Tim Calkins

Heather Fletcher is senior content editor with Target Marketing.

Even pessimistic marketing thought leaders believe more than 100 million viewers caught the Super Bowl ads. For marketers like SunTrust Banks and Mercedes-Benz, it’s been the best place to announce initiatives that can then live on other marketing channels.

Call it the “second-screen” Super Bowl. About two-thirds of smartphone and tablet owners use their gadgets to do things like text or post on Twitter while watching TV, according to research firm Nielsen. So, for Sunday’s game, companies from Coke to Chevy are trying to reach fans on all the “second screens” they have. Chevrolet rolled out the first Super Bowl smartphone app that allows Big Game watchers to enter a contest to win everything from pizza to a new Camaro. Kia is the first company to show its Super Bowl ad ahead of the game in movie theaters.

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