Barilla ‘Recipe for togetherness’, Sky Sports ‘greatest show on earth’ and other top creative ads of the week

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Every week I attempt to publish a compilation of clutter-breaking creative ads. It’s just a small tribute to brand teams everywhere who create such work – as being noticed is the first job of any advertising. Here are a few which caught my eye this week:

Barilla: recipe for togetherness

The ill-effects of excessive screen time and our tendency to ignore others in a social or even family setting by staring into our mobile screens is a familiar context for us all. World over, meal times are considered to be ‘family time’ – seen as an opportunity to have conversations and bond with each other. Being distracted by television, streaming shows or mobile phones during such moments is a lost opportunity to bring families & friends together. A new spot from Barilla beautifully captures this sentiment – not by focusing on the people but the sentiment of the ‘objects’ they have left unattended to and uncared for. Loved it.

Agency: LePub

Sky Sports Premier League: greatest show on earth

In sports-themed advertising, whenever brands can afford a huge line up of celebrities the chances of being noticed increases. But mere presence of celebrities does not automatically make for an interesting ad – it needs a central idea and great execution. A new spot from Sky Sports in UK has these in abundance as it showcases all the sporting action available on the platform as a great circus act. Big names from various sports do what they do best with a twist – integrating their ‘act’ with a circus theme. Jaw-dropping production values and a great line up of stars.

Agency: in-house

Budweiser: its not the same without your buds

With a name like Budweiser, one expects a Friendship Day related ad from the brand – especially when the category is considered part of social bonding. A new ‘stunt’ from Canada taps into a universal truth about friendship: we all have a few special friends and sometimes as we grow older we tend to lose touch with each other. The ‘surprise’ element has been done before but the overall idea does strike a chord.

Agency: Anomaly

Oscar Mayer: hot dog legs

In the west, along with summer vacation comes the practice of uploading images of legs framed against a scenic backdrop. This phenomenon jokingly referred to as hot dog legs is imagined literally by a food brand. Amusing and on trend.

Agency: Johannes Leonardo

British Airways: reasons

Running since late 2022, the British Airways campaign ‘Reasons to fly’ has been much celebrated in media. It has also won big at prestigious award shows. A new set of ads have been spotted on social media and they have the same wry humour which brings a smile while driving home the point.

Agency: Uncommon London

Vistaprint: dragon jerky

It’s fantastic to see Maximum Effort churn out outstanding work so consistently. And in almost every ad they demonstrate how brand connections can be made from almost thin air. A new spot for Vistaprint (which helps small businesses by printing promotional material) dramatises what they do by coming up with an imaginary brand called Dragon Jerky – seemingly inspired by seeing their brand on the jerseys of Wrexham AFC, a football club owned by Ryan Reynold who is also the brains behind Maximum Effort. Superb thinking and execution.

Agency: Maximum Effort

Apple: Shot on iPhone

As I have said before, the ‘Shot on iPhone’ idea is a great example of stimulus-response theory in advertising. It showcases what the phone camera do in a way no listing of ‘technical specifications’ can do. A new set of billboards in France are anchored on the Rugby World Cup and have that show stopper effect as outdoor ads.

Agency: TBWA

McDonald’s: raise your arches – the sequel

Can sequels work in advertising? Recently, McDonald’s in UK created an enjoyable ad cueing that ‘its time for a visit to McDonald’s’ by integrating their unique ‘arches’ with the act of raising one’s eyebrows. They are now back with the same visual idea but in a different setting.

Agency: Leo Burnett

Which one was your favourite? Do comment in.

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