the factory.
This year, Wix has its work cut out for it. On Sunday (US time), it will compete for attention with Lady Gaga, who will sing the US national anthem, Coldplay and Beyoncé, who will perform in the halftime show, and a slew of giant global brands.
Oh, in between all that there will be a football game between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers.
For a behind-the-scenes view of the ad, listen to our latest JPost Podcast episode at jpost. com/podcast.