A day without laughter is a day wasted — luckily, these campaigns will have you in stitches.
Laughter is the best medicine, which is why it’s no surprise that humor can bring any marketing campaign to life. For marketers looking to set their brand apart from the pack, sprinkling in a little well-timed comedy is always a winning strategy. Need some inspiration? Here are a few television ads that have cracked audiences up in recent years:
Bud Light: Slap
Fist bumps are out, slaps are in. Between the element of surprise and the excellent comedic timing, it’s not hard to see why this 2007 Super Bowl ad became an instant classic. But don’t let Bud Light fool you — next time your boss goes for a fist bump, it’s inadvisable to respond with a slap to the face.
Snickers: Hungry Betty White
Often referred to as one of the funniest Super Bowl ads of all time, this 60-second masterpiece featuring Betty White is nothing short of iconic. This wildly successful campaign has had more than one hit (the 2016 Marilyn Monroe commercial springs to mind), but if you really want to get your head in the marketing game, take a few lessons from Betty White as she participates in America’s favorite pastime.
Doritos: Time Machine
Let’s be honest — who among us hasn’t been transported by a bag of Doritos? This hilarious ad may have occupied a $5 million spot, but it only cost $200 to make! That’s because it was the winner of Doritos’ “Crash The Superbowl” contest, proof that outsourcing for creativity can yield incredible results.
This commercial garnered such an enormous following after its release in 1999 that it’s more accurate to call it a cultural phenomenon than a simple advertisement. In the years since its release, it has been referenced in countless other commercials, TV shows, and movies, including Scary Movie, The Simpsons, Friends, and The Office.
John West Salmon: Bear
We all like to think our favorite brands go the extra mile to make us happy — and in this commercial, John West Salmon proves that they do. While tearing fresh-caught fish away from an unsuspecting bear may not be the wisest move, consumers certainly appreciate this humorous glimpse into the lengths to which their favorite purveyors of fresh fish will go to bring them a tasty meal.
At a time when Apple was still struggling to assert themselves in a PC-dominated market, they came out with the Mac vs. PC commercials, which intended to demonstrate how Mac, played by actor Justin Long, is a simpler, sleeker technology solution than PC, played by John Hodgman. The criticism may seem harsh, but there’s no denying that these ads were funny — not to mention effective at converting PC users.
Mr. Clean: Cleaner of your Dreams
There’s nothing sexier than a man who knows how to clean, and this commercial proves it. Hold onto your mops, ladies, because Mr. Clean knows how to make everything sparkle and shine.
Skittles’ ‘Taste the Rainbow’ commercials are certainly creative — like this one, in which an entire family (plus some unexpected guests) enjoys the Skittles a young man is throwing through their teenage daughter’s window. Clearly, romance isn’t dead.
Kia: Hero’s Journey
Melissa McCarthy can do no wrong, especially in this hilarious epic. Like many heroes before her, McCarthy doesn’t always win — but at least she gets where she’s going in eco-friendly style. By hiring an actress already renowned for her hilarious hijinks, Kia ensures that the audience won’t overlook the comedic elements of this beautifully shot commercial.
Hyundai: First Date w/ Kevin Hart
Do you know where your children are? If you’re Kevin Hart, the answer is definitely yes. Although Hart’s parenting methods may seem extreme, nothing says “family vehicle” like one that dad can track on his iPhone — and nothing says “funny commercial” like the classic over-protective father trope.
Doritos: Superbowl Baby
Although this commercial faced a bit more controversy than #3, there’s no denying that the Doritos’ marketing team knows how to grab people’s attention.
Heinz Ketchup: Wiener Stampede
Some things are just meant to go together: hot dogs and buns, mustard and ketchup, cute dogs and television. If you want even more adorable wiener dog action, you can look up the extended version of the original commercial — we promise you won’t be disappointed.