Was The Nationwide Commercial The Worst Super Bowl Ad Ever? [VIDEO]

Derek Hunter Contributor
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Super Bowl ads are supposed to leave an impression. After all, they cost $4.5 million for 30 seconds, $9 million for 1 minute and reach the largest audience of the year, so making one that sticks with viewers is important. However, the type of impression an ad leaves is just as important, if not more so, than leaving one in the first place. On that front, Nationwide Insurance may have made a super-fumble.

Nationwide ran an ad featuring a young boy talking about all the things in life he wasn’t going to get to do — ride a bike, get cooties — because he died in a “preventable accident.” Calling the ad a downer is an understatement. But it did leave an impression on the tens of millions of viewers who saw it. Unfortunately for Nationwide, that impression was incredibly negative.

Watch that ad:

Once it aired, the reaction was immediate. The Internet has empowered consumers to give instantaneous feedback on anything that enters the public consciousness. Nationwide didn’t have to wait long to find out what the audience thought of their $6.75 million investment. It wasn’t pretty.

The reaction was so negative that Nationwide had to issue a statement as to what their intent was:

Preventable injuries around the home are the leading cause of childhood deaths in America. Most people don’t know that. Nationwide ran an ad during the Super Bowl that started a fierce conversation. The sole purpose of this message was to start a conversation, not sell insurance. We want to build awareness of an issue that is near and dear to all of us-the safety and well being of our children. We knew the ad would spur a variety of reactions. In fact, thousands of people visited, a new website to help educate parents and caregivers with information and resources in an effort to make their homes safer and avoid a potential injury or death. Nationwide has been working with experts for more than 60 years to make homes safer. While some did not care for the ad, we hope it served to begin a dialogue to make safe happen for children everywhere.

The creators of the ad were “proud” of their work,

The public had a different reaction.











It wasn’t all outrage, some people had fun with it.