Super Bowl ads make digital splash

Would we really be an ad agency if we didn’t discuss the commercial victors of Super Bowl LII? The options were anything but limited. For a full review, check out Ad Age’s break down.

Meanwhile, we will be showcasing the digital buzz surrounding the ads provided by the partnership of Ad Age and, a real-time TV ad measurement company with attention and conversion analytics for more than seven million smart TVs.

Below are a list of rankings that give particulare weight to earned online views and social impressions. iSpot’s data shows that Super Bowl ads generated more than 84 million views across Facebook and YouTube on game day alone; a bulk of that being nearly 51 million of the unpaid/earned views on YouTube. Engagement (including mentions and shares) with those ads also generated about 805.7 million social impressions during the big game.

Game Day Totals


TV Ad Impressions


Earned Online Views


Social Impressions






Show Promos

Top Ads by Digital Share of Voice

Excluding movie trailers & show promos

1 Doritos & Mountain Dew: Battle

17.26% Digital Share of Voice

Doritos Blaze Image

Key Stats
TV Ad Impressions: 72,634,205
Earned Online Views: 1,143,039
Social Impressions: 78,315,883

2 Amazon Echo: Alexa Loses Her Voice

12.49% Digital Share of Voice

Amazon Echo Image

Key Stats
TV Ad Impressions: 81,225,165
Earned Online Views: 8,045,717
Social Impressions: 4,527,919

3 NFL: Touchdown Celebrations

 11.28% Digital Share of Voice

NFL TD Celebration Image

Key Stats
TV Ad Impressions: 69,280,322
Earned Online Views: 464,842
Social Impressions: 20,522,569

4 Pepsi: This Is the Pepsi

 8.09% Digital Share of Voice

Pepsi Song Image

Key Stats
TV Ad Impressions: 64,827,355
Earned Online Views: 3,932,985
Social Impressions: 5,639,978

5 Tide: It’s a Tide Ad

5.45% Digital Share of Voice
Tide Ad Image
Key Stats
TV Ad Impressions: 67,198,290
Earned Online Views: 763,721
Social Impressions: 26,747,404
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Advertising agency creates reality TV show

Room 2 Grow Logo

As Hollywood continues to set up shop in Pittsburgh, a local advertising agency is taking a crack at the reality TV biz

Apple Box Studios partnered up with a local artist and his wife to create the pilot episode of Room 2 Grow, a new reality TV series that shot in November and will be ready for distribution March 2018.

Christopher and Stacy Galiyas tried for several years to have a child. They finally found success through a local fertility clinic. And when it came Reality TV stars Chris and Stacy with son Arrowtime to learn the gender, they made it count. This life chapter sparked the idea behind Room 2 Grow, the half-hour reality TV series that takes the gender reveal phenomenon to the next level. Christopher is the creative visionary. Stacy is the voice of reason who keeps it all together while balancing work, family, and her husband’s non-stop schedule.

Each episode will feature a new couple with a story to tell. They will discuss their journey, overcoming life challenges, how they met, and the excitement of their newest family addition.

Helping the soon-to-be parents through the uncertainty of starting a family is the inspiration for the work that follows. Christopher and Stacy are the only ones aware of the baby’s gender. They aren’t just turning a room into a nursery.  They are transforming it into a magical and poignant space filled with meaning.

This show can be featured on a wide variety of networks such as, A&E, Bravo, HGTV, Lifetime, and other family channels. We are creating the pilot now and will soon be pitching it to networks.

This is much more than a home improvement show. Room 2 Grow is about the bonds of family, our hopes and dreams for the future and the opportunity of a lifetime.


Room 2 Grow is produced by Apple Box Motion Arts, LLC

Principal photography: November 2017 in association with Apple Box Studios Inc.

Available for Distribution: March, 2018

©2017 Apple Box Motion Arts, LLC

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Biggest Ad Campaign Fails of 2017

Before we kick off with what 2018 has in store for advertising, let’s review some of the 2017 marketing disasters

We bet you instantly though Pepsi and Kendall Jenner. And you wouldn’t be wrong. That was indeed one of the biggest campaign fumbles in the past decade. But let us joggle through your memory and bring to light a few other flub-ups that would like to be forgotten.

