Do Super Bowl commercials really score? Ask Mucinex about its #SuperSickMonday stats

Football stadium lights and field
The big game yielded positive results for RB's Mucinex as its pre- and post-Super Bowl ads helped push brand metrics way up. (iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Mucinex commercials and the brand boost they bring tend to spike as the cold and flu season arrives. That's only logical. But this winter, the Reckitt Benckiser brand saw its biggest-ever leap in brand awareness and purchase intent—and it wasn't just a seasonal shift.

After a high-visibility pre- and post-Super Bowl campaign, #SuperSickMonday, brand data hit new highs for RB's OTC remedy, according to YouGov BrandIndex.

Mucinex’s index score—calculated by YouGov using six brand-health measures—hit a high of 25 several times this winter, three higher than it had ever ventured before.

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YouGov CEO of Data Products Ted Marzilli pointed to the Super Bowl campaign, as well as the continued push behind the brand’s well-known Mr. Mucus spokescharacter, as boosting factors.

“What is different about this year is that Purchase Consideration and Index scores for the brand increased more than usual,” he said. “It seems likely that Mucinex’s ad and hashtag campaign #SuperSickMonday during the Super Bowl, which received lots of press and social media attention, made the difference this year. The brand’s ongoing marketing campaigns and widely popular character Mr. Mucus helps too.”

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Purchase consideration of Mucinex rose to its highest level in several years, according to the data, with 22% of shoppers reporting in February that they would consider the brand the next time they needed cold or flu OTC medicines. The Super Bowl campaign, created by McCann, ran for several weeks in a teaser TV spot and on social media before the game and then immediately following the game on Feb. 5.

In the post-Super Bowl ad, Mr. Mucus appeared in the time slot between the end of the game and the trophy presentation to the winning Philadelphia Eagles. The Mucinex snot monster talked about “Super Sick Monday”—an actual phenomenon that witnesses millions of people calling in sick the day after the big game.

The Mucinex ad was the lone pharma brand spot associated with the Super Bowl in 2018, a year that saw pharma brands sitting on the sidelines for a second year after backlash from media, pundits and consumers in 2016. Complaints then centered on the "inappropriate" spotlighting of conditions such as toe fungus and diarrhea during the traditionally lighthearted ad line up, as well as the larger political issue of pharma ads on TV.

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