The Super Bowl is the biggest American marketing event of the year. But, in 2014, Newcastle Brown Ale didn't have the $4.5 million needed to buy airtime. So, instead, they called bollocks on the overhyped ads altogether, creating a fully integrated campaign around the epic Super Bowl ad they could've made if they had the money. Dreamt up by Droga5, the campaign began with teasers, trailers and behind-the-scenes interviews with would-be stars, all in promotion of a Super Bowl spot that would never air. Newcastle conducted real focus groups and documented the bemused reactions to their fake trailer. Then, finally, as the expensive, overblown Super Bowl spots aired, Newcastle released a cheap storyboard version of their ridiculous ad, complete with party sharks, battle apes and cats on skateboards. The campaign racked up over a billion impressions and made nearly every Top Ten Super Bowl list, despite never even airing.
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