Some of the most memorable commercials on TV are those that are so hilarious, you just can’t help but remember them. The humor is so good that you can joke about it with your friends for days, months, and maybe even years after the commercial has gone off the air. Do you remember what those commercials were advertising, or just that it made you laugh?
This is an issue for many businesses that advertise. They’re able to use humor in their advertising to grab the attention of their audience, but they fail to deliver an effective message about their brand. Memorable and effective ads don’t just make people laugh or have some creative aspect to grab the viewer’s attention, they tie in something relevant about their brand, business, product, or service, so that the viewer not only connects with the ad, but they relate to the message and tie it to the brand.
We’ve looked at some of the best marketing campaigns of 2016, and formulated some tips on how to create memorable and effective marketing creative. That way, your audience won’t just remember your commercials, they’ll connect them to your business and brand.
The Most Effective Campaigns of 2016
Some of the most memorable marketing creative of this past year came from big, recognizable brands like Coca-Cola. If you’ve stepped out in public in the past year, you’re probably familiar with Coke’s “Share a Coke” campaign, that inserted various names and encouraged people to take pictures with the cans and share on social media. Other effective campaigns came from brands and organizations that you might not expect, like the U.S. Navy and its “Project Architeuthis” interactive puzzle game designed to attract talent to its cryptography ranks.
Whether it’s Coke, the Navy, Volvo, or Under Armour, brands with the most effective marketing creative of 2016 all shared some things in common and were chosen based on these criteria. First, the marketing made a difference in terms of driving business performance or changing consumer behavior. Coke was a perfect example, driving an increase in engagement with the brand and encouraging consumers to be brand evangelists on social media.
Second, award winning commercial creativity that allowed brands and agencies to compare performance against that of their peers. For Coke, that likely meant measuring levels of social engagement such as followers, likes, shares, and brand mentions against competitors like Pepsi.
Finally, the most memorable marketing creative of 2016 had to have great people and organizations behind them. Under Armour’s “I Will What I Want” campaign featuring supermodel Gisele Bündchen is a perfect example of a campaign with both an outstanding organization, and individual, working in conjunction.
Tips to Create Memorable and Effective Marketing Creative
Based on some of the best campaigns of 2016, as well as marketing creative best practices, here are some tips your business can implement to create memorable marketing creative:
- Clarify your objective - Your marketing campaign should be designed with specific, measurable goals and objectives in mind. Sure, you want people to remember your brand, but do you need to increase foot traffic to your retail location? Or maybe increase overall awareness because you’re new to the market? Whatever it may be, get clear and specific, as this will be the driving force behind your creative.
- Define your target audience - Once you know your objective, it’s time to make sure you have a clear picture of your target audience. What kinds of people watch the TV stations you’ll be advertising on? Do they live in cities, or in the suburbs? You’ll want to have a grasp as to what they like, what appeals to them, and their overall demographic characteristics. And in today’s digital world, it’s important to know what screens they’re using. That way you can optimize your campaigns to reach younger people on their mobile devices, for instance, and in general determine how to format ads for your target audience.
- Formulate a call to action - To be not just memorable, but effective as well, you’ll need to position a call to action (CTA) or a key takeaway towards the end of your ad. This could be to visit your website, attend an event, or engage with you on social media. Whatever it may be, your CTA should relate back to what your overall objectives are. You should then craft your entire creative around your CTA and ensure the main message is presented in the ad. Think back to Coke and their TV commercials for their “Share a Coke” campaign. Their CTA was to engage the brand on social media, and it was clear in the ads that’s what people were supposed to do.
- Appeal to emotion - While as humans we’d like to think we’re mainly driven by logic, the most effective marketing creative appeals to the emotional side of people. The relationship between a consumer and a brand, at its heart, is emotional, based on ongoing trust. For instance, the number one campaign of 2016 went to Penny the Pirate, an app that allows parents to test children’s’ eyesight through a fun, interactive children’s book. The ad was both effective and memorable because it appealed to the emotional side of a parent’s relationship and connection with their children.
- Tell a story - A TV ad might last only a minute or so, but it’s enough time to tell an intriguing story, and relate it back to your brand. While Volvo’s “Live Test Series” campaign featuring 4-year-old Sophie the driver was quite entertaining, it told a story that related back to Volvo’s core differentiating belief and focus, which is driver safety.
- Repetition - Two of the biggest keys to effective marketing creative are consistency and frequency. First, you want to make sure that you repeat your core message multiple times within the ad, while at the same time not being redundant. Coke repeatedly drills “Share a Coke” throughout their ads, but does so within different contexts and people, it doesn’t come across as boring or repetitive. Second, make sure that your message is being repeated consistently and frequently across channels. This goes for not just TV, but things like email marketing and social media.
This shows how important it is to create a fully integrated marketing campaign across channels. A key strategy to create memorable and effective marketing creative is to reinforce your messaging with not just TV ads, but online video, social media, SEO, and content marketing. Implementing memorable and effective TV commercials can be accomplished, just remember some of the above tips as you go through the process.