“The ‘Beyonce featuring Coldplay’ performance aside, Sunday’s Super Bowl 50 was more than just a football game—and the show featured more performers than just the teams on the field. It’s no secret: plenty of us are more excited about the commercials than the game. Advertisers know this — and this year, they spent a total of $377 million in TV ads during the Super Bowl, with an average $4.8 million price tag attached to a 30-second spot, according to Ad Age.

Understanding who’s going to get their money’s worth — that is, who’s going to win the Super Bowl (and there will be multiple winners) — means understanding how those exorbitant TV ad prices can build brand both offline and online.

This year’s increase in total Super Bowl ad spend represents about an 8% growth from 2015’s game. It’s also in line with a long-running trend: total Super Bowl ad spending increasing faster and faster, outpacing the growth in TV viewership.

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What changed around the turn of the century — especially in the late 2000s — to fuel the growth in Super Bowl ad spend? One likely answer is the growth of digital audiences. About half of US adults were on social media in 2009, and more than a third had a cellphone in 2011, four years after the launch of the original iPhone.

If that sounds counterintuitive — “how can the rise of digital lead to more in TV spend?” — you might misunderstand the value of TV. As we stated recently, TV is nowhere close to dead. It excels when it comes to delivering brand-building messages and the most effective campaigns are “fame campaigns” that inspire viewers to share their enthusiasm on both digital and offline channels.

We’ve long believed that all of a brand’s channels should be managed in concert; the Super Bowl is one of the best sources of illustrative examples when it comes to TV and digital marketing teams working together to build and cultivate engagement across all media. When this happens effectively, brands get more for their buck thanks to the earned attention they receive.

Some brands don’t think the spend is worth the potential upside, however. Ford said it sat out of the game because it doesn’t need the extra brand awareness. Big game ads “worked in the past when we’ve needed a really big bang — lots of attention, lots of focus — on something that perhaps we needed more awareness on,” said Stephen Odell, Ford’s exec VP-global marketing, sales and service.

GoDaddy CEO Blake Irving expressed a similar viewpoint. “We have 80 percent brand awareness,” he said, explaining why the brand (a regular Super Bowl advertiser) chose not to spend millions to reach a mass audience this year. “We don’t need that megaphone.”

So the question becomes: which Super Bowl ads are bringing in the buzz and attention that make the considerable advertising investment worth it?

Video Streams

It’s too early to distinguish successful, long-term brand building from short-term popularity metrics. That said, there is a top 10, as measured by views on YouTube:

  1. Hyundai: The Chase
  2. Pokémon: #Pokemon20
  3. MINI USA: #DefyLabels
  4. Hyundai: First Date
  5. Mountain Dew: Puppymonkeybaby
  6. Hyundai: Ryanville
  7. Axe: Find Your Magic
  8. Doritos: Crash The Super Bowl Finalist – Ultrasound
  9. Snickers: “Marilyn”
  10. Doritos: Crash The Super Bowl Finalist – Doritos Dogs

YouTube views are a compelling metric because it shows that a “Super Bowl” ad can be much more than that; your millions of dollars are being shared and reviewed beyond the 100 million+ live TV viewers. YouTube states that in 2015, more than 40% of total watch time for Super Bowl ads took place during the weeks after the game.

Reinforcing the point that your ads have a life outside of the Super Bowl: none of the top 10 videos actually debuted on YouTube the day of the game. They each had at least a four-day head start. So they lost some of the shock value the day of the game — but generating buzz is what’s valuable at the end of the day.

But there are other ways to generate a top 10 — especially when some ads have a sneak preview.

Cumulative Campaign Views

For instance, one firm ranked advertisers by online video views of their Super Bowl-related campaigns, rather than strictly by the ads that aired during the game. For instance, Wix.com garnered over 36 million views cumulatively when you take into account ad “teasers” that were released online beforehand. Amazon’s Baldwin Bowl campaign (which came in fourth) also included a teaser, and even a blooper reel. Here’s what the full list looks like:

  1. Wix.Com: #StartStunning
  2. Hyundai: The Chase
  3. Doritos: Crash The Super Bowl Finalist – Ultrasound
  4. Amazon: #BaldwinBowl
  5. Mountain Dew: Puppymonkeybaby
  6. T-Mobile: Restricted Bling
  7. Axe: Find Your Magic
  8. Budweiser: #GiveADamn
  9. Heinz: Wiener Stampede
  10. MINI USA: #DefyLabels

Digital Share of Voice

By yet another measure, the top 10 is reshuffled and other brands emerge. iSpot.TV, which specializes in TV ad performance, ranked advertisers by share of voice online, or the proportion of an ad’s social interactions and earned video views relative to the total generated. This metric is worth considering if you do want to think of the Super Bowl ad blitz as a zero-sum game. The caveat, however, is that not all of those interactions are positive.

For example, sentiment for Mountain Dew’s Puppymonkeybaby is 84% positive. That sounds pretty good, especially for one of the more Kafkaesque commercials that aired that day — but not compared to T-Mobile’s Drop the Balls video at 97% positivity. Yet Mountain Dew took the top slot in the rankings:

  1. Mountain Dew: Puppymonkeybaby
  2. Hyundai: First Date
  3. T-Mobile: Drop the Balls
  4. Hyundai: Ryanville
  5. T-Mobile: Restricted Bling
  6. Heinz: Wiener Stampede
  7. Budweiser: Give a Damn
  8. Pokemon: Pokemon 20
  9. Bud Light: The Bud Light Party
  10. Doritos: Ultrasound

Social Media Following

And one social media analysis firm ranked the game’s advertisers by their growth in social media followers the day of the game. This is an interesting measure because it shows how TV ads can translate directly to a larger, more lasting digital presence.

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It’s worth noting that several of these brands were top performers across multiple social channels (Walt Disney Studios’ film trailers gained traction across all three platforms, as did Pokemon and Coca-Cola). It speaks to both multi-channel brand consistency and building salience through messaging; the majority of the brands above are on Interbrand’s top 100 brands list, which takes into account a brand’s ability to influence customer choice and loyalty.

So to answer the original question — it might never be clear who won the Super Bowl, because there are multiple ways to arrive at the answer. But some combination of engagement with the brand on digital platforms is the smoke that signals a fire.