Beyond the game itself is the camaraderie, food, and yes—the commercials. The Super Bowl brings about a lot of the public’s attention, which advertisers jump on with both feet and millions of dollars! There have been some good ads over the years, my favorites usually being those heart-tugging ads featuring the Budweiser Clydesdales. But I think I will find a new favorite commercial this year.
Marketers are coming around to the notion that men are parents too! We fathers could use some good publicity because dads have been easy targets in commercials and TV sitcoms for years. Al Bundy, Don Draper, Peter Griffin in Family Guy, Homer Simpson, Ray Barrone did not do us well. A sleaze, a tease, a goofus, a doofus, and a self-absorbed dolt. They are all entertaining, but they leave an impression of incompetence and/or disrepute that many young people have burned in their heads. On the other hand, I was raised on the fathers in “Fathers Know Best”, “My Three Sons”, and “Leave It to Beaver”… all good models of fatherhood. So what if they were perfect beyond our means.
Nissan, Toyota, and Dove have all made ads this year showing dads in a positive light.
- Toyota’s dad ad features football player dads and their kids talking about what it takes to be a good father in its "One Bold Choice" campaign for the new Camry. Kurt Warner, DeMarcus Ware, LaVar Arrington and Fred Jackson are featured fathers. I wonder how many other pro football players could have qualified to be in this commercial.
- Nissan has a #withdad campaign. #Withdad is a celebration of, and inspiration for, dads who find innovative and exciting ways to make life better for their kids and families.
- The Dove Men Care #RealStrength commercial is pure fatherhood! Just everyday ‘dad-child’ interactions that touch the heart, but are also routine.
- And dads never stop being dads as told by Amy Purdy in another Toyota commercial. Amy lost both legs and kidneys to become a competitive snowboarder and, amazingly, a contestant on “Dancing With the Stars”. Her father’s uncompromising devotion to her saved her life!
What’s so great about these commercials is that young men see them, millions of them! Image is so important. And they see being a dad as a really cool thing—which it is! Unfortunately, the images many young men see is the misdirected machismo of young fatherless friends, or entertainers who are angry, have low morals, or will just do anything to make a buck.
Besides doing something nice for dads, advertisers also benefit from these dad-centric ads. One reason moms are portrayed on most commercials is because they control the spending on most everyday products. But the median income for U.S. households headed by single women is only $26,000, not much buying power at all. But the median income for married couples is $84,000, therefore a married woman has much more spending power!
Let’s keep families together because they want to stay together! They will want to work hard to stay together if they have their eyes open to all the responsibilities, difficulties, and especially the joys beforehand. For this to happen, we all have to help them--you, me, even advertisers!
In Toyota's "One Bold Choice" choice commercial, a young man is asked what kind of dad he wants to be. His answer, pointing to his father, "This kind!" That answer should be every dad's goal!