NEW YORK (AP) — Sex. Babies. Cute animals.
While the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens battle on the field during Super Bowl XLVII, advertisers are competing against each other on advertising's biggest stage with the usual tools of their trade.
The stakes are high, with 30-second spots going for as much as $4 million this year. And more than 111 million viewers are expected to tune in.
Some trends are easy to spot. The seven automakers during the game including Mercedes-Benz, Toyota and Lincoln are focusing on telling long, epic stories that focus on family.
Celebrities show up in force, in spots for Best Buy, Kraft Mio, Samsung and MilkPep and others. Expect babies and cute animals to lead to "awwws" in ads for Budweiser, E(asterisk)Trade and Hyundai Motor Group's Kia.
Some highlights from the first quarter:
— Car ads focused on families: Hyundai's "Epic Playdate" spot right before kickoff showed a family partying with the band The Flaming Lips: wreaking havoc at a natural history museum, getting chased by bikers, going to a petting zoo and playing in a park.
"Make every day epic with the new seven-passenger Santa Fe," a voiceover states.
When the family gets back home and the daughter asks, "What are we going to do now?" The father replies, "Well, I think there's a game on," and the broadcast went straight to the kickoff.
Audi's 60-second ad in the first quarter, with an ending voted on by viewers, shows a boy gaining confidence from driving his father's Audi to the prom, kissing the prom queen and getting decked by the prom king.