Pepsi/Kendall Jenner

Trying to use Black Lives Matter to sell sugary soft drinks shouldn’t sound like a good idea. And it wasn’t. In Pepsi’s Content Creators League commercial, the model ditches a photoshoot to join a march happening on the street. Jenner saves the day when she hands a police officer a can of Pepsi. It was crucified on social media, mocked on SNL, and ultimately pulled from air. Advertising agencies seized the opportunity to say something like this would have never happened had a shop been involved. (And they’re right). PepsiCo Global Beverage Group President Brad Jakeman left six months later to form a consultancy, and told Ad Age the spot was “the most gut-wrenching experience of my career.”


People were not lovin’ the McDonald’s U.K. Filet O’Fish campaign. A commercial from Leo Burnett showed a young boy sorrowfully asking his mom about his deceased father. After a long minute and fifteen seconds of the boy learning he’s the exact opposite of his dad, it’s revealed they shared a McFavorite for the Filet O’Fish. Hook line and sinker for the haters who said this was exploiting bereavement to sell sandwiches.

Big Tobacco

This campaign fails worldwide. Big Tobacco agreed to run anti-smoking ads on TV for the first time since 1971 as a consequence of the cigarette industry’s master settlement agreement. The campaign began in November and are the least convincing you will ever see. Plain black text on a white background with mandated warnings.

Fragrance Ads In General

Granted some aren’t awful, but Chanel may have been huffing something other than perfume. Its Gabrielle fragrance campaign shows Kristen Stewart unraveling herself from a cocoon of sheer to then punch through a wall of diamond-like substance all to the soundtrack “Runnin’ (Lose It All)” by The Naughty Boy. Aren’t they paying women in Hollywood enough these days?


Click here to see AdAge’s full article with more campaign fails.

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Video Production: Sound Editing vs. Sound Mixing

Exploring The Art of Sound Editing & Mixing

Who watches the award shows and says to themselves: “I have no idea what any of these categories are?” You are not alone! Other than Best Supporting Actress and Best Director, many Oscar and SAG award categories are not self-explanatory. As a video production agency, we thought we’d break down one category we do know a thing or two about: sound mixing and sound editing. (Yes, technically these are two separate categories. You caught us!)

The difference between sound mixing and sound editing may be obvious to a group of people who frequently dabble in post production but we understand we are not the majority. So in honor of award season, here is one category explained. The rest you need to figure out for yourself.

Sound Editing

For Michael Bay-esque blockbusters sound editing can involve more than one person. The lead sound editor is in charge of deciding what you hear in movies, but there are several different roles involved with finding, recording and picking the right sounds for a movie. A sound editor is also in charge of choosing the right sound effects, dialogue, ADR, foley effects and music, as well as assembling all of the pieces into the film’s final cut. After all the elements are in place, the next step is mixing and blending levels,

Here are a few of the Oscar nominees for Best Sound Editing:


Sound Editing Oscar Nomination for LA LA LAND

1.) La La Land

Sound Editing Oscar Nomination for DEEPWATER HORIZON

2.) Deepwater Horizon

Sound Editing Oscar Nomination for SULLY

3.) Sully


Sound Mixing

Sound mixing is another post production process, but it occurs after sound editing. The sound mixer tweaks levels on every audio file, which affects everything the audience hears including dialogue, sound effects, foley effects and the score.

Here are a few of the Oscar nominees for Best Sound Mixing:

Best Sound Mixing Nominee ARRIVAL

1.) Arrival

Best Sound Mixing Nominee ROGUE ONE A Star Wars Story

2.) Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Sound Mixing Nominee HACKSAW RIDGE

3.) Hacksaw Ridge

What do you think? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!

*information for this blog was pulled from “Sound Editing vs. Sound Mixing: What’s The Difference” (Premium Beat blog)

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3 Best SuperBowl Ads of 2017

Boxers Discuss Best SuperBowl Commercials

We couldn’t call ourselves an ad agency if our staff didn’t gather together on February 6th to discuss the wins and the losses. And we’re not talking about the game.

This year, the line-up of brands attempting to make a name for themselves included humorous, heartfelt,  and (a few) political messages. Not everyone achieved what they set out to do, but we do have to give them accolades! The SuperBowl is filled with some pretty tough critics with some of the biggest critics coming delivering feedback to some Pittsburgh companies. The first Pittsburgh company with SuperBowl controversy was 84 Lumber and their “Wall” ad. Rejected by Fox for being “too political”, 84 Lumber achieved a national attention for being told to revise their SuperBowl spot. Demonstrating the toughness proclaimed in their name, 84 Lumber created a slightly “less political” spot, but still encouraged the audience to view the original on a separate site. After a few “minor” web issues, the site is up and running and 84 Lumber gained the brand recognition they were searching for.

