Creativity Meets Commerce: 35+ Clever Ads That Broke The Mold

By Ayomitide F January 28, 2024

This article was originally published on bettermanly

You know how ads are all over the place? These things are everywhere! But hey, once in a blue moon, there comes an ad that’s like a breath of fresh air in the ad-pocalypse. If you’re all about cool ads or you’re on the lookout for some inspo to jazz up your own company’s promo game, guess what? You’ve just stumbled upon the ultimate list!

These aren’t your everyday plain grandma’s ads. We’re talking about the crème de la crème. These ones have been making waves ever since they dropped. As your connoisseurs, we are giving slick ads and brain-twisting marketing campaigns the spotlight they deserve. Now take a chill pill, and get ready to have your caps blown off by these genius pieces.

The Beetles

Before we start arguing about “who came first,” the car and the band set aside their differences for an incredible marketing ad years after the infamous Abbey Road shoot. And the German company, Volkswagen, did not disappoint with this one. 

Image credit: Devuluh, Reddit

What a way to run it back. This ad gives us the vibe that the Beetles never left! We can now say the 1990s culture was dominated by Tie-dye shirts, round sunglasses, peace signs, and, of course, the New Beetles.


We are totally loving the vibe of this ad! There’s something oddly charming about that Venomesque supervillain theme, right? It’s like they’ve taken a cue from the dark side but added a relatable twist of the everyday struggle to it. 

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And they freaking nailed it! Coffee is that magic pill that transforms you from a sleepwalking dweeb to a workaholic monster in seconds. So when next your brain’s like, “Dude, we need coffee NOW!” embrace your very own Venomesque transformation. 

Rim shot

This one is right on the money. Here, the team blended the simplest concepts together to make the perfect ad for flea sprays. And what better way to do it than make the target audience your pets? Come on! What a whopper!

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This ad is one of those that is too good to understand sometimes, especially since you might have to go up to the seventh floor for a full picture. But it is right up there in the realm of GOAT ads, and we absolutely love it!

Relax and enjoy

The next one got our mouths watering. It is another stroke of genius marketing. We think it’s fair to say this might just be the first and best of its kind! A chocolate themed-bench?! We never saw that one coming! Must be really comfortable!

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It’s all fun and games till a toddler rushes over and tries to take a bite! But imagine the surprise if you found out it was really made of real chocolate. Now, that is one way to sway public opinion in your defense!

Finger licking good

KFC and their evil genius of a marketing team. There are many ways to say “sizzling hot,” and this might just be the best of him. You don’t want to be anywhere near the exhaust pipe of a racing car. Unless it somehow gives you chicken!

Image credit: calypsopub, Reddit

Big kudos to them for producing a brilliant ad like this. Many car racing fans would absolutely love this one. It reaches out of the usual cheesy advertising niche and grabs at you! Who wouldn’t love some sizzling chicken next to an awesome fast car?

Now, they are in charge

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia recently made a big splash after lifting the prohibition on women drivers. Took them long enough! They officially shed that “only country in the world to ban women from driving” badge. Way to go, fellas.

Image credit: B3yondL, Reddit

And as women hit the Saudi roads, Ford welcomed them with this simple yet powerful ad: The eyes of a woman in the rearview mirror. Most companies will scratch their heads and go for something way over the top. But this one gives a respectful, reassuring nod to the women of Saudi Arabia.

The Bics

Yeah, this was an absolutely brilliant ad from Bic! They’d already won by putting the strange yet beloved besties Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg next to each other. And we can’t ignore the subtle message that comes with “… and more”. 

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For all the fun lovers out there, this is your sign to go grab your Bic EZ Ultimate Lighters. The convenience you get with these will make you say goodbye to the land of matchsticks quicker than you can snap your fingers.

Cheerful givers

“They don’t need to go with you” is a very grim line to put in an organ donation ad, but hello, they are right on the money! In fact, they would be in some trouble if not for those cute organ-like suitcases. 

Image credit: IfYouCanCatchMe2, Reddit

This is a very cute way to approach such a controversial topic! And we have to say, it must have taken a lot of guts to actually do this. And yes, we are now in line with the “They don’t need to go with you” movement!


Ah, Chinatown and those neon signs – talk about a match made in heaven! It’s like peanut butter and jelly, mac and cheese, or Netflix and chill – they just go together like old pals who’ve been hanging out forever. Those neon signs are the true rockstars of the advertising world!

