YouTube has asked users to vote for their favorite ad among a list of 20 carefully selected ads. The favorite number 1 ad is for Turkish Airlines Kobe vs. Messi: The Selfie Shootout. I agree; the ad is great but should you wish to treat yourself for real you should move one step down the list to (re)watch Volkswagen’s ad The Force, launching the new Passat.

The Force was meant to emotionally connect with the audience. It features a boy in a Darth Vader costume, trying his magic on the dog, the washing machine and his food but nothing seems to work. His father comes home in his brand new Passat. The child rushes out, standing in front of the car trying out the force one last time. Meanwhile, the father has entered the house and from the kitchen window he realizes what his son is up to. With his remote control, he starts the car and watches “Darth Vader” jump up in surprise, realizing his magic is finally working.

The iconic music works well to build attention and emotions, you connect instantly with the kid’s endeavours and you get the point that the new Passat is on the forefront. The ad won multiple awards, including a Cannes Lion and in Millward Brown’s in-market measurement, the ad outperformed the auto averages on all key measures.

Killer ads on YouTube
Millward Brown has done work for YouTube to identify the elements of a successful ad in the digital channel. Some of the elements are:

  • Involving, enjoyable and buzzworthy content is key to generating views
  • Integrating the brand into key moments of the video is the creative challenge
  • Longer content works well on YouTube

Don’t just take your 30-second TV ad and put it online. Integrate the Digital video ad into the campaign development right from the beginning. Make it easy for viewers to watch more or click-through to your website with interactive cards as recently launched by YouTube. However, what to do if you don’t have the budget to create the next Darth Vader ad for your brand? Be authentic and see if a straightto-camera video could work for your brand as it did for Dollar Shave Club

Big budgets are nice to have but big ideas will always be King!

See all 20 nominees for the YouTube list of killer ads here.

May the force be with you.


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