Super Bowl commercials inspire out of this world effort

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NEW ORLEANS – For much of the day Tuesday, astronauts roamed on campus at the University of New Orleans.  They handed out high-fives and posed for pictures.  But what costumers really provided was an education on Super Bowl advertising.

“The Super Bowl is such a big platform to get messages out there, ” said Cynthia Negron of the Edelman Group which is handling the astronaut appearance for body spray manufacturer AXE.

The astronauts’ appearance will be repeated at other areas around the city like the French Quarter.  It’s part of AXE’s Super Bowl ad — the company’s first ever.

“We’re in this very high-tech world, but you still need the high touch,” said UNO Professor Dr. Paul Hensel.

Hensel says Super Bowl ads are a source of pride, even ego, for many companies.  He says a 30 second ad during this year’s game costs about $3.8 million and companies want to maximize their investment.  So he says many are using other events and social media to draw attention to their upcoming ads.

“They can take this as the jumping off point for doing all kinds of things that involve the consumer,” he said.

AXE plans to do just that.  The company is teaming up with an aerospace company to send people into orbit.

“And the follow-up is in fact that people can go online and submit for a chance to go to space,” explained Negron.