Have you seen the entertaining Specsavers TV ad in which a couple, trying to drive on to a ferry, mistakenly board an adjacent aircraft carrier? Soon they are on deck with jet fighters landing around them.
It is the latest in a memorable series of adverts that entertain us, make us smile and make us admire the creativity. At the same time the viewers remember the brand positively and some even quote the brand and tag line in jokes.
In the 1970s, 80s and 90s there were many more of these campaigns that gave us a laugh. Heineken’s – ” Reaches the parts that other beers cannot reach”, “Happiness is cigar called Hamlet” and the BT campaign featuring Maureen Lipman as Beattie are just some of the series that used to make watching TV advertising enjoyable.
They were memorable series that also worked well in PR and, as new ads were often worthy of discussion at work or among friends, word of mouth also extended the marketing and gave the campaign greater value.
Now, other than rare examples such as this Specsavers campaign, there are few advertising series that we enjoy. Sure, some like the Nescafe and recent BT couples series engage us with the “will they, won’t they..” story lines, but they hardly raise a smile.
Too many ads are memorable because they are irritating and drive us to change channels. No wonder so many people are pausing Downton Abbey with V+ or Sky + during the credits. They come back after 20 minutes to watch it with less interruption by zipping through the many annoying commercial breaks at 32 times speed.
If there was more entertaining advertising, we might stop channel hopping and fast forwarding and might start watching the ads again.