UMN Experts: Evolution of commercials

Claire Segijn; Steven Wehrenberg

With more than 100 million people expected to watch Super Bowl LII this weekend, some viewers may be just as invested in the commercials as the game itself.

Steve Wehrenberg and Claire Segijn, both with the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota, weigh in on the impact the ads might have on viewers and brands.

Steven Wehrenberg

"Despite increased hype, teasers, social media efforts and promotions, Super Bowl spots’ likability among the viewing public has declined over the past 10 years, according to USA Today's ad tracking data. It may be yet another troubling sign of Generation X's distaste for advertising, a lack of creativity on the part of Super Bowl advertisers or both.”

Steven Wehrenberg is a faculty member with the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota. He has more than 35 years of professional strategic communications experience, including six years as CEO of advertising agency Campbell Mithun.

Contact information:
612-280-6574 (cell)

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Claire Segijn

"More and more people are using an additional screen, such as a smartphone or a tablet, while watching television (i.e., multiscreening). During major television events like the Super Bowl, many people are using that time to post on social media, text or browse the internet. It was believed this form of media multitasking would lead to negative effects for advertisers.

However, recent studies show related tweeting during a TV event could actually increase program involvement, attention to the TV content, and increase brand recognition and brand attitudes. As a result, encouraging viewers to engage in related multiscreen behavior could benefit advertisers hoping to expand their influence during the Super Bowl.”

Claire M. Segijn is an assistant professor in advertising at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota. Her research interests include multiscreening, media multitasking, attention and advertising effects. Her work has been published in top tier journals in the field of communication and advertising (e.g., Human Communication Research, Journal of Advertising, International Journal of Advertising). Furthermore, her work has been honored with several awards of the American Academy of Advertising and the International Communication Association. In 2017, she received the ASCoR Baschwitz Article of the Year Award for Young Researchers.

Contact information:
612-626-7753 (office)

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