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Think about it: you’re strolling down a bustling street in Chinatown, taking in the scenes of dim sum and roasted duck, and what catches your eye? It’s that neon sign whispering, “Come check out this joint. We’ve got something cool going on.”

Grandmasters of PR

There is no such thing as bad PR. As you already know, KFC is the master of incredible ads, just like the one we saw based on stock car racing. This one left the racetracks to make fun of the knock-offs. It was genius!

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Now, that’s what you call some sweet chin music to get the imposters. It was a blow to the pretenders but a very masterful and artistic stroke of art. So, remember that in the world of ads and chicken, nobody does it like KFC! 

Hit the sack!

Ever thought about a magic pill that could turn back the clock and keep you looking as fresh as a daisy? Well, it turns out that getting some shut-eye isn’t just about recharging your energy; it might just be the ultimate anti-aging secret we’ve all been dreaming of!

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Like IKEA is saying here: when you’re wrapped up in the coziest bedding, drifting off into dreamland night after night, your body is working its magic to repair and regenerate cells, turning back the biological clock. So, instead of chasing after expensive serums, all you need is good sleep and, of course, comfy bedding!


This one is something straight out of a sci-fi flick! These lights can see through anything. It’s like you’re channeling your inner Clark Kent while cruising down the highway. Wild, huh? Mercedes stepped it up a notch with this one.

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But hold up a second, amigo! Remember that there’s always a bit of mystery shrouding these things. Sure, the idea of ultraviolet lights is totally rad, but you know how it goes. Anyway, we can’t wait to join James Bond and his 007s behind the wheel of this one! 

Eat Here!

Man, you’ve got to hand it to this dude. He’s out here in a world where every restaurant screams for your attention with flashy neon signs and extremely loud car racing ads on TV. But guess what? Our good ol’ fella right doesn’t give a damn about all that noise.

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Nah, he’s like, “I’ll do things my way.” His move? He grabs a piece of chalk and slaps down the simplest, most kick-ass promotional message ever. The message is clear and simple: Eat Here, or we’ll both starve. C’est Magnifique!

Hard Truths

We can already hear the cheers from Percy Jackson fans on this one! The ad says that making a movie adaptation can be likened to cutting a big hole in the center of a book. But readers know that when those awesome books we love hit the big screen, they become a whole different thing.

Image credit: Farzal, Reddit

That quirky humor, hidden emotions, and quiet thoughts that make you really connect with the characters? Good luck capturing all that in a few scenes. The thing is, books let our imaginations run wild, unlike movies, where they cram everything into a couple of hours.

The Eiffel racket

Now, this is one way to promote a Tennis tournament in France. And we can’t think of a better one. Seriously, this idea is so simple. It’s like a perfectly executed backhand winner – clean, effective, and leaves everyone in awe. 

Image credit: Supersports

We’ve always believed that in a world of bells and whistles, sometimes simplicity is the real champ. Just a good ol’ straightforward promotion that hits the spot. Simple wins the match every time. It’s going to be more tricky for other sports, though.

Future Construction underway

“Build the Future” – now that’s a tagline that hits you right in the nostalgia feels! Who didn’t spend their childhood days huddled over a pile of colorful Lego bricks, dreaming up epic skyscrapers and rad spaceships?! It’s like a one-way ticket to memory lane, where creativity had no limits. 

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That tagline isn’t just a throwback to simpler times; it’s a reminder that the future is still up for grabs. It’s an invitation to keep that same unbridled creativity alive, no matter how many years have gone by. We were truly at our creative best with the Lego bricks. Excellent ad!

Text and …….

You are probably sitting there like, “Wait, what? Are they seriously going there?” It’s this weird mix of spookiness and truth that just grabs your attention. Volkswagen must have hired some mad genius ad wizard who knew exactly how to mess with our minds!

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You can’t deny it; that is some next-level advertising right there. The kind that leaves you thinking, “Did they really just say that?!” Wait for the next ad, which says, “Don’t text and -drive- Die.” Whoa, slow down there, autocorrect! 

Neighborhood Friendly Superheroes

You know what’s super cool? The fact that being a hero isn’t just reserved for capes, web-slinging guys, or those bitten by radioactive spiders. We can all be heroes in our own right, even without fancy superpowers or abilities that are out of this world. 

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This rad ad floating totally gets this vibe – making a real impact is all that matters. It reminds us that even in our everyday lives, we have the power to save lives. No need for spandex suits – just a heart of gold and a willingness to lend a hand. Or a vein!

Adidas from downtown

Looks like the top minds at Adidas were sitting around, brainstorming like, “Hey, let’s take sandals to a whole new level without all that sketching and stress.” And you won’t believe what they came up with – a stroke of genius out of simplicity.

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Instead of getting tangled up in the intricate details of designing the perfect sandal, they just slid a line right under their iconic logo. Bam! Seriously, who needs all those design drafts and technical fuss when you can make a statement with a single, sleek line? That’s what we call thinking outside the shoebox!


It’s another bright day to grab some coffee at the park. But as you settle down, you notice this person, just kicking back with a Sharpie in hand, casually doodling their thumbprint on a piece of paper. But they’re doing it with such finesse and style that it looks like a legit thumbprint. 

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Seriously, who hasn’t had those moments when you’re scrambling to unlock your phone or open a secure door, and your thumbprint just won’t cooperate? It’s like the universe is playing a prank on you! But with your trusty Sharpie, doodle that thumbprint like a pro, and bam – you’re in!

Stay Smart!

We’re talking about IBM here, the OG of companies – they’ve been in the game for a solid century! So, how the heck are they still standing tall after all these years? Well, it’s all about keeping it simple and making life smarter for all of us.

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Now, this looks like a scene from a futuristic movie, right? Well, turns out IBM isn’t just watching that movie – they’re the ones writing the script! Smart cities? Yep, that’s their jam. They’re turning cities into sleek, efficient, and livable spaces. That is some effective advertising!

The Shinning

We all know mirrors are the rockstars of polished surfaces. But shoe-shining might just be catching up! The polishing game might just be taking reflection to a whole new level. It’s like they’re in a competition with mirrors, challenging them to reflect better than they do. 

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Now, let’s talk about that next-level move of hanging your well-polished shoe as a driving mirror. Seriously, who comes up with these genius ideas? It’s a kind of laidback flex, “Yeah, my shoe is so well-polished it gets to be a driving mirror.” 

Let’s go!!

It’s like Lego just never runs out of creative juice! They’re back at it again, tapping into the epic realms of imagination. You know what the deal is? With those tiny, colorful bricks, you can pretty much whip up anything you dream of. 

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And we’re not just talking about your run-of-the-mill spaceships and castles. Nope, they’ve taken it up a notch. Legos can become a ship, sailing smoothly on an ocean, right smack on a DVD cover. Crazy, yes! But impossible is not a word associated with Lego! 

Oh, Christmas tree!

We are guessing Mercedes was foreshadowing themselves as the perfect Christmas gift here. So, you wake up on a frosty Christmas morning, peek out your window, and what do you see? A glistening, brand-spankin’ Benz parked right there in your driveway. 

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If that ain’t Santa Claus vibes, we don’t know what is. Talk about making an entrance, right? Think about it – Santa’s got his majestic reindeer and sleigh. But a Mercedes? That’s the grown-up version of a sleigh, no doubt. 

Jumanji, Part 5

Nikon is all about Jumanji vibes. And guess what? We’re totally digging it! Those cameras might just be the ultimate sidekicks for your hiking escapades. They’ve got some kind of magical power or something. These cameras are practically on a first-name basis with bears, gorillas, and even Bigfoot!

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Yeah, you heard that right – they spot these wild creatures way before you even get a whiff of their presence. Nikon’s on a mission to unveil all the hidden mysteries of the great outdoors, one mythical beast at a time!

Extra light!

Many people, including us, hadn’t heard of this thing called Pepsi Light. You may be wondering: Does it have the secret ingredient to launch you into outer space like some sort of cosmic energy drink? Do we, at least, get escape velocity when drinking it? These 3D ads make us even more confused! 

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Pepsi Light is kind of like the cousin of Diet Pepsi. You know how soda companies like to mix things up with different names and slight variations? Well, that’s what’s going on here. Pepsi Light is basically the European version of Diet Pepsi, tailored to the taste preferences and regulations across the pond.

Clean sweep!

Look at that wild invention, folks. It’s like something straight out of a sci-fi flick! There is really no limit to the sheer audacity of human creativity. But hold up a second – did you catch the driver’s expression? He is clearly not as thrilled as the rest of us. 

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Maybe he’s thinking, “Why on earth am I cruising around on a giant shaving stick?” Either way, it’s a sight to behold. But man, who even dreams up stuff like this? If it doesn’t actually mop up that floor spotless, well, let’s just say that won’t be good for business!


Man, we can’t help but laugh at the mind-boggling concepts we see coming out of the advertising industry. It’s almost like these guys have a direct line to the most creative corner of the universe or something. A place the rest of us can’t access!

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Hats off to those folks – they’ve got some serious talent and a knack for making us do double takes. And you know what? Maybe it’s time we switch gears and start skipping ropes. Who knew that a cleverly crafted bag could have us yearning for some exercise?!

Hidden Figures

What’s a better way to show the importance of a highlighter than by highlighting one of the most influential people in history? Genius right?! After all, that is what most of us do with these things – highlight the aspect that truly resonates with us. 

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And when it comes to the USA, few people in history resonate with us like the legendary Katherine Johnson. She was an underdog and underappreciated for many years despite contributing to one of the nation’s greatest moments. This ad is the ultimate mic drop of creative moves.

Hot sauce!

We are on a roll, people. This might be the most subtle advertising ever. In case you don’t get it, what this picture is saying is that the Tabasco sauce is so hot that it will pop the corn. We are running out of accolades to give, but this one takes the cake!

Image credit: stalwart_rabbit, Reddit

The picture does so much of the heavy lifting that no tagline is necessary. That said, even coming up with the picture must have been an incredible feat itself! Now, you might say: “But Tabasco isn’t even that hot.” Don’t be a hater, man!

Prescribed by IKEA

IKEA is keeping the game alive, and we’re all here for it! Who would’ve thought that a furniture store could be dishing out such tough ads? The way they’ve managed to blend everyday stuff with this hidden layer of brain-teasers is straight-up genius. 

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Selling bedding has never been easier! According to them, sleep is a magical elixir that we’ve been overlooking for way too long. Forget about energy drinks and triple espressos – a solid snooze is the real deal. It’s the rejuvenation station, the creativity booster, and the stress destroyer all rolled into one!

Real Families Only!

Man, this IKEA ad got the wheels turning, didn’t it? It’s like they somehow eavesdropped on our last family gathering and decided to turn it into a commercial. Who knew a furniture store could nail the essence of real family life so perfectly?

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The morning scrambles with cereal flying left and right, the eternal quest for that one elusive sock that vanishes into thin air and doesn’t even get us started on the art of assembling furniture without sparking a mini Armageddon with the rest of the household. This ad is really the blueprint!

Rich Flex

This is passive-aggressive advertising on steroids! We’ve got a drool-worthy Bentley, next-level luxury, just chillin’ on a flatbed truck. But hold up, they’ve got it all dolled up inside this slick glass container. On one hand, it’s all “Hey there, check out this beauty on wheels, no biggie.” 

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But that glass casing is like a whisper, saying, “Look at what dreams are made of… and look back at your ride.” It’s like they’re saying, “We’re not trying to make you feel inadequate, but if you’re suddenly pondering life choices – like trading up to a Bentley – we totally get it.” 

Temple (QR) Run

So, check this out. There’s this fresh, new challenge sweeping through the entire neighborhood, and people are going bonkers over it. The deal? Draw up a snazzy QR code, and just like that, you’re in for a job! Sounds like a piece of cake, doesn’t it? 

Image credit: coram_morte, Reddit

At first, we were all like, “Yeah, we’ve got this in the bag!” How hard could doodling a QR code be? Imagine you scan your masterpiece of a code, all excited, and boom! Next thing you know, you’re staring at the freaking FBI portal! 

The Gold Rush

If you’ve watched movies like Troy, Fight Club, or Mr. & Mrs. Smith, then you have a good idea of what this dude named Brad, is all about. Back then, he had the kind of charm that could make your heart skip a beat and a talent that could turn a script into pure gold.

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And let’s not forget the hullabaloo when he became a free bird again! You wouldn’t believe the scene. Norweigan Airlines came out of nowhere and offered a chance for anyone with a wild dream to hop onto a jet and fly one-way to LA for a chance to get him!

New rules

Have you ever stopped to think about the sheer power of hunger? It is like the OG driving force behind everything. Imagine you are a zebra, just minding your own business, grazing on some grass, chillin’ in the African savannah. 

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But then, your stomach starts rumbling like a bass-heavy beat at a party, and suddenly, all your zen vibes go out the window. Next thing you know, you’re in a wild chase with a freakin’ lion! So, next time you’re hungry and searching for a snack, just remember this ad!

