Healthy Super Bowl ads find ways to appeal to masses

Stephen Colbert

On Sunday, people all over the country will gather around the television to watch the Denver Broncos battle the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII. Having such a captive audience makes the Super Bowl prime television real estate for companies to launch new advertising campaigns.

And this year, in addition to the traditional chips-, soda- and beer-centric commercials, viewers can except an increase of ads pitching healthier food and drinks. However, these companies won’t be marketing their products as healthier to gain more consumers.

According to National Public Radio, brands like Cheerios, Dannon Greek-style yogurt and Wonderful Pistachios have opted for tactics that capitalize on celebrity cameos, sex appeal, emotional context or an ideal to appeal to the masses.

Art D’Elia, vice president of marketing at Dannon, said the yogurt company targeted individuals in their 20s and 30s with a sexy ad featuring actor John Stamos.

General Mills also tailored its Cheerios Super Bowl ad to appeal to a broader audience.

The cereal company partnered with a non-profit called The Family Dinner Project  to create The Family Breakfast Project.

Doug Martin, marketing manager for Cheerios, told NPR the goal is to promote the experience of building family connections around the breakfast table rather than just the cereal itself.

Also jumping on the bandwagon was Wonderful Pistachio. With Stephen Colbert as its spokesperson, the company used a ‘cool’ factor rather than health benefits to promote its product.

Bill McKinnon, advertising and marketing expert of Galewill Design, said consumers are not often motivated by health when considering making a purchase, so companies are seeking out compelling ways to connect with “people at a direct, human level.”

Healthy Super Bowl ads that promote more than just health benefits:

Dannon Greek-style yogurt:

Stephen Colbert for Wonderful Pistachios:

Cheerios and The Family Breakfast Project: