We asked HZers to share their favorite ads and talk about what makes them so memorable. The responses highlight how impactful a great piece of creative can be.
Michael Robbins, Senior Interactive Designer
THE BRAND: Cadbury
THE AD: “A glass and a half full of joy” campaign (2007)
THE REASON: The entire series full of delightfully bizarre concepts, but this is the one that stands out. It's the details that make it—the gorilla just feels the music so much! At 0:43 when the camera gets a little too close and he sneers and flexes a bit? Perfect.
Wendy Greenberg, UX Designer
THE BRAND: Levi’s
THE AD: “Go Forth” campaign (2009)
THE REASON: Wieden-Kennedy captured the mood in America during the recession so perfectly. You don't even realize it's a commercial for jeans until the Levi's logo flashes at the end. This is one of the ads that made me want to get in to the biz.
Zac Anderson, Jr. Copywriter
THE BRAND: Volkswagen
THE AD: “The Force” TV spot (2011)
THE REASON: This ad spans generations. It's clean, clever, and fun. Plus, I'm pretty sure we can all relate to this kid—who didn't want Force powers growing up?
Brigitte Connell, Brand Strategist
THE BRAND: Always
THE AD: “Like a Girl” TV spot (2015)
THE REASON: I got in to this business with the intention of working with purpose-driven brands that are taking real steps to make a difference in the world. This ad reminded me that you don't need to be UNICEF or the Red Cross to do that.
Brian Pasco, Digital Marketing Manager
THE BRAND: Ikea
THE AD: “Unboring” TV spot (2002)
THE REASON: This was one of the first spots I can remember that turned advertising into entertainment. Ikea doesn't do a whole lot in the way of advertising, but this ad is still engrained in my memory, which goes to show the power of quality advertising.
Craig Viera, Digital Content Manager
THE BRAND: Snickers
THE AD: “Can I Help You Enjoy That?” TV spot (2008)
THE REASON: This TV spot is almost a decade old and it’s still hysterical every time. It's wonderfully bizarre without feeling gimmicky. When I’m writing something meant to be funny, I try to ask myself, "Will the humor still check out after the 3rd or 4th time you see it?"
Megan Walsh, Copywriter
THE BRAND: Hefty
THE AD: “#PartyHardMoms” Campaign (2015)
THE REASON: Brands rarely use modern slang successfully. It usually makes them look like they're trying too hard or are WAY out of touch. Hefty nailed it. The scripts are amazing.
Doug Brashear, Director of UX
THE BRAND: Budget
THE AD: “Aroma-therapy Candles” TV spot (2000)
THE REASON: The line where they say "we don't need aromatherapy candles" embodies the feeling of having what you think is a great idea only to be brought back to reality by some realization.
Joey Tarbell, Senior Copywriter
THE BRAND: DirecTV
THE AD: “The Settlers: Satisfaction” TV spot (2016)
THE REASON: A clever concept well executed… And the language is juicy. “The boy has his stick”—boys always have their sticks to play with, right? “The girl, her faceless doll”—“faceless” is perfect, conveying both cable’s lack of visual character and the anonymity of the female child in this traditional patriarchy. “And you have your cabbages”—symbols of the routine drudgery of the cable experience and of the limited possibilities of the submissive wife.
Ted Holladay, Creative Director
THE BRAND: Folgers
THE AD: “Happy Morning Sunshine” TV spot (2006)
THE REASON: I love how nutty this commercial is. It’s so weird, you really can’t look away… and you have no idea what it’s about till the very end. Brilliant! I hate Folgers, but damn… this is great.