T-Mobile took a different direction with its Super Bowl ad this year — instead of bashing its wireless rivals, the company made a statement about equality.
The one-minute clip — which sold for around $10 million — pans over a bed of babies with different genders and races. Actress Kerry Washington provides the voiceover.
“Welcome the world, little ones,” Washington narrates. “Yeah, it’s a lot to take in. But you come with open minds and the instinct that we are equal. Some people may see your differences and be threatened by them. But you are unstoppable. You’ll love who you want; you’ll demand fair and equal pay; you will not allow where you come from to dictate where you’re going. You will be heard, not dismissed. You will be connected, not alone. Change starts now.”
This year, we wanted to use our #SuperBowl airtime to share that @TMobile believes we all started in the same place. We are more alike than different. And we are unstoppable. pic.twitter.com/piNDVYloAN
— John Legere (@JohnLegere) February 5, 2018
One of my biggest wishes for my kids was for them to grow up feeling unstoppable! It’s something everyone deserves!! And it’s something we believe in at @TMobile!! It’s why we listen to our customers. pic.twitter.com/DYA3fiRRxQ
— Mike Sievert (@SievertMike) February 5, 2018
AdAge reported that T-Mobile originally planned to take aim at other wireless carriers with the ad — typical of the Bellevue-based company in the past— but changed its mind.
— Ad Age (@adage) February 5, 2018
The ad sparked immediate reaction on Twitter.
We don’t see it as controversial. We wanted to use our airtime to make a simple point: We are more alike than different. *PatrickUllmann
— T-Mobile (@TMobile) February 5, 2018
T-Mobile, which reports 62 percent of its workforce as minorities and 42 percent female, used the messaging in a tweet directing people to its careers site.
Change starts now. Are you with us?https://t.co/i1lXiJ0Ko6
— T-Mobile Careers (@tmobilecareers) February 5, 2018
T-Mobile stood out among this year’s Super Bowl advertisers, which stayed away from potentially polarizing messages.
Last year T-Mobile’s Super Bowl ads had a lighter tone, starring celebrities like Justin Bieber, Snoop Dogg, and Martha Stewart. The company had one of the top Super Bowl ads in 2016 when it featured music star Drake.