Marketing Gold: Advertisements That Stole Hearts And Dominated Markets

By Ayomitide F January 11, 2024

This article was originally published on drivingtodays

Sometimes, advertisements are like those uninvited guests crashing our favorite online hangouts, especially on platforms like YouTube. You’re vibing with your video, and bam! Here comes an ad interrupting the flow. But check this out – amidst all that interruption, some actually step up their game. They’re not just selling stuff; they’re putting on a show.

Genius campaigns spare no cost in bringing together top-tier concepts, spectacular visuals, mind-blowing storytelling, and maybe some humor or feel. When these elements come together, ads are no longer annoying and become something else entirely – they become legit, eye-catching art.

You’ve seen those Super Bowl ads, right? They’re not just about pushing products; they’re like mini-movies. Companies drop serious cash to create ads that aren’t just ads – they’re entertainment!


Oooh, shots fired! It’s like a playful jab, right? Saying, “Hey, you, with your skills, you’re kinda irreplaceable.” It’s a nice little ego boost, honestly. But let’s be real for a sec. They’re making a point about how our unique human skills still matter, at least for now.

Yeah, bots and 3D printers are cool, but there’s something special about what you bring to the table. And you know, this might not hold up well when construction drones and ChatGPT-programmed machines are cooking up all sorts of buildings!


There it is – an ad for an oat drink. And guess what? Even the bus wants to check it out ’cause, well, it’s right there at the bus stop. It’s wild when you think about ads popping up everywhere, even in the spots where you least expect them.

But hey, that’s the thing – they’re getting creative. It’s not just a billboard anymore; it’s as if they’re turning every nook and cranny into a canvas. And that ad? It’s turning heads! That’s the magic of advertising these days – they’re not just trying to sell you stuff; they’re making everyday spaces a bit more interesting.

Vitamin D

This is solid advice right here. We could all use a bit more of that sunshine vitamin, right? Think about it: we’re often cooped up indoors, glued to screens or hustling through our daily routines, sometimes forgetting the magic of stepping outside into the sunlight. 


That natural light does wonders, not just for our bodies but for our minds, too. Once you let that sunshine in, a vibe comes with it—literally and figuratively. It’s like a breath of fresh air for your soul. Stepping outside and soaking it all in is therapeutic, man.

Spooky like Fanta

Whatever happened to Fanta? They used to be all about that happy, bubbly, sunshine-in-a-can kind of feel. But lately, they’ve taken a wild turn into the realm of scary hours! Now, what in the world could have sparked this eerie change? 


They just flipped the script, ditching the sunny vibes for something unexpected – like, “Hey, let’s give people a jolt and make ’em double-take!” Who doesn’t love a good scare?! Plus, people dig the unexpected – and what’s more surprising than your favorite soda going from ‘happy-go-lucky’ to ‘enter at your own risk’?


Those car-inspired canopies are seriously rad! Just think about it – you’re lounging outside, maybe at a cool outdoor event or in your backyard, and instead of the usual square or round canopy, you’ve got this thing that looks like a legit car parked over you.


It’s not your typical dull shade – it’s a whole vibe! Plus, it’s a surefire conversation starter. It’s wild how something as simple as a canopy can get a significant upgrade by taking inspiration from cars. It’s all about adding that extra flair to your outdoor setup. Totally sick!

The Story of Adidon

Look who it is, the Adidas Samba! They’re timeless, cutting through all the sneaker noise since 1950. As a matter of fact, these kicks aren’t just classics; they’re Adidas’s all-time bestsellers, known for being affordable, easy to snag, and carrying a rich history. 


From the ’70s, they’ve been linked with football terraces and then blew up in the ’90s with Oasis rocking them, making them a pop culture symbol. Remember ‘Trainspotting’? Ewan McGregor’s character Mark Renton rocked those burgundy Samba Supers, cementing their iconic status alongside the Gazelle.

