Michael Aronson

Creative Director, dentsumcgarrybowen

thought leadership

Millions of Canadians watched the Super Bowl last year. But Canadian advertisers have yet to capitalize on what is year-in and year-out the biggest sporting event in North America. Where America’s biggest brands jockey for position, prestige, and big brand love, our brands fall behind, generally running their typical campaigns, throwing a last-minute nod to the game on social media, or bumping up a media buy if you happen to be a favourite football food. 

The Super Bowl in Canada is a missed opportunity to really connect with Canada’s fans, and bring cultural resonance to our brands by amplifying our advertising messages through what is increasingly a major passion point north of the border.

Of course, it goes without saying that our biggest passion point is hockey, which is where most Canadian advertisers integrate their brands—and with good reason. Hockey is unquestionably Canada’s sport. Our most recognizable celebrities are hockey players, and we see them showing up for brands not just in hockey season, but pretty much every day of the year. Our local heroes do a lot for our local brands, whereas Canadians in the NFL are rare, and don’t see the same popularity as they do in America. 

Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV Champion, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif is Canadian, but hardly a household name, despite being one of the lone NFL celebs to appear in a Canadian TV commercial in a role for Sports Experts. Still, there is a diversity that is missing in our representation of sport in Canada, and while many of us are great fans of hockey, many of us are completely overlooked by advertising that leverages “Canada’s game.” We are also lovers of tennis, and basketball, and judo, and football… in fact, we invented it.

There’s so much room for Canadian brands in football. Don’t let NFL rights be a barrier. Creativity can connect you to a football audience without logos or celebrities. Ready to jump in? Get in touch.