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Message from BlackBerry CMO Frank Boulben on the BlackBerry Super Bowl Commercial

By Kevin Michaluk on 3 Feb 2013 09:18 pm EST
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BlackBerry just uploaded a second version of the BlackBerry Super Bowl commercial to youtube, this one with an introduction by BlackBerry's Chief Marketin Officer. Frank Boulben intros the ad spot by setting out the objectives: to let America know that BlackBerry is back, and to let them know that BlackBerry 10 is worth checking out. 

Read CrackBerry's Behind the Scenes Look at the BlackBerry Super Bowl ad
What did you think of the BlackBerry Super Bowl ad? Vote now! 

Reader comments

Message from BlackBerry CMO Frank Boulben on the BlackBerry Super Bowl Commercial

71 Comments

Well, I didn't love it myself but it has TWICE as many likes on the NFL website than the commercial in 2nd place. The Z10 is currently in FIRST place out of 60 commercials. Whadda I know I guess.

* BlackBerry by choice *
Glad they did this. But I think they really could've done more with more time. I know its crazy-ass expensive but it would have made a huge difference in my opinion.

It wasn't that bad.....really what can they say in 30 seconds? Was the Samsung commercial better at communicating its message?

It was bad...for a brand new OS...brand new hardware. Very first superbowl commercial.

My question to Frank is; who are you targeting with this ad?

I for one haven't got a clue. If I didn't know it was a BB commercial I couldn't care less.

Was there even a phone in this spot? (I know there was but very little of it). Gotta say the ball got dropped. I see no message in this ad. As a huge BB fan, I've already forgotten it...how long did it take for the non BB faithful to forget?

Couldn't agree more. It was awful for the opportunity BlackBerry had. It's the Superbowl, so create an ad people will be talking about. It came and went and no one outside of here is talking about it. I am watching all three network morning shows as they talk about the commercials and the ones that were CREATIVE or edgy are getting the FREE publicity and the buzz. It doesn't take a marketing genius to understand what to produce to get people talking. You had the oppprtunity and the stage to do that and you failed. I seriously am worried about BB10 now becoming a flop. The ad was weak, and the phone doesn't have much to say "WOW". It's a phone that has "cool" features to catch up to the competition, but has nothing to have the competition catch up to BlackBerry. As a longtime BB user I am disappointed. :(

You guys don't get the commercial lol. Here's a hint. Watch it VERY carefully. Then think about what you just saw. Then think about what you are doing.

It still sucked, no one knew it was a Blackberry commercial until the very end. And no one will remember it 30 seconds later

I think it was actually really good. It is subtle cognitive advertising. Tomorrow when you see someone text as they walk down the street, you are going to think about elephant feet, or disappearing into a poof of colour, or rubber ducks.

What a ridiculous advert! I love BlackBerry but I'm ashamed to admit that the maker of that is behind the phone I'm using right now! Dissapointing.

That is where the rest of their ad campaign come into play. They have to follow up with other commercials. The first super bowl ad wasn't intended to show all the features. It was just to get the awareness out. It took me a while to get the the ad, then I realized it was pretty damn clever.

I think it served the 'typical SB ad spot' got the point across. Now it's time to start up the media machine and show what it CAN do!!

That's better than the BB commercial alone, at least after picking curiosity, people can know where to get it.

It gets people thinking BlackBerry? What are they up too? Then the new commercials will show the features.

Yeah, and the fact that all news sites are talking about BB commercial shows that is achieved its goal - to grab attention...

"In 30 seconds it's quicker to show you what it can't do". I get it. Those other phones need apps to do stuff. The BB10 can do what you need.

That was a bad advert. period. BlackBerry should have given a free Z10 to every person on the Super Bowl stadium and shown Alicia Keys or both the QB's making calls with the phones.... SOMETHING !!!!! To generate buzz, word of mouth something outrageously positive to remind USA and the World that BlackBerry is still alive and trying (now I have my doubts) to survive and thrive. If Heims green lit this ad I'm selling my stock come tomorrow. I regret it, after waiting months for OS10 but RIM brass JUST doesn't GET IT...

I agree that Alicia Keys should've done something with the phone. Maybe place a white Z10 on top of her piano and showing off DLNA capability, projecting it on a large s screen in the stadium.

People will say, "what kind of phone is that on her piano?".

Gets people talking.

I agree that Alicia Keys should've done something with the phone. Maybe place a white Z10 on top of her piano and showing off DLNA capability, projecting it on a large s screen in the stadium.

People will say, "what kind of phone is that on her piano?".

Gets people talking.

How many other ads today had to post on YouTube to explain what they were trying to do? SMH. My feeling is no one will remember this ad tomorrow. Time will tell I intend to ask my coworkers tomorrow who are all on iOS and Android if they saw it. Curious to see how they repky

No fence but after seeing it and thinking about it, it got me thinking...BIG waste of money. No fence but how many non BB users are going to remember about the Z10 in late march when it comes out in the US?

I guess this type of ad is what you want for the Superbowl but I'm not sure it was that memorable. Oh well..

Someone tell Frank that this launch, the marketing, and this commercial have been a joke! Seriously expect the stock to drop more tomorrow if this is the start of the big campaign. You would have been better off giving every PlayBook early adopter a Z10 and at least have gotten some more eveangilists out there!

Since when do you try to sell a product by pointing out what it and any other like product cannot do? Really - that just does not make sense, especially given the cost to BlackBerry ! I'd fire Frank.

It is way better than the Samsung commercial. At least the use of extremes were stimulating and it was fun. The Samsung commercial was annoying. BlackBerry rulz!

