The Superbowl is a prestigious and renowned event for any brand to advertise at due to its popularity and large engaged audience. Jeep made headlines at the Superbowl by becoming the first brand to work with “the boss” Bruce Springsteen. Prior to this partnership, Bruce Springsteen had not appeared in an ad for some time – hence why it came as a slight shock to many people that Jeep had progressed with this collaboration. Read the Sponsored Linx Reviews to get more insights from this topic.

What was the Jeep X Bruce Springsteen advert about?

The advert consisted of the world-famous American singer doing voice-over talking about the fact that ‘everybody needs to meet in the middle’. His words of wisdom were delivered over visuals of beautiful shots of rural areas and cities. The ad did not actually contain any shots of Jeep product, instead it focused on Bruce rather than the car he was in.  The aim of the ad appeared to be more of a propaganda piece to get people behind the message the brand was portraying. Overall, the advert is very high production and quite powerful due to its underlying statements that reflect the ads main message, “ReUnited States of America”.

The length of the ad was just two minutes and 10 seconds, and with Superbowl advertising prices that will have cost a lot of Jeeps… Advertising at the Superbowl is highly sought after and something that many brands will fight for to reach such a captivated audience from just one ad. Some sources say that a 30-second ad costs $2.2 million to run at the Superbowl. This is not confirmed, but you can imagine it might not be too far off!

However, unfortunately for Jeep, this ad did not last long. Just three days after the ad aired, it had to be pulled. It turns out, Bruce Springsteen was pulled over in November 2020 and got charged with DWI, reckless driving and consuming alcohol in a closed area. A total PR nightmare for the brand! Jeep had most likely just invested millions in this new advert and had established a partnership that was so well praised just days before. Since removing the ad, Jeep has said, “message of community and unity is as relevant as ever, as is the message that drinking and driving can never be condoned”. It has caused many people to question the brand and wonder why they chose this influencer partnership in the first place? Was enough research not done beforehand? Did they not vet the influencer? Of the back of this, they have caused a lot of debate on social media and have had members of the public question how they ended up in this position.

Making sure you take the time to research the influencers you want to work with will ensure a successful partnership

Where did it all go wrong for Jeep?

It may be possible that the sheer star power of Bruce wowed Jeep to the point where they overlooked the issue. Or maybe Jeep just didn’t correctly vet Bruce as he is such a big star, and they may have thought they would have known if he had any prior problems that may affect their brand. Jeep either missed it or chose to ignore it – neither of which is particularly great. Whether it’s an oversight or lack of research, it has cost them millions in advertising – which they’re unlikely to have seen much benefit from. This is a clear example of why it is essential to vet potential influencers properly. Do your research. Have a clear brief. Get a contract in place. These are just three essential steps that must be taken to avoid an influencer marketing disaster. These steps may cost a business time and effort, but they are highly important and in hindsight, could have prevented this disaster for Jeep. Since the allegations came to light, they have removed the ad from their social media channels; however, it is still available to view on Bruce Springsteen’s social channels.

How can you prevent an influencer marketing crisis?

At Prohibition, we always look for the best possible influencer for our client and ensure that they will reflect the brand in a positive manner. To do this, we take a close look at authenticity and brand affinity – to ensure the influencer “feels right” for the brand we are working with. We will also look at an influencer’s audience to ensure that at least 50% of their audience matches the client’s target audience. Finally, we look at engagement, reach is significant but having an engaged audience is vital to creating conversions. All of these steps help to ensure that the influencer partnership is effective and delivers ROI.

It is essential for all organisations to protect themselves from this kind of crisis, as it is something that can have serious implications and can be avoided if the appropriate steps are taken. Anytime you work with an influencer you should, write a clear brief outlining everything you need the influencer to do and have a contract with clauses that protect the partnership. Essentially, ensure that you are choosing an influencer that upholds your brand values and will have a positive impact on your brand presence.

At Prohibition, we work with a range of influencers to establish partnerships and deliver campaigns for both B2B and B2C brands. Our work is creative, engaging and delivers real ROI.

Get in touch with us today by emailing to find out how we deliver an influencer marketing campaign for your brand.

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About Tyler Smith

PR Apprentice at Prohibition PR.