84 Lumber’s SuperBowl Spot (Part 1 & 2):

84 Lumber SuperBowl Ad

GNC was also in SuperBowl spotlight, but they did not get the same happy ending as 84 Lumber. Unaware that being placed on the NFL’s list of banned substances would prevent them from submitting spot, GNC was not able to achieve SuperBowl glory this year.

Without further ado here are our favorites … and not so favorites of SuperBowl 51:

3 Favorite SuperBowl Ads:

Christopher Walken and Justin Timberlake for Bai SuperBowl Ad

1.) Christopher Walken & Justin Timberlake for Bai

The perfect blending of the old and the new. With their classic 90s twist on a new product, Bai earned it’s way to the top of SuperBowl ad list.

Avocados are delicious SuperBowl Ad

2.) #AvoSecrets | Avocados from Mexico

You don’t have to “agree to disagree” about how awesome this ad was! If their message was “avocados are delicious”, it was received loud and clear.

Mr. Clean SuperBowl Ad

3.) Mr. Clean

Let’s face it ladies: your fantasy is a husband willing to assist you in house chores. Using their already well-recognized brand, Mr. Clean mopped its way into our list of top SuperBowl ads.

3 Not-So Favorite Ads:

Not So Favorite SuperBowl Ad from Mobile Strike

1.) Mobile Strike

Raise your hand if you don’t understand what video ads are doing in the SuperBowl!

Not-So Favorite SuperBowl Ad from Turkish Airlines

2.) Turkish Airlines

Although we love a good Morgan Freeman, cameo this one was a little lost on us.

Not-So Favorite SuperBowl Ad featuring Olivia Munn for Towel Drop

3.) Olivia Munn: Towel Drop

Again, just because you can use a celebrity spokesperson, doesn’t mean you should.

Honorable Mention:

Honorable Mention SuperBowl Ad from Getaway Car

Getaway Car: It’s Not Surprising

Okay, okay, we know this aired the day after, but, after you watch it, you’ll see why we thought it should have aired during the big game!

What do you think? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!


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Optimize Your Video Production quality

You Must Watch Before You Proceed:

Dr. Bob Wagstaff Orabrush inventor video

Two big words in video are production and value.  What does production value mean?  Often there is a negative financial connotation associated with that phrase, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that a lot of money has to be spent.  It’s nothing tangible or monetary, you just know it when you see it.  There’s this great fear that you need a high budget to get production value out of your video.  It’s just not true.  Video production and value can be masked by intelligence, preparation, and hard work.  And it can most certainly be masked by creativity.  It’s possible to make something stylish and attractive, yet affordable.  There are plenty of great examples of work done affordably that give the impression of high production value.  And they can come from a video company right here in Pittsburgh.  It doesn’t have to be Hollywood or New York.   Our advice is watch films and videos.  Watch them closely.  Mimic them.  Emulate them.  We benchmark every video project we work on with our clients.  It’s a valuable form of communication.  Sometimes you can’t describe a transition, or an effect.  Find the videos that can represent your vision and let them guide you, ultimately making them your own.

5 Commercials With Low Budgets & Amazing Production Value

The original OraBrush video

1.) The original “OraBrush” YouTube commercial that made this product a house hold name. If you don’t remember from the first video, we’ll reiterate: this video cost a couple of HUNDRED dollars.

Humorous video showing production value at its finest and lowest cost!

2.) This company had humorous take on their low budget and it landed them over a million views in 2011 … and it’s still going!

Embrace Life, always wear your seat belt commercial

3.) This UK low-budget advert won the Gold World Medal at the New York Festival of International Advertising Awards. The competition in this category included Starbucks & Nike.

Blendtec commercial

4.) Demonstrations are the best way to show off and Blendtec made its way into our newsfeeds & timelines by showing how nothing (not even Justin Bieber) stands up to the indestructible power of his product.

OK GO video on treadmills

5.) After borrowing treadmills from a treadmill company, OK GO found success with this awesome music video and killer choreography. All for the low low price of … well, we’re not really sure, but it can’t have been much!

On the opposite side of the video spectrum, we’ll throw out two more words – double rainbow.  We all most likely know what that means.  If not, Google it.  It will take you 3 seconds to get in on the joke.  Regardless, production value can be thrown out the window if you have the right gimmick, gag, or just good timing.  Viral videos oversaturate already oversaturated social media & web sites.  But, they are harmless & they are here to stay.  People can’t get enough of them.  They hit some nerve.  I guess it’s human nature to share, to create, to vent, to be bored, to participate, to be honest, to connect, to express, to inspire.  All qualities we would never want to extinguish and all goals we try to achieve while creating.  So while we continue to look for production value out there, there are many more double rainbows.  If the desired result of your creation is accomplished, it doesn’t matter which.

