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Laugh, Cry, Think: Commercial Videos That Stirred Our Emotions and Why They Work

In the world of advertising, a great commercial transcends mere product promotion, becoming a piece of pop culture that can evoke laughter, tears, or even inspire change. From the heartwarming to the hilarious, these memorable ads have mastered the art of persuasion, embedding their messages in our collective consciousness. Let's explore some of the best commercial ads that have not only achieved marketing goals but have also become iconic in their right.

E*TRADE - Monkey (2000, USA):

The genius of the E*TRADE "Monkey" commercial lies in its simplicity and the way it used humor and satire to make a point about the absurdity of some dot-com era investments. It was a bold critique of how companies were spending enormous amounts of money on advertising without clear returns, contrasting this with E*TRADE's value proposition as a sensible place for individuals to invest their money. Despite—or perhaps because of—its minimalistic approach, the ad became one of the most talked-about commercials of the 2000 Super Bowl and is remembered as a classic example of effective advertising.

Tide Super Bowl Commercial 2018 It's a Tide Ad: 

The Tide Super Bowl Commercial from 2018, titled "It's a Tide Ad," is widely acclaimed for its clever and humorous approach to advertising. Featuring actor David Harbour, known for his role in "Stranger Things," the ad cleverly subverts the typical tropes of Super Bowl commercials across various genres to emphasize Tide's cleaning power. The "It's a Tide Ad" commercial was praised for its originality, humor, and effective use of the Super Bowl advertising platform. It engaged viewers by making them anticipate the next unexpected twist in what could have been a standard ad break, all while humorously promoting Tide's product effectiveness. This approach not only entertained but also created a lasting impression that stood out among the plethora of Super Bowl commercials, demonstrating the power of innovative advertising.

Doritos Blaze vs Mountain Drew 2018 Super Bowl Commercial – Morgan Freeman:

The Doritos Blaze vs. Mountain Dew Ice 2018 Super Bowl commercial is a highly memorable and entertaining advertisement that features two iconic celebrities in a playful "rap battle" setting. This commercial stands out for its creative concept, engaging visuals, and the unexpected pairing of Dinklage and Freeman in a rap battle context. It leverages the star power of both actors and incorporates well-known music tracks to create a memorable and entertaining advertisement that captivates the audience during one of the biggest advertising moments of the year – the Super Bowl.

Jason Momoa Superbowl Commercial:

The Jason Momoa Super Bowl commercial, which aired during the 2020 Super Bowl, is for Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans. It's a memorable and humorous advertisement that cleverly plays with the public's perception of Momoa as a symbol of strength and rugged masculinity. Throughout the commercial, Momoa's narration emphasizes that at home with Rocket Mortgage, he can truly be himself, stripping away the layers that the world sees, which ties back to the product's message of feeling comfortable and secure in one's home financing. This commercial was praised for its humor, creativity, and the element of surprise. By leveraging Jason Momoa's willingness to poke fun at himself and subvert his public image, the ad effectively captures the audience's attention, making it one of the standout commercials of the 2020 Super Bowl.

Flamin' Hot I Super Bowl LVI TV Spot:

As the challenge continues, the ad showcases various "Flamin' Hot" products, including Cheetos, Doritos, and maybe a new, unexpected addition to the "Flamin' Hot" lineup, emphasizing their versatility and appeal to different tastes. The commercial is a celebration of flavor, fun, and the joy of sharing spicy moments with friends and family during the biggest football event of the year. It cleverly combines humor, visual effects, and popular culture to make Flamin' Hot snacks the must-have treat for any Super Bowl LVI viewing party.

Lays Super Bowl 2022 with Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd:

The Lay's Super Bowl commercial from 2022, featuring Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd, is a heartwarming and humorous advertisement that plays on the actors' real-life friendship and comedic chemistry. Throughout the commercial, the interaction between Rogen and Rudd is natural and filled with light-hearted banter, making the ad relatable to viewers. This Lay's Super Bowl ad from 2022 stands out for its effective use of humor, celebrity appeal, and the emotional resonance of friendship. It cleverly positions Lay's as a brand that celebrates togetherness and the simple joys of sharing a snack with friends, leaving viewers with a positive and uplifting message.

The BMW Super Bowl commercial from 2022, titled "Zeus & Hera," creatively features the legendary Greek gods Zeus and Hera as they transition into retirement in Palm Springs, California.The ad cleverly uses humor and celebrity star power to highlight the features of the BMW iX, emphasizing its appeal to those seeking a blend of innovation, luxury, and sustainability. The commercial concludes on a light-hearted note, with Zeus and Hera driving off into the sunset in their new BMW iX, suggesting even gods can find joy and satisfaction in the latest technological advancements.

