Can Super Bowl ads still infect the Internet?

The typical 30-second Super Bowl ad should be the perfect Internet meme, capable of going viral quickly and infecting large swaths of Internet users with its marketing message. After all, advertisers are paying millions of dollars, hiring the best creatives in the industry, bringing celebrity talent aboard, and giving social media sites seemingly everything needed to go viral on the Web. And, yet, only a handful of the ads on deck for this Sunday’s Super Bowl will ever make it into the national watercooler conversation on Monday morning. And even some of those that do — such as the “racist” VW ad and the “sexist” Kate Upton Mercedes-Benz ad may do so for the wrong reasons.

So why is it so hard to go viral on the Internet?

As a society, we are becoming inoculated to the rampant viral and meme culture of the Internet, in the same way that we’ve become inoculated to other forms of advertising. In short, with the huge growth of social media and the sharing culture of the Web, we’ve become so obsessed with creating the viral — through YouTube videos, animated GIFs and trending topic tweets — that we’ve effectively vaccinated ourselves against anything weakly viral. Just as our bodies develop anti-bodies to combat viruses in the real world, so too, can our minds develop anti-bodies to the memes in the virtual world.

On a daily basis, we are barraged with a constant stream of content that wants to go viral — cute cat videos, cute baby videos and famous people doing ridiculous things are just the most obvious examples. It’s to the point where the 30-second Super Bowl ads are no longer “the best talking baby video of the year,” they are “the best talking baby video of the past 30 minutes.”

Another reason may be that Super Bowl advertisers are going about it all wrong. Flush with huge marketing budgets, they are turning their 30-second advertisements into 30-second entertainment clips, with potentially negative consequences for getting consumers to actually buy their products.

Read More at : Washington Post