The Super Bowl, with its vast TV audience, is the moment of truth for every advertiser in America. A crowd-pleasing commercial can turn an obscure product into an overnight success or a witty slogan into a national catchphrase. A dud can sink sales and ruin a marketer’s image for years. With all this in mind, MSNBC.com takes a look at some of the one-hit wonders, the odd characters and other memorable moments of advertising’s biggest day.
REMEMBER HERB THE nerd? In 1986, when the Chicago Bears stomped the New England Patriots in New Orleans (46-10), Burger King introduced a $40 million campaign all about the balding, white-socked dude, supposedly the only man in America who hadn’t eaten at the fast food chain. The high-profile ad campaign was a whopper of a flop. Sales fizzled, the commercials were quickly yanked and the ad agency J. Walter Thompson was fired.