CIBA Vision Buys 'Post-Gun' Spot

By Alicia Griswold

CIBA Vision’s ad from Grey will direct viewers to the company’s online promotion.

ATLANTA CIBA Vision is betting on a specific Super Bowl moment in time.

The contact lens maker has bought a 30-second spot to air in what it calls the “post-gun” time slot, those two-and-a-half minutes in which five 30-second ads will play after the game has ended but before the championship trophy presentation.

Julie Collins, director of consumer marketing for CIBA Vision in Atlanta, said the time slot appealed to her because the audience levels drop from 85 million during the game to 73 million immediately after, citing last year’s numbers. “We expect to get 85 percent of the audience at 38 percent of the cost,” she said.

Collins said she was paying about $850,000 for the 30-second spot. The cost per spot during the game averages $2.5 million.

“We think it’s a smart way to be part of the night,” said Collins.

If the game is close, Collins said, the numbers could be higher. The opposite is also true. “Super Bowl’s are blowouts, people tune out at halftime unless it’s a close game,” she said. “I’m betting that viewers will watch to see what happens to the Carolina Panthers.”

Still, Collins is hedging her bets with an online promotion tied to Sunday night.

Grey in New York created the ad, which promotes the company’s Focus Night & Day continuous wear lenses. The spot airing Sunday night has been retooled from a commercial that launched on American Idol last spring. This effort directs Super Bowl viewers to the company’s Web site. There they will find an offer for a free contact lens fitting. “We’ll be able to track interest from there,” Collins said.

The client spent $26 million on advertising between January and October 2003, up from $19 million in 2002, per TNS Media Intelligence/CMR.