On Sunday Night the Super Bowl becoming the most watched television show in US history pulling in 47.5 per cent of US households – or 114.4 million viewers. Katy Perry’s half time show drew an extraordinary 118.5 million people.

As always attention drifted from the game and the spotlight fell on the brands that chose to spend $4.5million for a 30 second slot. This year it seems Nationwide scored an own goal. Their ad centred on a young boy listing all the things he wouldn’t do, like ride a bike, because he had tragically died in an avoidable accident. Whilst on the surface of it, the brand scored well on social media being the second most mentioned company online, more than three quarters of the conversations were disapproving.

It remains to be seen whether the negativity from the deemed inappropriate messaging will have a lasting impact. From our experience at Millennium Data poor advertising can have a very long tail. For example we discovered that 87 per cent of people would cease trading with a company that targeted a family member that had a passed away – something that happens all too often when organisations fail to keep their data up-to-date. For Nationwide, errors of judgement over content are more easily forgiven, for brands that fail to suppress it’s the end of the road.