Press Release

January 31st, 2017

Ace Metrix Recognizes the Super Bowl Ads That Moved Us

Ace Metrix Recognizes the Super Bowl Ads That Moved Us


Ace Metrix

Business Wire

LOS ANGELES, CA.— January 31, 2017 — Ace Metrix, the leader in measuring the impact of television and digital advertising, today released new research on the most emotionally moving ads of Super Bowls past, in advance of the big game on Sunday, February 5th in Houston, TX. While pundits, pollsters, and bloggers annually predict and post-mortem their “best ads” lists, Ace Metrix examined actual viewer response to ads that aired each Super Bowl (SB) since 2010 (the last seven games) to uncover the ads that U.S. viewers found most heartwarming, inspirational, and humorous, and in contrast, least relatable.

“Everybody seems to publish a list of Best Super Bowl Ads, yet most are merely opinion of the respective authors or a ‘show of hands’ from a small focus group. Using advanced NLP and analytic techniques, we are able to take a different approach and scientifically derive emotional scores based on actual reaction among at least 500 unique viewers of each ad,” said Peter Daboll, CEO of Ace Metrix.

These lists represent the highest compliment to the advertisers’ creative teams—achieving the emotional connection that they set out to achieve. Daboll added, “Our data has repeatedly shown that these emotionally evocative ads, whether hilarious, heartwarming, or inspiring, simply work. They grab our attention and create a bond with the advertised brand that lasts far beyond the :30 or :60 message – and importantly to the advertisers, influences our behavior.” In an era where brands are striving to stand for something beyond themselves, these ads stood out.

Some of the ads on the list might be familiar, others quite surprising—but all were successful at making us feel something.

Most Inspiring Super Bowl Ads

Inspiration is a somewhat personal inclination, but Ace Metrix data revealed 2015 was a year advertisers took to rousing the SB audience. Microsoft snared three of the top five most inspirational spots by showing us how technology can empower. Procter & Gamble connected by turning a colloquialism on its head, and Toyota relied on the great Muhammad Ali and Paralympic Amy Purdy to spur us to overcome. Frequently occurring words and phrases include “very inspiring”, “motivating”, “empowering” and “uplifting”.

The Most Inspirational Super Bowl Ads

Brand Ad Title Ad Length Super Bowl Year
Microsoft Estella’s Brilliant Bus 1:00 2015
Microsoft Braylon O’Neill 1:00 2015
Microsoft Empowering 1:00 2014
Always #LikeAGirl 1:00 2015
Toyota How Great I Am 1:00 2015

 Most Heartwarming Super Bowl Ads

These are the ads that touched us and brought tears to our eyes. Budweiser’s masterful play on our soft spot for animals easily stole our hearts, while compassion and fatherhood warmed us well. Frequently occurring words include “heartwarming”, “touching”, “emotional” and “sentimental”. 

The Most Heartwarming Super Bowl Ads

Brand Ad Title Ad Length Super Bowl Year
Microsoft Braylon O’Neill 1:00 2015
Toyota One Bold Choice 1:00 2015
Chevrolet Life 1:00 2014
Budweiser Brotherhood 1:00 2013
Budweiser Puppy Love 1:00 2014 

Funniest Super Bowl Ads

Frito-Lay’s groundbreaking crowdsourced “Crash the Super Bowl” contest (which ran for ten years beginning in 2006), took full advantage of fan talent, and produced all five of the funniest Super Bowl ads (and reportedly doled out over $7 million to the ads’ lay creators). Frequently occurring words and phrases include “funny”, “very funny”, “laugh out loud” and “humorous”.

The Funniest Super Bowl Ads

Brand Ad Title Ad Length Super Bowl Year
Doritos Underdog :30 2010
Doritos Man’s Best Friend :30 2012
Doritos Ultrasound :30  


Doritos Sling Baby :30 2012
Doritos Goat 4 Sale :30 2013

“What Were They Thinking?!” Super Bowl Ads

Just for fun, these are the ads that made us shake our head, the ones that made us ask, “What the….?”, or “Who approved THAT?!” Strange, nonsensical, or just way, way out there, these ads saw few of us connect to the creative. While some approaches may be edgy and grab attention, they often only work with a certain demographic, leaving the rest scratching their heads. Frequently occurring words include “gimmicky”, “weird”, “fake”, “boring”, “not interesting” and “didn’t get it”:

The LEAST Relatable Super Bowl Ads

Brand Ad Title Ad Length Super Bowl Year Your Big Idea :30 2013
Emerald Nuts & Pop-Secret Awesomer :30 2010
Mountain Dew Puppymonkeybaby :30 2016
Squarespace Real Talk with Key and Peele :30  


Stella Artois Crying Jean 1:00 2011


About Ace Metrix
Ace Metrix® is the standard in television and digital video analytics, dedicated to measuring the impact of video ad creative. We provide data and insight to enable marketers and creative teams to produce more impactful work, test and adjust creative executions in real-time, and understand what creative drivers impact their brand KPIs.

The Company is privately held and is backed by leading venture capital firms and industry leaders including Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, Palomar Ventures, Leapfrog Ventures and WPP.

Follow Ace Metrix on Twitter: @Ace_Metrix.

PR Contact: Shannon Gerard   989-992-0384   |

Note: Ace Metrix®, the Ace Metrix logo design, Ace Score®, Ace Metrix LIVE® and Creative Lifecycle Management® are registered trademarks of Ace Metrix. Other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

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