OK, so your budget was $4,000,000 (30 second Superbowl ad)? IMHO you should have held a fan made YouTube video giveaway contest and the world votes on the top 10 submissions for cash prizes. First 2013 submissions that are semi-decent get a new Z10, unlocked. 2013 Z10's at $599 each costs $1,205,787. That would have left $2,794,213 for cash prizes for the top 10. All they'd have to do is submit a 30 second video on how awesome the new Z10 is, make a tweet to follow #BBRY, and LIKE on Facebook...that would have caused a sh!tstorm of interest. Viral marketing baby...

No offence, but it didn't peak anyone's interest. 310 views on Youtube is hardly worth 4 million.

Actually it has over 320,000 views on blackberry's channel. Not bad considering its been up for less than 24 hours.

huh? where are the benefits for the customer from any ad? you get benefits from the product, ads are to brainwash you to buy it... and the fact that all news sites are talking about it shows that it achieved that... (btw you also are talking about it not about Oreo ad ;))

The problem with the Super Bowl ad was that the tag line was about what the Z10 can't do. People have been talking about what Blackberry can't do for years. The headlines will all be about what blackberry can't do when referring to the ad. I think most people that either saw or didn't see the ad will think that blackberry still can't do the things android and iOS can do.

The ad was ok for entertainment, but as far as changing perception, I think it was a failure. I think that the Samsung ad with Seth Rogen was much better, the brand was repeatedly mentioned and the add was very funny! Looks like Samsung won this one... Too bad, I was cheering for blackberry.

Sent from my iPhone

Frank, that commercial was terrible. I sincerely hope you go back to the drawing board and find a way to actually show America that BlackBerry is back and actually show Americans why they should buy a BlackBerry. Your commercial did neither.

I believe Blackberry did a really good job on the Ad personally!!

What they've left you with is thinking this phone can do more than what you currently have (iOS, Android, etc) so curiosity starts kicking in and you start visiting their website to feed your curiosity. You then see the features on what the phone is capable of. You then go to a phone provider outlet to see what the fuss is about and at that point you will most likely purchase the phone on a plan :)

I see this as a start of a larger campaign.

Okay... So I get the point of the ad but the problem is no one knows what the phone CAN do yet. They better follow up this commercial with a TONY of feature commercials that show off what the Z10 can do. It's a dropped ball in my opinion. I really was hoping for a knockout, belly aching laughter of a commercial. Something that sticks in your head for awhile and makes want to check the phone out. THIS doesn't do it. As a looooooongtime BlackBerry fan, I'm disappointed. The keynote and now this?!!!.. We're doing our part with twitter updates, shares and keeping the BlackBerry name going. Blackberry needs to do the same for us.

@BBMarnel

guys...the thing is...this is actually the most liked Superbowl video on nhl.com...so i think we are a bit hard at CB, the targeted market was not us don't forget, im pretty sure they made a lot of people going into there website and drive trough the new features of the phone, better there than having a 1 hour commercial because it is what it will take to explain what the new blackberry have to offer

I personally thought it adressed the audience quite well. Don't forget that the advert is not meant to appeal to us die hard fans who follow crackberry at least 10 times a day.

As some people mentioned what this should is make people say "well if it can't do the things in the advert then what can it do.

Hopefully this will force them to do some more research into the product, maybe go down to one of the outlets and ask to have a go on it.

I think this would have translated into sales if the phone was available the next day is stores. The problem with the delay now is that they have to keep people interested for the next two months.

I think this is a good way too start, nice and slow not too much information. The campaign can now continue with the release of adverts listing 1 or 2 of the key features at a time.

It is like the launch event, people on crackberry forget that it was good enough as the majority of the world only knew blackberry was bringing out a new phone. I use my brothers as a barometer. If I hadn't constantly updated them they wouldn't have even known that.

In some respects if we don't like the advert on crackberry, it is probably an indication that it was good for the target audience.

The Android trolls are really stinking up the comments over on that YouTube video page - might want to go over and give them a little balance...

I would have paid a few million more for the extra time or hire a celebrity...in comparison, samsung's ad didn't show much of their phone either but it was more interesting in it's 1st 30 seconds.... All i know is i told a lot of people that jumped ship to keep an eye out for the ad and now they're saying "is that all?"...

BlackBerry needs to get more creative or hire a new ad agency.

I have an idea for a great commercial. It's called "where's my Blackberry?". Quite simple really. A guy or girl going to work leaves his new Z10on his desk and his boss comes over and discuss about work, and his boss being sneaky takes his Z10 to his office. When its time for a break, he looks for his Z10 and finds out it's missing. Looks for his boss at his office, while opening the door he discovers his boss is playing with his Z10. Lot's you can do with "where's my Blackberry?".

Just a thought. Might be lame to some people.

I was just checking out the BlackBerry facebook page and noticed that people in the US who watched the SuperBowl only saw from commercial #2 onwards, they didn't air the BB commercial it seems in the US.

They should have released the behind the scenes video before the SuperBowl. Then people would have had a better understanding of the commercial. It was still a pretty good commercial.

Well , i am no expert in marketing , but 30sec. Really isnt enough to show what bb10 can do ,it wasnt bad ,but not wow good either
But you cant argue with results ,#1 wow ...didnt expect that
Again ,i guess you have to take into account that the device wont be delivered to the public right away ,so to push all the features down their throat and not having the device ready sucks too
Its a good start ,but they should ramp things up coming the release
They have a good device,they have probably the best os out there right now .....they just got to push a bit harder
Bb10 believe ....i know i do

Whoever can't appreciate or see into or past the ad, or what it's message was and keeps mindlessly and brainlessly bashing it, doesn't even know anything or what they're talking about either. The ad was fabulous and FANTASTIC!!