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The Most Expensive Half-Time Ad in the Super Bowl

Every year, people look forward to seeing what ads will premiere at the Super Bowl perhaps even more than the game itself (link to top Super Bowl games).

Even people who don’t like football will tune in to watch the half-time show and the commercials. Those ads will become part of pop culture for the next year or so. (How long were those annoying Budweiser frogs a thing??)

Brands pony up the big bucks to advertise during the Super Bowl because they know that they have a captive audience and an opportunity to make a big impact. Unfortunately, spending a lot of money doesn’t always translate to making that huge impact.

Chrysler 200 and Eminem

In 2011, Chrysler aired the most expensive Super Bowl ad of all time for its Chrysler 200 sedan.

Chrysler spent $12.4 million on the ad, which featured some of the instrumentals from the hit song, “Lose Yourself,” by Eminem. The rapper is also featured driving the Chrysler 200 through Detroit and then delivering the tag line once he arrives at a theater.

There’s nothing flashy or special about the commercial other than the Eminem appearance (which likely accounted for a huge chunk of the ad’s price tag). However, the ad extolled the virtues of Detroit and the hard workers behind the auto industry.

After the ad aired, sales of Chrysler went up more than 50 percent and Detroit saw a small revival of interest. Unfortunately, the ad wasn’t a miracle maker, and the city has continued to struggle under economic meltdown and political scandal.

The Chrysler ad was certainly not one of the popular Super Bowl ads, and it is unlikely that many would remember it even if you played it for them. However, the ad does speak volumes to the power that a Super Bowl ad can have on a brand’s bottom line.

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