Place your bets: It’s Facebook vs. Twitter in the Super Bowl

Alas, the San Francisco 49ers won’t be playing in this Sunday’s Super Bowl. But some hometown names have stakes in the big game.

• First up, Facebook, which hopes to outscore Twitter as viewers’ “second screen” of choice. People tweet while they watch TV, providing running commentary for the amusement or annoyance of others. They also do the same on Facebook, but Twitter has been the place to be for real-time Super Bowl talk — did you see that touchdown; LOL, that commercial was lame; etc. — for the past couple of years, according to Reuters. But this year, the world’s largest social network befriended broadcaster Fox, so prepare to see public chatter on Facebook and Instagram as part of its TV coverage.

What’s in it for Menlo Park-based Facebook? All the better to serve you some ads, my dear. Among other things, Facebook will be using those posts to gain insight about viewer demographics, and passing it along to advertisers.

• Twitter has also been doing some conditioning in preparation for the big game, in the form of offering free consulting to advertisers to show them how to leverage its flood of data. The Wall Street Journal says Twitter is trying to persuade companies to pay for advertising on its platform, as opposed to using unpaid tweets as a marketing tool. Some companies have already bought into the power of tweets: Unilever is spending more than half a million dollars on its Super Twitter Sunday, according to the WSJ.

• What’s will all the social talk? An Adobe marketing report points out that not every business has millions of dollars to spend on a TV commercial Sunday. But those who can afford online-only campaigns hope to capture viewers as they check Facebook and Twitter and surf the Web in between gulping down a beer or two.

• Finally, as Heather Somerville reported, Oakland-based toy maker GoldieBlox will have a 30-second commercial during the third quarter of the game Sunday. GoldieBlox, which had another commercial that prompted a legal fight with the Beastie Boys, won an Intuit-sponsored contest, beating out tens of thousands of other small businesses. The going rate for a 30-second spot: $4 million.


Photo: MetLife Stadium, site of this Sunday’s Super Bowl XLVIII, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Denver Broncos will be playing against the Seattle Seahawks. (John Moore/Getty Images)


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