Doritos | Brandless | 30:

The commercial cleverly avoids mentioning Doritos directly, instead relying on the iconic shape and the audible crunch of the chips to make the brand identifiable. People are shown enjoying the chips, laughing, and sharing moments together, emphasizing the product's role in bringing people joy and satisfaction. In the background, an upbeat and catchy tune plays, enhancing the fun and lively atmosphere of the ad. The "Brandless | 30" concept plays on the power of Doritos' brand recognition, confidently relying on the product's distinctive characteristics and the audience's familiarity with it. By omitting direct branding, the ad creates intrigue and reinforces the idea that Doritos are so iconic, they're recognizable without any branding at all.

Perfect 10: The Kia big game 

The ad emphasizes the power within us all, highlighting the vehicle's capabilities and innovation in sustainable mobility. The 2024 Kia EV9 takes center stage in a heartwarming campaign that celebrates the power within all of us—the power to brighten someone’s day. Set to the collaborative track “Wish I Was Here” by Cat Power and Coldplay, the commercial features a determined young figure skater who completes her program. As she looks up, she spots an empty seat next to her dad, creating a magical moment. The EV9’s electric power inspires this special connection, emphasizing the joy of shared experiences and the impact we can have on others 1. After all, it’s those moments that make us feel like a perfect 10! 

Dunkin’ ‘The DunKings’ ft Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Tom Brady, Jack Harlow, Jennifer Lopez, & Fat Joe 

The Dunkin' commercial titled "The DunKings" for the Super Bowl featured an ensemble cast of celebrities including Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Tom Brady, Jennifer Lopez (J. Lo), Jack Harlow, and Fat Joe. "DunKings" was highlighted as a memorable commercial from the Super Bowl, with advertising experts praising the use of celebrities to make the ad stand out. The concept revolved around Boston icons teaming up, with Affleck trying to impress J. Lo with his music skills during her recording session, supported by Brady on the turntables and appearances by Fat Joe, adding a touch of humor and star power to the promotion of Dunkin's new Iced Coffee, the DunKings Iced Coffee

Dunkin’ ‘The DunKings’ ft Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Tom Brady, Jack Harlow, Jennifer Lopez, & Fat Joe 

The Paramount Plus Super Bowl commercial for 2024, creatively titled "Sir Patrick Stewart Throws A Hail Arnold," is an eclectic mix of humor, celebrities, and pop culture references, marking a notable entry into the roster of Super Bowl ads. The commercial is filled with jokes and references that play on the characteristics and backstories of the featured characters and celebrities, from Arnold's literal use as a football to Creed's performance, echoing their meme-worthy halftime show from 2001. With a rich tapestry of content that spans various facets of Paramount's offerings, the ad successfully captures the spirit of the Super Bowl's entertainment spectacle, showcasing a blend of chaos, comedy, and creativity.

Dunkin The DunKings – Extended Cut

The Dunkin' commercial titled "The DunKings – Extended Cut" features Ben Affleck in a role that merges his real-life love for Dunkin' with his on-screen charisma. In a unique blend of reality and entertainment, the commercial showcases Affleck donning a Dunkin' uniform and taking charge of a drive-thru, interacting with customers in a manner that's both engaging and humorous.Affleck's involvement went beyond acting; his production company, Artists Equity, played a key role in the ad's creation, suggesting a focus on genuine, unscripted experiences over a more conventional, scripted approach. This decision to prioritize authenticity over polish underscores Dunkin's commitment to showcasing real moments that customers can relate to, further deepening the connection between the brand and its audience.

Imagine a world where the twist of an Oreo could change everything

The OREO commercial for the Super Bowl imagines a whimsical world where the twist of an OREO cookie influences historical outcomes. This playful ad combines elements of humor and fantasy, drawing inspiration from the concept of pivotal decisions hinging on the outcome of an OREO twist, reminiscent of "Drunk History" but with a sugary twist.

Conclusion: Creating a successful advertisement involves a blend of creativity, strategic planning, and understanding your audience. A successful ad is more than just a sales pitch; it's a connection made with the audience that leaves a lasting impression. By combining a clear message with strong visuals, emotional resonance, and a compelling call to action, while keeping the target audience firmly in focus, advertisers can create campaigns that not only meet marketing objectives but also enrich the consumer experience. Remember, the most impactful ads are those that understand the heart and mind of the viewer, turning viewership into engagement, and engagement into action.