Party After Party

It’s like a perpetual fiesta out here. Seriously, the vibe doesn’t quit—whether you’re wandering down the bustling streets, waiting for a train at the station, or belting out tunes in the shower, the party’s alive and kickin’. Imagine stepping out onto the streets, like stepping into a living, breathing celebration. 


People are chatting animatedly, street performers are jamming out, and the energy? It’s infectious! You can’t help but get caught up in the rhythm of it all. And let’s not forget the shower—the ultimate solo jam session. The acoustics might not be top-notch, but nothing beats letting loose with a shampoo bottle microphone in hand.


Imagine you’re groggily trudging through a Monday morning, feeling like you need extra energy to get off the bus. Imagine if that bus had a surprise in store for you—a slide. Yep, a proper playground-style slide right there as your exit strategy. Sounds wild, doesn’t it?


Who wouldn’t want to ditch the usual steps and take a quick, playful swoosh down a slide to start the day? But hold up! As cool as it sounds, we can’t help but think about if it’s pouring rain outside. Suddenly, that slide becomes a water park ride and a whole new, slippery adventure.

With your child

The whole idea of these “guerrilla classrooms” set up by COA and Cramer-Krasselt in Milwaukee back in 2011 was just brilliant. They basically turned the streets into interactive learning hubs, scattering puzzles, word searches, mazes, books, and whatnot to engage parents and kids in a fun and educational way.


Think about it for a sec – instead of sticking to the traditional classroom setup or forcing kids to crunch numbers and memorize facts, they brought learning to life right there on the streets. And the best part? You didn’t have to be a teacher or a genius to help your child learn.

Torpedoes away!

Picture this: you’re strolling through the heart of a bustling city, soaking up the sights and sounds of the urban landscape. Suddenly, amidst the usual flow of boats and ships cruising along the waterways, something catches your eye—a submarine! 


But not just any sub; this one’s got “Royal Submarine” written all over it, standing out like a gem in a sea of regular vessels. You can’t help but wonder what on earth a royal submarine is doing here—talk about a fish out of water! 

With love, Audible

Oh, man, this was a real eye-catcher. Talk about a quirky way to grab attention. It’s like they’re saying, “No matter how upside-down or messy things get, just flip it into laughter.” That visual—legs dangling out of a trash can—is such a bold move. 


It’s like Audible’s shouting, “Hey, life might toss you into weird situations, but here, have a good laugh while you’re at it!” You gotta hand it to them; it’s a clever way to market comedy audiobooks. It’s refreshing, you know? It makes you stop dead and think, “Sounds like a good deal!”

Marc Jacobs

You’re strolling down a narrow alley, soaking in the city vibes—maybe it’s the hustle and bustle of downtown or a cozy neighborhood. Suddenly, a giant bag, a tote to be precise, stands in the middle, as if it’s on a solo adventure, blocking the way like it owns the joint.


But here’s the kicker—it’s not just any bag; it’s proudly boasting its identity: “The Tote Bag, Marc Jacobs,” written in bold letters like it’s announcing itself to the world. It’s like stumbling upon a surprise guest at a party eager to stand out and be remembered.

The Heineken Party

It looks like the Heineken sign’s throwing out those vibes – “Let’s go party!” Who wouldn’t feel that itch to dive into some fun, right? It’s like an offer you can’t refuse. But you know, parties come in all shapes and sizes. 


Sometimes, it’s a wild, thumping music kind of scene where the speakers are blaring and the dance floor’s calling your name. Other times, it might just mean kicking back with a few close buds and sharing some laughs over a chilled Heineken or two. Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Potluck Dinner Party!

Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg are like an unexpected power duo. You wouldn’t necessarily put them together, but they hit us with “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party” and changed the game. People who had any doubts about these two were silenced by their ratings.


So, you got Martha Stewart, the queen of domesticity, whipping up recipes and showing her finesse in the kitchen, and then you got Snoop Doggy Dogg, the OG rapper, known for his smooth flow and love for certain herbal delights as her trusty sidekick. They both light up with Bic!

Let it fly!

