Many people watch the Super Bowl for the ads as much as the game or the halftime show, and Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE:BUD) knew just what to do to make its Clydesdale Budweiser commercial the best of the night: tug on America’s heartstrings.
In the Tide ad, a Shroud of Turin-like stain with the face of San Francisco 49ers legend Joe Montana magically appears on a jersey and the shirt becomes a venerated item, until the fan’s wife washes out the stain with Tide; she just so happens to be a Baltimore Ravens fan.
The Budweiser commercial features a man breeding a baby Clydesdale horse but eventually the horse leaves when he’s made it to the “big time.” It seems they don’t see each other again until three years later when the man and the horse reunite at a big-city parade with an emotional embrace.
“That was absolutely heart-warming," Ad Meter panelist Tyler Stocks, a journalist from Greenville, N.C, told USA Today. "When I think of Budweiser, I think Clydesdale horses."
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@Alanna_Kellogg wrote, “If you didn't cry during Budweiser's Clydesdale commercial last night, you probably have a black hole where your heart should be.”
@smpfilms simply tweeted, “Budweiser's Clydesdale commercial <3”
NPR host Scott Simon (@nprscottsimon) shared, “Budweiser's Clydesdale ad--finally, an ad worthy of a huge audience. Had a nice story to tell. And anyone can enjoy it.”
Tears were flowing in @iowahawkblog’s home:
He wrote, “Budweiser's new Clydesdale commercial made my wife cry. Budweiser makes me cry.”
But the Clydesdale Budweiser commercial resonated with @OnionAdCzar in a different way, he said:
“Budweiser's #Clydesdale spot is making me feel guilty for giving my cat up to PetSmart's marketing team. Miss you, #Mittens.”
Those who participated in USA Today’s Ad Meter registered at admeter.usatoday.com.