Before wrapping up 2013, let’s take some time to look back that at the year’s most powerful video ads:
Labels Against Women | #ShineStrong – Pantene
This video first aired in the Philippines, but it has reached worldwide acclaim thanks to its clear and effective depiction of the double standard against women. Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s COO and author of women-centric book Lean In, even commended the ad on her Facebook Page stating:
This is one of the most powerful videos I have ever seen illustrating how when women and men do the same things, they are seen in completely different ways.
Holiday – TV Ad – Misunderstood – Apple
Need an ad to warm your cold heart this holiday season? Check out this new TV ad by Apple. Aired to the tune of the classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”, this 90-second advert featuring a teen who’s seemingly obsessed with his iPhone will surely make you cry.
Telekinetic Coffee Shop Surprise – CarrieNYC
We’ve featured this particular ad in an earlier blog post, but it’s just so powerful (and no we’re not just talking about telekinetic powers) that we just had to include it in this roundup. With over 50 million views at the time of writing this, the Telekinetic Coffer Shop Surprise video undoubtedly put the Carrie film in the radar of moviegowers everywhere.
Google Zeitgeist | Here’s to 2013 – Google
While this isn’t such an “in your face” type of advertisement, Google’s annual Zeitgeist videos, which look back on each year’s notable events, can still be considered as ads because they subtly showcase the tech giant’s products. The 2013 version is no different. While it’s not as powerful or touching as the Zeitgeist videos of 2012 and 2013, it manages to stir up some emotion from viewers.
Show Your Joe – Kmart
This ad made our power list because it was able to generate such diverse reactions from viewers. In the video, Kmart showcases the Joe Boxer line by showing six men in boxer shorts jingling their booties to the tune of “Jingle All the Way.” Viewers were generally divided into two categories: one group was thoroughly entertained and said that they would most definitely check the Joe Boxer line at Kmart, while people from the other end of the spectrum were disgusted and vowed never to shop at Kmart again. Either way, the ad brought a lot of publicity for the brand. Great job ringing in the holidays, Kmart.
Volvo Trucks – The Epic Split feat. Van Damme – Volvo
In this video, Jean-Claude Van Damme demonstrated “the most epic of splits” by doing it between two Volvo trucks going in reverse. Meant to “demonstrate the precision and directional stability of Volvo Dynamic Steering” this ad made jaws everywhere drop to the ground. Oh, and did we mention that it was filmed in one take?
Hump Day – Geico
Watch this commercial a few times and you’re bound to have the words “HUUUMMPP DAAAAY” stuck in your head. Produced by the guys at Geico, the insurance company wanted people to know that folks who switch to Geico are happier than a camel on hump day.
What would you do with $25,000 – The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Like the Google’s Zeitgeist videos, this isn’t an in-your-face ad. In fact, it’s not really an ad at all, although it kind of serves the purpose. Film director Casey Neistat was contacted by 20th Century Fox to create a marketing video promoting Ben Stiller’s new film, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. According to the studio, they “wanted to run a campaign under the concept ‘live your dreams’. They wished “to motivate, inspire, and give people a catalyst to do something they’ve never done.” Instead of creating a promotional video though, Neistat decided to use the studio’s budget to help the victims of typhoon Haiyan. This video documents what he was able to accomplish. (And in a way, it also brings attention to the film, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.)
Dove Real Beauty Sketches by Dove
Dove wanted to shed light on the fact that women are their own worst beauty critics, and they have a tendency to see and describe themselves as less attractive than they really are. To do this, the company conducted a social experiment involving an artist producing two sketches: one was based on the women’s own descriptions of themselves, while the other sketch was based off the depictions of other people.
Fireman Saves Kitten – GoPro
A list of great online videos wouldn’t be complete without cats. In another touching video, Fireman Cory Kalanick rescues an unconscious kitten from a burning house filled with smoke, and documents the entire thing using the HD HERO3® from GoPro.
What other powerful marketing videos can you name? Share your thoughts in the comments!