Ad Snob’s Favorites: Schweppes and Liberty Mutual

Seating charts in a large lecture class of over 200 people sound ridiculous – especially for college students. Yet, as a human programmed to following rules my entire life, I sit in row F seat 9 every day. Although many complain of how unfair this seating chart is (college kids are a bunch of whiners – we think we’re independent, but let’s be real: our moms still finish our laundry when we come home) I particularly enjoy my forced arrangement because it allows me to engage in random conversation with my peers.

Yesterday in class we watched a few commercials as we talked about social media marketing. I had already seen most of them because I eat, sleep, dream, and breathe advertising (<–ad snob) but the girl next to me, Grace Fox (visit her blog here) was very intrigued by them. We got into a conversation about our favorite advertisements, and why we like them. Being the ad snob that I am, I dominated the conversation, and I’m pretty sure that she regretted asking me the question because I talked her ear off…But nevertheless, here are the commercials that I deemed my favorite.

This is an Australian commercial for Schweppes. The Schweppervescence campaign was developed at George Patterson Y&R, Melbourne.

If you know me personally, you know that I am a sucker for anything that is in slow-motion. I could watch slow-motion videos for hours upon end. Why? Because it is AWESOME. 10 points for you, Schweppes, for recognizing my slow-motion obsession.

In all seriousness though, this commercial is absolutely beautiful. Viewers become entranced by soothing melodies paired with moments that one yearns to be a part of. How badly do you want to be at that party where they are throwing Schweppes balloons at each other in tuxedos?? Sign me up.

I can’t stop watching the beauty of the slow-motion, the song entices me emotionally, and then at the end I feel like crying because #1 the Schweppes party is over and #2 the simple tagline “a moment of…Schweppes” makes me realize that life is all about little moments and we all need to slow down sometimes (woah – so many emotions I need to grab a schweppes and sit down for a while).

Slow-motion + Song I want to download+ Life metaphors/revelations = perfect commercial.

My other favorite commercial is Liberty Mutual’s “Do the right thing” advertisement by the Hill Holiday Agency.

The first time I watched this commercial, I bawled my eyes out. Tears streaming down my face, I thought to myself, “WTF am I doing crying at an insurance commercial??”. Well played, Liberty Mutual…

Yet again, they hit my weak spots. Pay it Forward is one of my favorite movies of all time, and this commercial really resonates with me. That sassy tagline at the end that says, “When its people who do the right thing, they call it being responsible. When it’s an insurance company, they call it Liberty Mutual” puts all of the company values in line for me, and makes me want to choose them for my insurance.

I came across an interesting article in business week about this campaign, and I was even further impressed with Liberty Mutual and Hill Holiday Agency. Before this commercial, I had never heard of Liberty Mutual insurance. In fact, after watching the commercial for the first time, I remember Google searching the company because I did not know what it was.

Liberty Mutual had an ambitious goal of becoming one of the top five auto insurance companies in the U.S., but how were they to compete with other companies who dominated advertising and outspent Liberty Mutual on a 5 to 1 margin?

Now, as an advertising extraordinaire (aka snob), I’m well aware of the idea that one must “break through the clutter!” and Hill Holiday Agency did just that. They thought beyond traditional campaigns, and utilized research about how the company operates to completely transform the brand.

“Employees summed it up as: “We know you do your part, and you can count on us to do ours.” It’s what Liberty believes in, and it is what consumers seek. The team had found the catalytic idea—that collective, almost subconscious thought—that was already part of Liberty Mutual’s value system. This shared belief in responsibility would be the basis for a brand movement.” –Business Week Article

I always thought that I was more humorous and the best commercials were ones that made me laugh out loud (or, “LOL” for all of you preteens out there). However, when someone asked me what my favorite commercials were, the ones that I really remembered were these two. Advertising is all about storytelling, and allowing consumers to feel part of something bigger than themselves. THAT is what resonates with consumers. Schweppes and Liberty Mutual achieved this. What can your brand do?

p.s. I decided that this whole “Ad Snob” thing is fun. Since I love the advertising world and commonly come across new campaigns that catch my eye, look out for more posts like this one from now on!

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