Woah, BMW is going at it. They’re out here making kites cool again! Imagine cruising around in your electric BMW, wind in your hair, and what are you doing? Flying a kite behind your sleek ride, feeling like the happiest person on the block.


Who would’ve thought of combining an electric car with old-school kite flying? But BMW did, and it’s got us all hyped up about it. It’s like they’re saying, “Hey, let’s have some fun and bring back those carefree kite-flying vibes, folks.”

It’s going down!

Ah, those big downward arrows—yep, they’re quite the storytellers who signal lower prices on almost everything, right? It’s like a silent high-five from the retail universe, whispering, “Hey, guess what? Things are getting cheaper. We’ve got some deals for you today!”


Who doesn’t love a good markdown? You spot them online, teasing you with discounts on gadgets, clothes, or maybe that dreamy piece of furniture you’ve had your eye on. And suddenly, you’re doing mental cartwheels because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t enjoy snagging a bargain?

Louise V

We’ve all seen buildings donning solid colors, funky patterns, or maybe some artistic graffiti, but this? This is on a whole different level of creative genius. Whoever came up with the idea must have had a serious knack for thinking outside the box – dig it?! 


It’s like someone injected a dose of high-end fashion into the cityscape. You can almost feel those elegant leather textures and even the shiny gold hardware meticulously painted perfectly. Cheers to whoever dreamt up this wild and wonderful idea!

Barbie world!

So you stroll into the Barbie Can Centre at the Museum of London, thinking you’re about to immerse yourself in some historical tales and artifacts. And bam! You spot Barbie taking center stage. Yep, the iconic doll herself. First, Barbie isn’t just casually lounging around like she would in a dollhouse. 


Oh no, she’s strutting her stuff through the ages. You’ll see her rocking those vintage ’60s outfits, sporting disco glam from the ’70s, and pulling off those power suits from the ’80s. It’s like a fashion time capsule with Barbie as the ever-stylish tour guide!

Big news

First, they’re hitting the nail on the head with the whole “small pockets” thing. We’ve all been there, struggling to fit our phones in those tiny pockets. So, hearing about a phone that’s not going to stretch out your jeans or give you that awkward bulge – that’s a total win.


But hold up, it’s not just about the pocket-size game here. Samsung’s got some real mojo going on with their phones. Their phones aren’t just about making calls anymore. We’re talking about cameras that make your pics resemble Vogue magazine. Plus, the performance? Smooth as butter!


This colossal Tropicana juice box was just perched up there, casually pouring out its fruity goodness. But here’s the kicker – it wasn’t just about the refreshing drink. Nope, this giant juice box was on a mission – to sprinkle luck in the form of drops across the country.


See, each drop that fell had more than just liquid gold; it allowed one fortunate soul to bag an entire year’s worth of Tropicana for free! Can you imagine that? Sipping on endless amounts of tangy, citrusy goodness without worrying about a single cent. Pure paradise, right?

Big Mac

McDonald’s and subtlety? They’re like oil and water—don’t mix. When you see those golden arches towering over a cityscape or plastered across a massive building, you know exactly what’s up. It’s like their way of saying, “Hey, we’re here, and we’re not exactly trying to blend in.”


But you know what? That’s their charm. McDonald’s isn’t about being discreet or blending into the background. It’s loud, bold, and wants you to know it. That’s why their logo is practically a global icon. You can’t deny the instant recognition that comes with those arches—they’re practically ingrained in our brains!


Look at that – a basketball court right smack in the middle of a lake. It’s like a mini island just for hoops. Talk about a game with a view. It’s like playing ball surrounded by nature’s own VIP box seats. The setup feels surreal, almost like stepping into a fantasy basketball world!


As if that wasn’t wild enough, that little thing will host a mind-blowing showdown between Luka Doncic, the basketball phenom, and Luka. AI. Can you believe that? It’s like the ultimate face-off between human skill and artificial intelligence. We’ve seen some epic matchups before, but this one takes the cake!

Red Bull!

