Tuesday , March 21 2023

The big Super Bowl ad domain winner was…

Coinbase likely set a TV-to-web conversion rate record

A picture of a QR code on a black background from Coinbase's super bowl commercial

Coinbase’s Super Bowl commercial featured a QR code. And nothing else.

The Rams defeated the Bengals in the Super Bowl yesterday, but the thing most of the world will talk about today will be the ads.

SquareSpace was the only domain-ish company to sponsor this year’s game, but there were some other notable ads related to domains.

Booking.com had an ad poking fun at the descriptive nature of its name (just don’t tell the Supreme Court that). It’s a name that was popular when category-defining domains were in vogue. Now, one word brands that don’t directly describe what a company does are more popular.

And we now know what company registered canigetuhhhhhhhh .com and other variants. It was McDonald’s.

But the big winner from a web navigation standpoint was not a domain name. It was a QR code. Yes, those square bar codes that were going to supplant web addresses, only to go away into obscurity but then be rebirthed thanks to touchless restaurant menus during the pandemic.

Coinbase ran a 60-second ad featuring only a QR code moving across the screen. And it was genius. It must have set a record as far as driving web traffic and signups are concerned. No one with their phone near them could resist scanning the QR code to at least figure out who the advertiser was.

Scanning it led to an offer for $15 in free cryptocurrency if you sign up for a Coinbase account or your share of $3 million in prizes if you already have an account.

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