As we approach the end of the year, we want to pay tribute to some of the ads that had a powerful effect on us. Some of them are emotional and some are funny, but one thing remains consistent from ad to ad: great storytelling. As you’ll see in the examples below, great storytelling makes an emotional impact and pulls the viewer into the brand to entice them to learn more. Each of these ads did that in some way, and for that reason, they were some of the most memorable of 2016.
1. Muscle Milk: Lean On Me
In “Lean on Me”, sports nutrition brand Muscle Milk features Clay Matthews as he helps athletes perform better in a series of situations. The spot developed by agency Mekanism is a part of the “Stronger Everyday” campaign. The goal of the humorous ad is to illustrate Muscle Milk’s promise of helping people live and perform better. It also shows that protein is not only about muscles and intense workouts, but it’s also an essential part of any diet for both professional athletes and The Everyman.
The message of the ad is clear: When someone as athletic and strong as Clay Matthews isn’t around to help, you can lean on Muscle Milk to get you through your training.
2. Hyundai: First Date
Never trust a father who offers to give the keys of his new car. “First Date”, which features comedian Kevin Hart, was the winner of USA Today’s annual poll of favorite Super Bowl spots. The humorous video created by Innocean shows how far a dad can go to protect his daughter by depicting a dad who tails his daughter as she is out on a date.
The goal of the ad is to highlight the new Car Finder feature on the Hyundai Genesis, that allows owners to track location of their cars, and to promote the brand’s motto: “We make things better.”
3. Emirates: Jennifer Aniston Emirates A380
This is the second video of Emirates for its Airbus A380 featuring actress Jennifer Aniston. In the ad, Jennifer Aniston befriends a young boy and walks through the plane with him in search of the boy’s parents. The video was created by WPP Team Air. It pulls the viewer into the story with a catchy storyline while demonstrating the features of Emirates A380. The scene of the luxurious seats, bars, and game consoles displayed in the video makes the viewer want to fly with Emirates, wherever the destination is.
4. Macy’s: Old Friends
“Old Friends”—created by BBH New York—is a heartwarming ad that celebrates the 90th anniversary of the most popular holiday parade in America, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. The video follows one man’s connection to the parade throughout his life, from the 1920s to today. The goal of the ad is to highlight the magical ability of the parade to bring people together and show how it has an intimate and emotional memory in the lives of people who watched it.
5. TD Ameritrade: A U.S. Olympian’s Mission to Medal
The “Mission to Medal” spot is a great example of connecting with consumers emotionally. The ad is part of the #LikeYou Olympic campaign in which TD Ameritrade teamed up with The U.S. Olympic Team to support and mentor four athletes who are striving to qualify for the 2020 Games in Tokyo. The campaign—which ranked as one of the most emotionally compelling Rio Olympic ads—features the hard work and daily challenges that athletes face on their quest for gold. The video humanizes Olympic athletes and shows us the struggles and tedious work behind becoming the best athlete in the world. The message of the campaign is to show us that these four athletes have everyday goals just like we do, whether that be buying a home or sending kids to college.
At ViralGains, we are fans of good content and we believe in the power of stories to create successful video campaigns. Ads should engage the viewer and focus on what people want to hear and share. So far, these were the top five ads that made us laugh—and sometimes made us teary-eyed—but definitely influenced us in some way. What all those videos have in common is the great usage of story integrated with brand and product. We can’t wait to add new videos to this list next year. Cheers to a year of amazing storytelling!
What are your favorite ads? Let us know in the comments!