Red Bull went all out for this one. They had these pylons custom-made and strategically installed them at key landmarks around NYC. Can you imagine cruising through the city and suddenly spotting these towering structures? It was such a sight to behold!


And then, of course, the Air Race itself in Vegas? Unbelievable. The pilots maneuvering through those pylons at crazy speeds—talk about skill and precision. It’s mind-blowing how Red Bull always pushes the envelope with these stunts. But hey, that’s what makes it so darn awesome, right? 

General’s Diablo IV

KFC and Diablo IV? They sure know how to stir up a buzz with those unexpected collaborations. Who’d have thought a fast-food joint would team up with a game like Diablo IV? It was wild to see this binge-worthy crossover.


Well, unfortunately, it didn’t quite live up to the hype for many folks. Sometimes, these big releases don’t hit the mark for everyone. It happens. But you know what’s a pretty good consolation prize? That finger-licking good KFC chicken!

The Economists

You know what’s the most brilliant part about this? The placement. Now, this bus isn’t just making its rounds randomly. Nope, it’s strategically cruising past those towering high-rise buildings that house all those important folks—the ones making big decisions in high offices. 


Picture it: CEOs, government honchos, business moguls—basically, anyone who’s got an office with a view that’s at the cloud level. They’re peering out from their lofty perches and, bam! There it is, The Economist’s friendly wave from the top of a passing bus.

In our Bag

What a beautiful day here. The sun was peeking through the trees, birds chirping, and families enjoying picnics. And right amid all that was this mammoth bag, sticking out like a sore thumb. It’s like someone thought, “You know what this serene park needs? A massive bag to spice things up!” 


Or perhaps, and hear us out on this, it’s just a colossal mix-up. Someone ordered a regular-sized bag online, and a giant version was delivered instead. And rather than dealing with the hassle of returning it, they thought, “Eh, let’s just make it a quirky park centerpiece!”

Getting Old?

It’s quite the buzz, isn’t it? Let’s unpack this cool gadget and what’s got everyone so hyped about it. First, this mysterious device combines the classic flip phone design with an iPhone’s tech goodness! What more can you ask for? It is everything you ever want and need.


Now, why’s it causing a stir? Well, for starters, it’s a nod to the nostalgia of flip phones from back in the day. You know, those satisfying snaps when you’d close them shut? It brings back some serious vibes. And it’s such a hit with the younger crowd.

The Geoscan

Ah, man, Halloween in Dubai was off the charts this year. The Geoscan Drone Show put on this mind-blowing spectacle. They had this giant moving skeleton flying around in the sky, all decked out in lights and moving in this spooky but mesmerizing dance.


The way those drones moved to create this massive skeletal formation was like watching an artist paint the night sky. And against the backdrop of the Burj Khalifa, it was pure magic. It’s the kind of thing you’d never expect, but leaves you excited after witnessing it.

Burger Leaves

So, Burger King Sweden is stepping up its game by introducing some new plant-based options on the menu. They’ve got the Cheeseburger, Whopper, and Royale variants now available for all those plant-based enthusiasts out there. Here’s the kicker, though—they’re not really advertising these plant-based goodies as suitable for vegetarians or vegans. Why?


Because they’re cooked on the same griddle as the meat, these options aren’t exactly winning the health game despite being plant-based. They pack in more artificial chemicals, a boatload of sodium, and flavors you wouldn’t find in your regular, real-deal meal.


A floating Airbnb? Now that’s the stuff dreams are made of! Picture waking up to the gentle lull of waves, the sun peeking through your window as your cozy accommodation sways with the rhythm of the water. It’s like having your own island retreat but with all the comforts of home right on the water.


And the experience? It’s a blend of relaxation and adventure. You could spend your days lounging on deck, sipping your morning coffee with the tranquil sounds of nature surrounding you. Or perhaps you’d prefer diving off the deck for a refreshing swim or trying your hand at paddleboarding right from your floating abode!

