Some Commercials Still Work

Some commercials still work. Kinda.

When I say they “work,” I mean that I don’t fast forward by them. I mean that I actually watch some commercials. Because they’re entertaining. Because they move me. Because they make me feel something–pride, joy, nostalgia. Something.

Do they make me want to buy products? Hardly ever. Although I suspect that their intent isn’t always to sell (or at least sell right away), but moreso to brand themselves into your mind so someday when you’re ready to buy, you buy from them. The key is that you actually remember what the commercial is selling.

Here are a few of my favorites from the past year or two. Lots of car ads. I won’t go into why they work, but maybe I’ll discuss that in the comments. What are some commercials that you enjoy watching? (Oh, and if you’re interested in this sort of thing, subscribe to this blog.)


8 thoughts on “Some Commercials Still Work”

  1. On the other hand, have you seen the creepy Kay Jewelers commercial with the couple in the cabin on the stormy night? You know, the one where the lightning startles the girl, only to have a creepy Eric Bana lookalike come into the picture and say, “Don’t worry. I’m right here. AND I ALWAYS WILL BE.” Did anyone else expect him to be holding a knife instead of jewelry? After he gave it to her, I was sure he was going to pull a Craig from Yale and be all “Now you’re my girl FOREVER!!!!!”

    Did this guy creep out anyone else?

  2. I think that all commercials communicating something emotional need effective naration. Recently that’s been done with the recognizable voice of an actor. The audience connects with the actor’s characters. John Hamm (see Mad Men & Kodak Carousel), Tim Allen (Michigan), Jeff Daniels (also Michigan), Sam Elliot (Dodge Trucks), Mike Rowe (take your pick), etc. They don’t have to be recignizable voices, but they do have to communicate emotion effectively. I consider voice over narration being different than the actors being on camera in the ad.

    BTW, I realized over the weekend that Uncle Leo playes a part in The Outlaw Josie Wales.

  3. I particularly liked the Google commercial. I’m not sure why they would need a commercial though. I personally google like it’s my job!

    I also COMPLETELY agree about music,… go back and watch the commercials without sound. It brings a completely different feel, and that’s because music subconsciously tells us how to feel.

      • I also thought about Bing. I should clarify that Bing is indeed my default laptop browser, while I have kept Google at work. Both get plenty of use from me. But even when I Bing something, I still say I googled it… Is that wrong??


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