Do you know of any amazing low budget commercials? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!

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Video Production Projects

Apple Box Studios is pleased to share commercials produced for our client, Northwood Realty Services. As a video production agency, Apple Box is committed to creating stunning motion pictures that help our clients get noticed in the market place.

Check Out The Videos:


Video Production Project



Video Production Project

We had a great day on set with the Northwood agents playing themselves and our film crew:

On Set Memories:

Apple Box Video Crew on set of shoot

To see more samples of our work, visit our Facebook page!


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“Henry” Wins A “Henry” Tourism Award

We are so thrilled to share the news that Apple Box’s tourism video, “Henry Brings Business to Tampa Bay”, has received a “Henry” in the Flagler Awards for Tourism Advocacy.

Check Out The Video:


Produced for Visit Tampa Bay, this short animated video details the multimillion dollar impact convention business has on the Tampa Bay economy. The Flagler Award recognizes the best work by the states destination marketing organizations. The highest honor in each category is called a “Henry”. This is the first time in Visit Tampa Bay’s history that they have won this award.

Visit Tampa Bay Awards Ceremony

The video is based off of the original tourism video Apple Box produced for Visit Pittsburgh, which also received a Silver Telly Award in 2013. The Silver Telly is the highest honor at The Telly Award and less than 10% of entries are chosen as winners.

Watch The Original Tourism Video:

VisitPittsburgh Tourism Video


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Our Newest ANSYS Video

Apple Box's Latest Video Project For ANSYS

By now, you’ve probably heard of the “Internet of Things“: the global nervous system connecting over two hundred billion smart devices. Our client, ANSYS, is using the internet of things to help engineer the “connected soldier” for the U.S. military. ANSYS engineering simulation solutions will help create a more connected soldier with increased situational, environmental and health awareness.

Apple Box Studios recently produced this 3-minute video, which provides an overview of ANSYS simulation capabilities related to the incredibly complex engineering and design challenges faced by the defense industry.

Check out the video to see how ANSYS technology is making the soldier of tomorrow a reality:

ANSYS Video: Internet of Things


What do you think? Share your thoughts on this video on our Facebook page!

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The Video Viewer Experience

How To Take Your Video Marketing To The Next Level

You just hit “Render” on your latest video production project. It’s perfect. No … take that back. It’s spectacular! The voice over was spot-on, the tagline at the end is more poetic than Shakespeare and the motion graphics are a sight to behold. There’s no way your client is not going to love it! Social media is going to crazy when you post this video project to the web.

Well, you hope so. They will go nuts. If they can find it and if it’s easy to watch.

Your video content is only as good as the viewer experience you provide for your audience. You could have the most fantastic, award-winning, video production piece, but if it is not accessible you might as well be trying to whisper during a rock ‘n roll concert.

Positive view experiences mean better engagement, higher viewing time and a greater chance that your business objective will be served. How do you achieve the ultimate viewer experience? By controlling how easily your viewers find, watch and take action on a particular video, you can continue to create a masterful viewer experience.

Enhancing the viewer experience with video marketing

4 Core Elements of Viewer Experience

1. Search & Discoverability

Easy navigation and exploration within the video itself are crucial to crafting a “lean – in” experience. A “lean in” is described as active engagement of the viewer and timeline control of their experience. By actively searching for key terms inside the timeline, you can achieve the best “lean in” experience.

2. Specific Content

The best way to provide your audience with the most specific content is to create an automatic association between the video and relevant content with an in-depth knowledge of the metadata surrounding a video and, also, within it. The result is increased relevance of the content, which in turn increases the amount of time that is spent on your site and content.

3. Social Sharing

Video is great content to share on social media … unless it’s too long. Most business-based videos face this problem, especially in the case of product launch pieces. Usually longer videos are accompanied with a note like “Start 2:21”, but you can make social sharing more efficient by posting a video snippet.

4. Calls to Action

As marketers, we are all familiar with calls to action and how vital they are to reaching business objectives. By leveraging a video’s metadata, it’s possible to create dynamic calls to action that can take viewers to subsequent relevant actions. Content owners are then able to track and analyze viewers’ actions to determine which CTAs should be used to enhance the viewer experience.

What do you think? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!


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