Diablo, pt. 4

In a city jam-packed with bustling streets, its classic red double-decker buses, the occasional black cabs zipping around, and the historic architecture standing tall, a Diablo IV mural is as fluid as it can get. This dark fantasy mural stops people dead in their tracks.


Lilith is not just any ordinary being. She’s depicted in all her sinister glory, her presence looming over the cityscape, commanding attention with her otherworldly aura. Her dark wings stretch across the brick canvas, almost like they could take flight at any moment and cast a shadow over the onlookers below.

Bend the Knee

Boy, do we have a story to tell. Wendy’s, being the sassy and bold brand they are, notices something hilarious in the McDonald’s logo and thinks, “Hmm, that kinda looks like soggy fries, doesn’t it?” So, when Wendy’s new fries beat McDonald’s in a taste test, they don’t just sit back and celebrate quietly. Nah-uh! 


They go all in for the kill. They create an ad about it, boasting how their “Hot & Crispy Fries” triumphed over McDonald’s, and guess where they air it? In McDonald’s hometown, Chicago! That move? Absolute savagery! Wendy’s basically went for the neck; gotta hand it to them.

Metro Booming!

The whole metro with eyelashes thing? It’s a real eye-catcher, quite literally. So, here’s the scoop. Imagine a regular ol’ metro train, the ones you hop on for your daily commute, right? Now picture it with these long, fluttery eyelashes – like the kind you’d see on a glam night out or a red carpet event.


We know what you’re thinking – “What on earth? A metro with eyelashes?!” Apparently, Maybelline Cosmetics made this happen. Talk about thinking outside the box! You can bet that pitch meeting was a hoot with one wildebeest going, “Hey, you know what’d be wild? Let’s deck out a metro with lashes!”


So, you know those moments when you’re out and about, vibing with someone, and you’re just thinking, “Man, I’d really like to grab their number”? Well, Bumble, the awesome folks behind the dating app scene, dropped this sneaky little hint that might make that happen more easily.


“Want her number? Check the back of her shirt.” Instead of the classic “Hey, can I get your number?” you gotta glance at the back of their shirt. If Bumble’s suggestion’s in play, maybe their number’s hanging out back there. How smooth is that?!


Ah, the New York Bakery Co. bagels – those chewy, flavorful rings of goodness are practically the unofficial royalty of breakfasts in the Big Apple! When you wake up to the city’s hustle, just a touch of that crisp New York morning air mixed in with the aroma of freshly baked bagels reignites your passion.


Now, these bagels are the real deal, the OGs of the bagel world. And the variety? Oh boy! There’s always one to match your mood. Spread some cream cheese and lox, or maybe go wild with a hearty sandwich—these bagels can handle it all.

BoomBap roll

So, Matsumoto Kiyoshi, the Japanese convenience store chain, decided to step up their toilet paper game. Why? Well, it’s all about tackling a unique issue in Japan: shopper shame. See, in Japan, they’ve got these nifty devices in toilets to cover up, let’s say, natural noises. Maintaining privacy and etiquette is a thing.


Even gossip magazines can stir up a storm by capturing celebrities doing regular stuff like toilet paper at a supermarket. Ridiculous, right? And that’s where Matsumoto Kiyoshi came in – they revamped their packaging to look like boomboxes! By doing this, they’re squashing that shopper shame vibe to make shopping much more fun and lighthearted.


Specsavers really got creative with their Audiology campaign. Imagine you’re chilling in your backyard on a sunny day, and suddenly, you hear this rhythmic “tst-tst-tst-tst” in the distance. What could that be? It’s not Morse code; it’s the unmistakable sound of a garden sprinkler doing its thing.


And then, there’s the iconic “plrp-p-p-plp.” You know that sound, right? It’s like the anthem of beach days and poolside lounging. It’s the sound of squeezing out that sun cream, ensuring you’re all set to battle the sun’s rays and stay sunburn-free.


7UP is making a splash with its comeback, and they’re bringing in this super chill thing called the Coolbox – a bar rocking the style of a classic cooler. It’s like the perfect blend of retro vibes and modern coolness!


