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High Hopes for Intuit's Super Bowl Ad Giveaway

High Hopes for Intuit's Super Bowl Ad Giveaway
Photograph by Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Someone at Intuit had a clever idea. Instead of spending marketing dollars to promote the company’s own brands, which include popular small business accounting software QuickBooks, Intuit would buy a Super Bowl ad slot and give it to a small business owner. (Last year, 30 seconds went for about about $4 million.) Intuit would bask in good will, and hopefully, earned media. Everyone’s a winner.

Everyone, including a prominent advocate for legalizing marijuana. Intuit invited small business owners to post online videos sharing their company’s stories, then asked the public to vote for their favorite. Currently in first place: Norml, a nonprofit that wants to make marijuana legal.