Interested in working with us? Invite us to your RFP!

Sep 30, 2016 | 3 min read

These 9 Ads Prove the Power of Clever Copy

Paid Search

Catch consumers’ eyes in a 140-character world.

Effective ads are instantly attention-grabbing and easily digestible. They evoke emotion, convey urgency, and carve a place in the viewer’s memory. Most importantly, they communicate a strategic brand message.

Sound like a tall order? The ads below do it all, each hinging on a concise and memorable phrase or tagline. Take a look to see the power of clever copy in advertising:

1. Diesel: Stupid Might Fail. Smart Doesn’t Even Try.


Diesel’s 2010 campaign celebrates stupidity as a kind of liberating antidote to intelligence — which, paired with interesting visuals, seems pretty smart.

2. Boca Maldita: You Saw Your Girlfriend on Tinder

Just saw your girlfriend on TINDER!

— Brilliant Ads (@Brilliant_Ads) August 6, 2015

No one inspires sympathy quite like a guy who spots his girlfriend on Tinder while shopping around on the dating app himself. Boca Maldita, a regional high-alcohol beer, hilariously defies logic in this riff on modern infidelity.

3. Spy Sunglasses: Happy to Sit On Your Face

You know what they say — sex sells. Spy sunglasses took a risqué gamble with its 2012 billboard in Encinitas, CA. It was both appallingly inappropriate and wildly funny, depending on who you ask.

4. Aston Martin: You Know You’re Not the First

Speaking of misogyny — er, sex, Aston Martin made a charming case for its used models with this cheeky ad.

5. Tinder: 1 Million Dates Adventures a Week


Confronting their reputation as a “hook-up app” head on, Tinder pulled back the copywriting curtain to reveal the extent to which simple word choices can reshape brand perception. The strikethrough showed audiences the brand’s own thought process, and invited them to adapt a similar attitude.

6. BMW Denmark: I Love You

BMW Valentines Day ad

— Brilliant Ads (@Brilliant_Ads) September 7, 2016

It can be hard to find a seasonal tie-in that doesn’t feel stale or corny. BMW Denmark’s delightful play on words and letters for Valentine’s Day is breezy and sweet.

7. College for Creative Studies: This is Your Brain on Art


Is there a creative way for your brand to harken back to a classic ad? The College for Creative Studies not only riffs on a recognizable tagline and image from the Partnership for a Drug-Free America (“This is Your Brain on Drugs”), but ties in a thematically appropriate visual spoof on artist Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” as well.

8. Seamless: Cook When You’re Dead


Seamless recently launched an ad campaign targeting New York City residents that features witty one-liners like “Avoid cooking like you avoid Times Square” and “Your secret 3am dumpling & donut order is safe with us.” The ads cleverly play up the city’s delivery culture, and lend the brand a snarky, cool kid vibe.

9. Apple: Absolute Power Corrupts. Enjoy.


This list wouldn’t be complete without at least one of Apple’s consistently great ads. Behold: an eye-catching, shockingly modern ad from 1999, tempting consumers with the company’s unprecedented computer processor.

We’re looking forward to working with you, too.

Start conquering the digital terrain today.
Let’s Talk!