And let’s be honest, it’s about more than just the looks. This Coolbox is all about the experience. It’s like bringing the fun, laidback vibe of your favorite chill spot right to wherever you are – backyard hangouts, beach parties, you name it.

Flying Subways & Sandwiches

Subway turned heads with a colossal 180-foot blimp shaped like their hefty half-pound sandwich, ‘The Beast,’ doubling as a flying restaurant suspended 1,000 feet above the ground. Debuting on September 1st, this high-flying sandwich spectacle made its first stop in Kansas City during an NFL game, selling out reservations in a swift 17 minutes. 


Continuing its journey, the blimp’s next destinations were Orlando and Miami, Florida, as part of Subway’s larger ‘Eat Fresh Refresh’ campaign to revamp their menu and dining experience. With over 37,000 outlets in 100 countries, Subway claims the title of the second-largest fast-food chain worldwide, closely behind the golden arches of McDonald’s.

A for Effort

So, Spider-Man 2 finally dropped, and it’s blown everyone away! Insomniac Games totally killed it with this one. Sony went all out with their marketing game. Remember those 3D billboards lighting up NYC? And that crazy Venom statue tweet? Classic moves. But the latest ad down under in Sydney, Australia? It’s a head-turner, alright.


There’s this truck decked out with the game’s ads, but here’s the twist—it looks like it’s been in a brutal accident. Front down, wrecked, and hanging by webs from Spider-Man and Venom. You could imagine J. Jonah Jameson going off on Peter Parker for more action photos. This is advertising, folks!


Barbie vs Oppenheimer! What an era that was, man: Barbie, the ultimate symbol of manufactured beauty, going head-to-head with Oppenheimer, the brain behind the atomic bomb. It’s like the clash of two wildly different worlds—plastic perfection versus world-changing destruction. Quite the odd pair, right?


And this clash was inevitable, wasn’t it? Barbie, with her unattainable beauty standards, and Oppenheimer, with his creation that changed the course of history. This trash can says it all. We live in a Barbie world, people. Life is plastic; it’s fantastic!

Extraction 3?

You may be wondering how Tyler Rake survived. He took quite the beating – shot in the neck, multiple gunshot wounds, and then that crazy fall off the bridge. But hey, Chris Hemsworth is back for Extraction 2, so we knew he’d make it somehow.


Rake’s body washes up onshore; out of the blue, his team shows up to patch him up. But how did his team even find him? Just chalk it up to Rake being one tough dude and his team having some seriously good luck or skills to track him down in the nick of time.


This ad is pretty slick. Pictionary really demonstrates how the pencil packs a punch; no kidding. Never heard of it? Well, Pictionary is like the unsung hero of party games, sneaking in with a pencil and taking the whole show.


The setup is pretty straightforward: you split into teams, grab some paper and a handful of words, and let the doodling madness begin. The beauty of Pictionary lies in its simplicity. It’s not about being a Picasso; it’s about the sheer joy of creativity and communication through drawings.

Game’s rigged

It’s Ascension Day in Latvia – or at least for our guy, Edzus. So, there he is, seemingly floating mid-air, defying gravity and blowing everyone’s minds. But here’s the kicker – eagle-eyed spectators noticed something peculiar. Yup, you guessed it. 


They spotted the rig he was standing on! It’s like watching a movie and noticing a blooper. But hey, even though the secret’s out, kudos to the guy for attempting such a daring feat, even if the cat’s out of the bag. It’s the classic magician’s dilemma. 

The Invasion

Woah! London, the bustling city that it is, got a surprise visit from the ocean depths—sharks in the River Thames! Now, before you panic, let’s break it down. So, this epic film called The Meg features a ginormous prehistoric shark called the Megalodon. 


Warner Bros Pictures decided to give Londoners a taste of the movie’s massive scale. And what a taste it was! Well, they didn’t actually unleash living, breathing sharks into the Thames (phew!). Instead, they crafted three whopping handmade Megalodon dorsal fins mounted on boats that slowly cruised down the river.