The University of Florida Chapter of PRSSA partnered with The Agency at UF and UF Ad Society to create the first Brand Bowl on Super Bowl Sunday. The purpose of the Brand Bowl was to analyze the trustworthiness of the Super Bowl advertisements. For these students, it was more than a sporting event; it was an advertising showdown. Brands compete for consumers’ trust and the viewers decide who wins.
The study revealed that Google had the most trustworthy ad and Mint Mobile had the least trustworthy ad.
“I served as the liaison for PRSSA and recruited our Chapter members to help plan and participate in the event. Building and maintaining trust is one of the key functions of public relations, so it’s really important that our PRSSA Chapter be involved in this project,” Andrea Mora, UF PRSSA VP of Chapter Development said. “This was also a great way for us to connect with organizations like The Agency and Ad Society to think more creatively about what integrated communications looks like in a real-world setting and how advertising tactics can impact a brand’s reputation.”
With Google as the most trusted advertiser, other top contenders included Weathertech, Microsoft and Alexa. The other top contenders for the least trustworthy ad were from Michelob, Burger King, Sprint and Turkish Airlines. Questions in the survey evaluated a range of topics including the extent to which the viewer felt the commercial message was deceiving; after viewing the commercial message, how much did the viewer trust the brand being advertised; and did the commercial message affect the viewer’s consideration to purchase the brand.
“In an era of fake news, I hope that this event is able to generate useful insights in understanding the minds of college students when it comes to trust in advertising,” Nicole Bianco, The Agency at UF research pillar manager, said.
The Brand Bowl took place during the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 3, at The Agency at UF located in the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications (CJC). Twenty-six CJC student volunteers filled out a survey for each advertisement shown throughout the Super Bowl.
“The Brand Bowl is a real-time survey of advertising on its biggest stage. I hope everyone that participates has an amazing story to tell after the experience. Having worked in advertising myself, I would have loved hearing this story from someone interviewing for an internship or job,” Dan Windels, UF advertising visiting lecturer, said.
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communication students gathered before the Super Bowl for formal training. The training helped the students taking the evaluation survey to understand precisely what they needed to keep an eye out for during the ads.
Jordan McCrary is a senior public relations major and leadership minor at the University of Florida. She is the president of UF PRSSA, works as an account executive at The Agency at UF and as a communications assistant for the Institute for Public Relations. After graduation, Jordan hopes to work in travel or entertainment communications.