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Survey: Super Bowl Viewers Continue to Challenge Automakers

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Jan. 29, 2015—With the Super Bowl coming up, carmakers are finding one thing tough to tackle: getting their high-priced marketing messages to resonate with viewers.

According to a new survey by Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com, competing for advertising attention during the game, as well as sustaining shopper attention, is an ongoing challenge for automakers, as evidenced by viewers' limited recollection of car commercials. The results support a continued downshift in auto advertising for this year's Super Bowl, a trend that's making headlines around the nation.

"Even though several automakers including Toyota, Nissan, Kia, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are scheduled to advertise during the 2015 Super Bowl, it's still just half the number that advertised last year," Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com, said in a release.  "This drastic drop in the number of automotive advertisers suggests that, this year at least, more automakers are finding the high cost of advertising in the Super Bowl is not justified by the results, especially when the spots don't necessarily resonate in the long run with car shoppers."

Kelley Blue Book conducted a survey the week of January 5 among KBB.com visitors to determine viewer opinions when it comes to automobiles and the Super Bowl. Of those surveyed by KBB.com, only 24 percent remember any cars or trucks being advertised during last year's Big Game. As for the brands that made the biggest impression among the 24 percent, Chevrolet (33 percent), Ford (27 percent) and Dodge (13 percent) scored highest among automakers that consumers remembered having a 2014 Super Bowl commercial.

"Whether this is a trend or a blip remains to be seen," Nerad said. "It wouldn't surprise to see more auto manufacturers back on the Big Game next year."

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