Puppy Bowl VIII vs. Super Bowl XLVI

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While much of the country enjoyed (the ads of?) the Super Bowl on Sunday, many of the nation’s viewers chose a different spectacle to eat chili and drink beer to.

These are the people that want to participate in the heraldry and grandeur of the super bowl…but would prefer to watch adorable puppies instead of burly guys. These are the viewers of the Puppy Bowl, an event which annually sets a bunch of puppies loose in a room vaguely resembling a football stadium and lets them have at plush footballs. The show imitates the real thing, complete with player stats, a referee, pig cheerleaders (replacing last year’s spirited chickens) and even a half time show (this year it was “Kitty Half Time”).

The Puppy Bowl even went social this year, with @meepthebird live-tweeting the game from inside the “stadium” and answering fan questions. The bird impressively gained 21,000 followers in only one day-a fact that inspired much online jealousy.

I personally prefer flipping between the Super and Puppy bowls, if only to drive everyone I’m watching with crazy, but is the rest of the country watching?

Using social media monitoring platform Visible Intelligence®, I took a look at how conversation about the Puppy Bowl held up against the bigger topics of the day. Although it is not huge, the Puppy Bowl did make an impression:

While anticipation for the Super Bowl has been building for many months, the Puppy Bowl tends to sneak up on people- unfortunately, there are no play offs or fantasy teams. As the chart below shows, conversation spiked at noon, when the first airing of the Puppy Bowl began on the east coast (the 2 hour show was aired repeatedly for 12 hours)

The people of twitter were certainly excited about the adorable game:

Even celebrities could not resist:

Like  the Super Bowl, viewers of the Puppy Bowl aren’t only watching for the sport. A large amount of conversation occured around the advertisements accompanying the game. Main sponsor Subaru drew many positive comments:


Kitty Half Time show sponsor Bissell also garnered admiration:

And, as always, there was no shortage of snarky tweets:

The Puppy Bowl even chose an MVP (most valuable puppy) at the end of the game and although that other bowl’s MVP had the higher share of voice, Fumble’s presence was felt.

[Fumble Vs. Manning]

 All in all, the Puppy Bowl is gaining in mainstream popularity and although it didn’t have the impressive Social Command Center that the Super Bowl boasted, the addition of @meepthebird was a huge source of engagement. While one can’t argue with the fact that the Super Bowl is the larger attraction, the Puppy Bowl does have one thing going for it: all the puppies hail from shelters and are ready for adoption. You can’t say that about Tom Brady or Eli Manning!



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