12 creative ads from the archives

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Every week I attempt to share a few clutter-breaking creative ads. Occasionally, I comment on industry trends and topics. This week, there weren’t very many new ads of note. So herewith an assortment of ads, new & old (from my vast collection of ads).

Brands have come to see every occasion or major news event as an opportunity to advertise. The current Coronavirus global crisis is no different. As this article points out, ‘many are saying the right things, some are doing extraordinary things while a few have put their foot in their mouth.’

Among the ads which were relevant for the times and the brand being advertised, these two stood out for me:

Nike: play inside

Nike has consistently invested in ‘Just Do It’ as the brand theme for decades. A key visual element of the communication is outdoor activity. In today’s context, they have kind of reversed that stand by urging consumers to stay indoor.

The Hindu: milk a cow

A media brand urging advertisers not to see the current health crisis as an opportunity to be milked is conveyed in a tongue-in-cheek manner here.

Agency: Ogilvy

I hooked up my external hard disk and picked a few random old ads to share.

Shutterstock: versatility

A campaign aimed at the creative community in ad agencies, positions Shutterstock, the stock image brand’s images as suitable for many categories of brands. For example, image of a broken vase could be apt for an insurance brand, a florist and more.

Michelin: content marketing

Way before ‘content marketing‘ was in vogue, Michelin tyres published the ‘Michelin Guide’ – a restaurant guide for commuters in Europe. This kind of content asset giveaway is also common in B2B marketing nowadays for lead generation.

Colgate: close the tap

A powerful way to highlight water wastage in households. Relevant for the brand in a tangential way perhaps, but still attention-grabbing.

Elm Grove Police: speed limit

A smart use of the outdoor medium to educate consumers on the perils of over-speeding through a visual pun of numbers.

Currys PC World: pictures like a pro

A typical tongue-in-cheek campaign from UK to promote a range of professional cameras from an electronics outlet.

Guinness: phones down

A tactical ad, year unknown cueing the famous glass shape.

Incredible India: UK posters

Marketing a country brand can be challenging. Consumers usually set aside a budget and have a short list of countries or locales they’d like to travel to. Getting into the consideration set depends on the country or region’s perception which can be driven by current events, media coverage, portrayal in pop culture and so on.

The brand – in this case the country or region, has to live up to the promise made in the advertising. The on-ground experience of that promise has to be executed by several stakeholders who may have nothing to do with the advertising – the facilities at the airport. immigration officer, the cab driver, hotel staff, tourist guide – all come into play. The accessibility, infrastructure facilities and cleanliness of tourist places also play a role. In this context, ‘Incredible India’ is a lofty promise and the country’s diversity in every aspect – from the kind of monuments & landmarks to food and languages live up to the promise. A campaign in the UK dramatises that experience through word play on movie titles.

TUI: tip of the iceberg

A clever visual pun and the well-understood ‘tip of the iceberg’ adage to convey that there’s more to see in a country than that one destination everybody knows. If India were to be represented, would it be the Taj Mahal?

KitKat Mini: puzzles

A clever way to bring alive the ‘Have a break. Have a KitKat’ promise to announce their mini variant.

Liberty Foundation: fund raising

We’ve all heard rags to riches stories in business & sports. Many of them have achieved success through sheer hard work, perseverance and talent. They also had the much-needed luck in the form of someone spotting their talent. A campaign for Liberty Foundation taps into people’s inherent goodness to help find such talent.

Which one was your favourite? Comment in.

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