Super Bowl ads went financial this year

February 11th, 2016


This year, the Super Bowl showed advertisements that went beyond the typical beer, cars and snack corporations. Financial services companies stepped up their advertising to cater to the changing preferences of millennials.


According to Bloomberg, at least six financial brands purchased airtime for the television spectacle that attracted more than 111.9 million viewers this year.  According to The Washington Post, a 30-second spot costs roughly $5 million.


Financial companies are aiming to establish a place among more mainstream institutions by promising easy and convenient ways to manage money. The Super Bowl featured just two financial services ads last year and three in 2014.


Although the financial world is changing constantly and rapidly, Americans’ attitude about personal finance has undergone a shift since the global financial crisis of 2008, with more people, practically millennials, now favoring online platforms and digital wallets.


For the first time, PayPal Holdings Inc., SunTrust Banks Inc., Quicken Loans Inc. and Social Finance Inc. –also known as SoFi– have all bought ads during the Super Bowl.


TurboTax is returning for its third consecutive year, and its parent company, Intuit Inc., will make its second showing.

Turbo Tax Deluxe Prod_Noll-1

Consumer spending grew the last year since 2005, and purchases of new U.S. homes surged in December to the highest level in 10 months, closing out the best year for housing since 2007, according to the U.S. Commerce Department.


Intuit Inc.’s commercial features a small business that uses its QuickBooks accounting software. Quicken Loans makes its first Super Bowl premiere with a spot for its new product, Rocket Mortgage. This product allows users to apply for a home loan online or on their cell phone.


In an interview with Bloomberg, SunTrust head representative, Jenna Kelly, said that they hope their first Super Bowl ad, “Hold Your Breath,” would start an ongoing nationwide movement promoting personal financial health for all Americans. In addition, the campaign directs viewers to a website, on, to gain financial tips and tools.


TurboTax returned for its third consecutive Super Bowl appearance with an ad campaign demonstrating its, online tax-filing software. A preview for its spot, “Someone Else,” featured James Lipton, host of “Inside the Actors Studio,” being told he won’t star in a commercial for TurboTax.


San Jose, California-based PayPal took advantage of the game being hosted in nearby Santa Clara to air its first-ever Super Bowl ad.


The company told The New York Times that their ad addresses the future of money as the world shifts toward digital wallets and mobile money management.


Social Finance Inc, began in 2011 as an online-lending platform for working professionals across various career fields. This year, it got the opportunity to showcase its financial products on a national stage. Its ad, “Great Loans for Great People,” would be its first Super Bowl spot.


Editor’s Note: Information from Bloomberg, The Washington Post and The New York Times was used in this report.