The Olympic and Paralympic season is over once again, and it is thus the perfect time for ADTEKR to reflect on which advertising campaigns were the most memorable.
It is hard to pinpoint what makes a great campaign and ADTEKR struggled to decide which ones to choose. Thus, firstly a disclaimer: the campaigns below are only a small selection of many noteworthy efforts of engaging the Olympic and Paralympic audiences.
The variety of adverts we showcase below shows that there really are no overarching criteria of what makes a good campaign. They are funny, exciting, thought provoking and/or heartfelt, and they don’t even all feature athletes. However, the thing they do all have in common is that they were shown during the Paralympic and the Olympic Games and are great examples of how excellent creative campaigns can elevate a brand.
Best Concept – Virgin Media – Be the fastest
This advert centres on the time period of 9:58 seconds, which is Usain Bolt’s 100m world record win of 2009. We have seen a fair amount of the sport superstar Usain Bolt on TV over the years, but the originality in this advert’s concept succeeds in engaging the viewer and making them ponder at how short a time span 9:58 seconds really is.
Best Idea – Maltesers – Look on the light side
First aired during the Paralympic Opening Ceremony, this campaign champions diversity and disability with its three different spots and provides a refreshingly humorous perspective. With this campaign, Mars, owner of Maltesers, won Channel 4’s “Superhumans Wanted” competition, which offered £1million of the broadcaster’s commercial airtime to a brand that featured disability in its campaign. The Maltesers campaign was selected out of 90 entries and is based on real-life stories.
Most Visually Engaging Advert – Under Armour – Rule Yourself
This advert focuses on the incredibly hard work it took to become Michael Phelps. With its gritty, yet stunning, visuals and perfectly timed sound track, it makes viewers feel like they are seeing a side of the top athlete they don’t usually have access to. The advert’s success speaks for itself. At the time this blog is being written the YouTube video has 11.2 million hits. Also note the smart way through which Under Armour aimed to increase the advert’s reach – it released footage (here) documenting Phelps and his fiancée seeing the advert for the first time and being rather taken aback by it.
Most Emotional Advert – P&G – Thank You, Mom – Strong
We wept, our friends wept – and the ad is only two minutes long. P&G managed to pick up from its successful campaign during the Sochi Winter Olympics and create an emotion-packed advert focusing on the mothers of four Olympic athletes. The advert finishes with a memorable tag line – it takes someone strong to make someone strong.
Best Series – Samsung’s School of Rio
This series of five spots featuring Jack Whitehall works very well as a series because having watched one clip, viewers are motivated to click straight onto the next one – curious to see what other funny and outrageous thing Whitehall says to other Team GB athletes. The advert seems authentic and is quite tongue-in-cheek. It is a very British way of celebrating the Olympic and Paralympic Games and athletes. Impressively, Samsung manages to create a link between its product and the clip. This is done by, for example, highlighting the water-resistant feature of its phone at the end of the spot centred on rowing.