Spot the Difference

So you wake up, and you’ve got two options on the menu: a) the dullest, gloomiest vibe that makes you feel like you’re trapped in a black-and-white movie, or b) you throw open those curtains, and bright sunlight floods in! 

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It’s like Mother Nature’s way of saying, “Hey, wake up, champ, the day’s rolling, and you’re part of this epic adventure.” And that’s where the window comes in. It’s not just a piece of glass stuck in a wall; it’s a portal to possibilities. Invest in a window today! 

Hot Shingles  

This one is as cheesy as your late-night snack. You know how people say sex sells? This might just be the millionth attempt to make something of that fact. Luckily (or unluckily), it’s a 50-50 chance. Ads like this are usually either very cool or very corny!

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Imagine cruising down the highway, eyes on the road and a smile curving your lips, when suddenly your peepers lock onto a billboard that reads, “Hot Shingles in your area.” Come on, guys. You can surely do better than that! 


It’s the fantastic, the fabulous: the one and only Bic – the master of multitasking! One minute you’re at your desk, jotting down those genius ideas with your trusty Bic ballpoint pen with smooth lines and crisp ink. It’s like a dream come true for all your doodling needs. 

Image Credit: Bic

The next thing, you’re facing the mirror, ready to tackle the day, and guess who’s got your back? Bic once again! This time with their shaver ensuring that your grooming game is as sharp as your pen strokes. Bic is saying, “Why settle for one when you can conquer it all?” 


Man, let’s talk about the Land Rover Defender – the real deal when it comes to SUVs for all-out adventure. This bad boy isn’t just about taking you from point A to B; it’s about embracing the wild journey in between! 

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It’s like that trusty sidekick that’s always up for an escapade, no matter how rugged the path gets. The Land Rover Defender doesn’t just drive; it conquers. It’s got that perfect mix of brawn and brains. You could take on the Amazon rainforest one day and cruise down the coastal highway the next!


Let’s talk about the dedication that goes into hyping up a minor addition to a restaurant joint. They’re not just dropping a couple of new menu items; they’re orchestrating a whole show! But let’s be real, that phone burger – as cool and futuristic as it sounds – it’s gotta be pricier than a cruise. 

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All those smartphones stacked together look like a feast. You can’t help but wonder if they are using the latest model. Are there charging cables peeking out? Is it for real, or is it just a super convincing prop? You can almost hear your wallet sigh!

Wise up

Alright, buckle up, folks, ’cause we’ve got ourselves the realest ad. In the endless void of generic ads – those flashy, overhyped pitches that make you roll your eyes so hard you’re practically doing somersaults-  this one is an uncut gem! 

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We can only imagine seeing it in real-time. Look at that! No frills, no fancy gimmicks, just pure unadulterated realness. This is a world where ads don’t treat you like some kind of generic target but like the savvy individual you are. 

Flag off

Let’s talk about Norwegian Airlines and their killer sense of humor for a second. If you have not seen their Brad Pitt ad, you’re missing out! They are not just about making you chuckle; they are also masters of WorldPay-centric advertising.

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Or, in this case, flag play! Just look at this one; it is simple yet so thoughtful. It’s like a big ol’ international flag family reunion. We’ve got the Norwegian flag, chillin’ like a pro, and then bam, it’s surrounded by an A-team of other flags from around the globe: from Krakow to Bangkok!


Nivea really upped their advertising game this time. They are playing around with this cool 3D effect that’s got everyone talking. At first glance, it’s all about that crescent moon they’ve got going on. It’s like, “Hey there, night sky vibes!” 

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But if you lean in a bit closer, like Sherlock Holmes with a magnifying glass, you just might catch a sneaky glimpse of something else. It’s like a magician’s trick – blink, and you might miss it. There is a half-open Nivea cream tub instead of a crescent. Genius!

Pushin P!

Have you ever seen Jeeps pulling off their signature quirky parking moves? It’s like they have a whole different parking playbook that the rest of us don’t know about. Jeeps are known for their bizarre parking, and they just used it to their Ad-vantage! 

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Can you believe it? Talk about self-awareness meets pure genius. You can’t help but admire the laidback audacity of it all. Jeep took its unique parking reputation and flipped it into a bold advertising move that’s both unexpected and totally on-brand. Genius? We certainly think so!