Amazon pokes fun at failed voice tech in Super Bowl spot
- Amazon released its full 90-second Super Bowl commercial that explains more about the mysterious "Amazon Beta Testing Program" that the company teased last week, according to details shared with Marketing Dive.
- In the ad, Amazon taps "famous friends" — Harrison Ford, Forest Whitaker, astronauts Scott and Mark Kelly, and "Broad City" stars Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer — to test new Alexa-enabled devices, but highlights why "not all devices make the cut" to be voice-powered, as the e-commerce giant integrates its Alexa assistant into more technology. Several failed Alexa-enabled devices, including a hot tub, podcast-playing toothbrush and dog collar that orders food repeatedly in response to barking, are featured.
- Developed by Amazon's internal creative team, the ad will air during the second half of the game. This year marks Amazon's second consecutive Super Bowl spot for Alexa.
Amazon's ad showing a number of Alexa fails takes a humorous route on the voice-enabled trend, with the company seeming to poke fun at itself and the idea that not every device should be connected to the internet. The "not everything makes the cut" messaging appears to highlight that the company is continuing to improve its voice assistant and find the best devices for Alexa's expansion, while also working out some of the kinks in its devices as voice tech rapidly evolves.
The e-commerce giant is continuing the theme of a malfunctioning Alexa, which the company introduced for last year's Super Bowl push. The spot in 2018 starred celebrities Gordon Ramsay, Cardi B, Rebel Wilson and Sir Anthony Hopkins filling in for Alexa, who lost her voice and refused to fulfill users' requests. The ad was one of the most popular from last year's big game, topping several "best-of" lists. It also ranked No. 1 on YouTube's ad leaderboard based on its 50.1 million global views. Continuing the theme two years in a row highlights the importance of a consistent message and playing off of successful brand content that's proven to resonate with consumers, especially as Amazon gets deeper into advertising after becoming the third place digital ad platform last year.
Amazon is investing heavily in marketing around Super Bowl LIII with its 90-second spot, as 30-second commercials are said to be going for around $5 million. By continuing to showcase Alexa and its voice-enabled devices at the Super Bowl, the company is attempting to hold onto its dominance in the smart speaker market and heighten its brand awareness during one of the most popular events of the year. Amazon's share of the smart speaker space is expected to drop to 63% in 2019, from 67% in 2018, as the company faces competition from Google and other companies, according to eMarketer.
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