Thirteen Of The Best Ads of 2013

2013 was a good year for global advertising. The traditional 30 seconds TV spot is no longer de rigueur, only 2 or 3 of the ads selected are what you would call traditional ads.

Below are 13 of the best ads from 2013, the list is in no particular order.

1. Harvey Nichols: Sorry, I Spent It On Myself: In order to make this Christmas ad Harvey Nichols and their agency created real products that people could buy online/in store. To see the fun gifts have a look at

Advertising Agency: adam&eveDDB, London.

2. UTEC: Potable Water Generator: A great example of an ad that helped solve a problem. UTEC in Lima created the worlds first billboard that produces drinking water from the air.

Advertising Agency: Mayo Draft FCB

3. Coca-Cola: Small World Machines: Coke continue to do incredible work, getting out their message of sharing happiness. This is a great example of technology being used for good by helping to bring 2 countries closer together.

Advertising Agency: Leo Burnett Chicago & Sydney

4. TrueMove: Giving: One of this years most emotional ads was from Thailand. The storytelling is wonderful,  however few people knew it was for a mobile company, either way great work.

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy & Mather, Thailand

5. Volvo Trucks: The Epic Split: One of the year’s most popular ads earned Jean-Claude Van Damme a brilliant come back. This ad was actually the sixth is a series of PR stunts uploaded to YouTube for Volvo Trucks. For those wondering there was a safety net under Van Damme that was removed in post production.

Advertising Agency: Forsman Bodenfors

6. British Airways: #lookup Billboard: Another ad that uses a billboard in a clever way. BA hired 3 digital billboards across London, as British Airways planes flew overhead, they triggered advertising creative showing real-time data of that plane, including destination and flight number.

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy London

7. Smart: TXTXBKS: Another example of an ad that’s not really an ad, this time for Telkom company, Smart, in the Philippines. They managed to help provide educational books and tests for people across the country by cleverly converting sim cards into text books.

Advertising Agency: DDB

8. KitKat: Android KitKat 4.4: Fantastic brand collaboration. Google always names it’s Android operating system after snacks, for their latest update they decided to call it KitKat. The ad below is just part of a larger campaign at Neither Google nor Nestlé paid the other a cent for this co-branding stunt/contest.

Advertising Agency: JWT, London

9. Nike: Just Do It – Possibilities: This year Nike celebrated the 25th anniversary of their ‘Just Do It’ slogan with the below ad. To hear from Dan Wieden on the origin and inception of this famous phrase click here.

Advertising Agency: Wieden + Kennedy

10. Sport Club Recife: Immortal Fans: At it’s best advertising has the power to shape society and change lives, this work shows just that. Sport Club Recife introduced the world’s first ever organ donor card from a football team, encouraging football fans to become immortal fans by registering as donors.

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy & Mather Brazil

11. Dove: Real Beauty Sketches: Dove continued its great work helping to promote natural beauty. The campaign has become one of the most watched ads online and has rolled out around the world.

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy Brazil

12. Carlsberg puts friends to the test: Scarevatising (advertising that plays off fear) became somewhat of a trend this year. The main ad that helped kick it off was this one from Carlsberg.

Advertising Agency: Duval Guillaume

13. Anchorman 2 ad campaign: One of the years most anticipated movies has been promoted on a scale never seen before. Characters from Anchorman 2 have stepped in to co-promote the movie with everything from local news shows, commentating on the Olympic curling trials, selling soft drinks,  to promoting the Dodge Durango SUV (which has since seen a 36% jump in sales). Below is just one of the ads.

Advertising Agency: Wieden + Kennedy / Will Ferrell

I cant wait to see what ad agencies and brands come up with this year. Remember agencies, live the product, understand the consumer and be really creative. #NoWhatImSaying

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