Published on

February 25, 2024

Google's Super Bowl lesson in purpose

Ewan Patel
Co-founder & CSO


min read

2023 was a difficult year for Google when it came to AI. They were practically expected to be a leader, but investors saw them as slow to move - with Bard rebranding to Gemini only last week. At the same time, Google's latest Pixel launch was focused on AI, with every new campaign working to show consumers how AI was already a part of their everyday interaction with their Google phones.

So that was the challenge for Google when it comes to AI, and when it came to this year's Super Buowl ad:

When we're seen as slow, and when the tech isn't exactly seen as trustworthy, how can we showcase our AI making a positive impact on people's lives today?

Their answer is a beautiful piece of storytelling.

Google did three things particularly well:

Make purpose accessible and authentic

Google’s ad promoting accessibility only works because their product promotes it too. Find your product’s strengths and play to them. And if your product isn’t where you need it to be, focus on that, not on the marketing. No TV ad will ever make your product better for the world.

Keep asking ‘so what?’

Establish your product’s ‘benefit ladder’ from a product benefit to an emotional benefit. Google elevated the benefit of their Guided Frame feature into an emotional benefit, concluding with it enabling Javier to take a photo with his wife and newborn child.

Be crafty

Google may have had a near infinite budget for their Super Bowl ad, but the filmmaking device that made the ad special was as low-fi as putting petroleum jelly on the camera lens. Not everything needs to be high-tech...

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