Specsavers, TAG Heuer Carrera & more: creative ads of the week

Anybody can be a critic of advertising. But that’s not the toughest part of the business – getting noticed is. A small number of creative ads manage to break through the clutter and get noticed. A fewer number of these go on to be recalled and talked about in a positive way. My weekly column of creative ads is a small tribute to brand teams everywhere who produce entertaining, engaging and relevant creative work. These were some of the ads which caught my eye this week:

Specsavers: fishing

‘Should’ve gone to Specsavers’ is not just a great tagline but a brand idea that is timeless and suitable for so many campaign ideas and memes. A bit like Mastercard’s ‘priceless’ property, regular folks have also created content with it – showing the power of the idea. A new spot from Canada, uses the same theme in its trademark humorous context, dramatising the perils of ‘not going to Specsavers’.

Woodie’s: Meet Larry

Some in India might recall the famous ‘Digen Verma’ campaign for Frooti from a couple of decades ago. It created a fictional character giving him a build up across teasers and a reveal. A new spot for a DIY store called Woodie’s reminded me a bit of that – albeit a lot understated. Larry is not who you think it would be.

Hanes: make yourself comfortable

Inner wear brands normally focus on the comfort quotient of their wares. A new spot from Hanes is a nod to its heritage, dating back from 1901. What makes it interesting is the contrast of the stuffy, uncomfortable setting of that era and the transition to easy comfort – helped by Blondie’s Heart of Glass as a background track.

Agency: The Martin Agency

Tag Heuer: the chase for Carrera

A luxury watch fits the bill to be an ‘object of desire’. To those who can afford such, these become must-haves transcending any rational reason for ownership or affinity. A new film to mark the 60th anniversary of Tag Heuer Carrera has actor Ryan Gosling inventing reasons to not return the watch after a shoot. The ad-inside-an ad format of the film makes it interesting alongside the humorous exchanges. Sometimes people glance at the duration of a YouTube ad choose not to watch it – but this 5-min film is totally worth the time.

Got Milk?: wood milk

The iconic milk-moustache campaign, ‘Got Milk?’ encouraged milk consumption over the years. But times have changed now and even the dairy industry has its detractors. A new ad for Got Milk? poked fun at plant-based milk alternatives as ‘not real milk’ (I quite liked the creative idea) but that apparently has riled many.

Shaken Udder: do what makes you happy

Not all ads which are noticed or are entertaining have a unique creative idea. Sometimes, it’s the execution elements – a jingle, signature dance or quirky dialogue which makes an ad enjoyable. Here’s one such ad from Shaken Udder milk shake – an ad which can work for any other food & beverage brand.

BBC Eurovision: official trailer

Another film which is all style – a new trailer for Eurovision dramatises the various quirky ways in which people prepare for the contest.

PhonePe: no unwanted add-ons

These set of ads are among the handful which stand out in the clutter of ads seen during the IPL. I quite liked the dramatisation of the proposition – that you have a way of not being forced to accept unwanted add-ons with insurance purchased on PhonePe.

Cadbury: ingredients

A seemingly boring ingredient (on its own) such as an oat, raisin or nut is made interesting if infused in chocolate is the simple proposition in these set of spots from Cadbury, UK.

Agency: VCCP

New York Times: more of life brought to life

Many a times, I have wondered about the sticky nature of the web. While endless & mindless surfing is common, some well-produced articles have smartly placed links which encourage continuous clicks – and stumbling upon articles of interest. Merely placing links (leading to pages of that key word) or sponsored ads under an article (as seen in most news portals from India) is no guarantee of clicks. But contextual links which give more relevant information about a subject can help in holding reader interest. A new spot for NYT beautifully dramatises this point.

Agency: Droga5

Fastrack: necessary not accessory

While the ads by themselves may not be rip-roaringly funny, I quite liked the idea of positioning accessories such as sunglasses as ‘necessary’.

Persil: Dirt is good

Interesting to see Persil promote another group company brand, Knorr in its famous ‘Dirt is good’ campaign.

Switzerland Tourism: the ride of a lifetime

After Robert de Niro and Anne Hathaway, Roger Federer now teams up with comedian Trevor Noah in this banter-filled film for Switzerland Tourism which subtly showcases all the positive associations (such as punctuality) of the brand. Loved it.

Le Chocolat des Français: too beautiful to be opened

During creative ideation, a common technique is to stretch the benefit. If a watch aims to promote its slim design, then imagining or completing the sentence ‘it is so slim that…’ can lead to creative ideas (remember the Titan Edge ‘barcode’ ad?). A new campaign from Le Chocolat des Français dramatises its beautiful packaging by claiming that it is so beautiful that one can be forgiven for not opening it at all. Superbly crafted, illustration driven ads drive home the point with some humour.

Agency: TBWAParis

Which one was your favourite? Do comment in.

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