Earlier this week, Justin Timberlake asked a simple question: “What are you doing this weekend?” The question accompanied a very brief teaser for his upcoming Bai commercial spot, which will air at the best and most desired time of all, during the Super Bowl.
— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) January 31, 2017
“Justin Timberlake has been a fan of Bai for a long time,” Alana Radmin, VP brand communications for the antioxidant infusion drink brand tells Billboard. “Our CEO and Justin had been talking for a while about how he could get involved with the brand, and the ways we could work together. [Justin] is a very creative guy, he has a lot of thoughts on everything from innovation to marketing content. He really adds a lot of value.”
In addition to becoming a brand ambassador, Timberlake has also been granted the title of first-ever Chief Flavor Officer. His upcoming commercial will not only celebrate but also largely publicize his new role and connection to the brand.
Radmin says Timberlake loved the idea of appearing in a commercial, especially after seeing the success of Bai’s “Horse Whisperer” commercial that ran during last year’s Super Bowl. “Justin knew about that and loved it,” Radmin relates. “He really liked the humor from last year’s campaign.”
This year, though, Bai wanted to go big. “We started talking about what we could do this year in a bigger way. We have Justin, who is the biggest pop star, and what better way to go really big than with a national ad during the Super Bowl, something that we knew was proven to work for us based on last year’s performance? He was excited about it, and was involved every step of the way.”
This year’s spot, called “Jentleman,” will also have comedic appeal, regardless of the straight-faced Timberlake who appears in the teaser. “There’s a serious tone, as well as some humor,” Radmin reveals.
She also says a special guest, someone handpicked by Timberlake, will appear in the spot with him. An obvious guess would be close friend and frequent collaborator Jimmy Fallon. As for whether or not there will be singing in the commercial, Radmin says fans will have to wait and see.
Unlike several other brands often do, Radmin says the decision to refrain from releasing the commercial ahead of time was strategic. “I think there’s a really great element of surprise, and we think it’s so impactful and so special in that way.”
The commercial will air during the second quarter of the Super Bowl, which takes place this Sunday (Feb. 5).