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Notable Campaigns of 2016 According to the DNA Team

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Just before we hideaway for our Christmas holidays: let's take a look back at the 2016 ads that spoke and meant something to us. 

In a year where bad news reigned supreme,  à la Donald Trump and Brexit, ads featuring cute fluffy animals and heartwarming, inspiring stories abounded. Some will make you laugh out loud, some will completely shock and others will be a real tear jerker. 

With short films lensed by famous Hollywood directors, to traditional street billboards - see which campaigns made the cut. 

Kenzo “My Mutant Brain"

"My Mutant Brain" won us over because it’s so ridiculous and out there. It's sheer brilliance that's a true joy to watch. This is the type of creative work to watch when you’re sick of all the dull and pretentious ads out there. Ironically, it starts in a dull and pretentious vein, with actor/model Margaret Qualley portraying a beautiful woman in the height of society, attending an important gala with important people. It suddenly bursts out with contemporary choreography and impressive CGI effects.

Directed by Spike Jonze, this perfume ad goes above and beyond convention and pre-conceived ideas of perfume ads, and surprises, stimulates and satisfies the brain. 

H&M “Come Together”

It’s a Christmas miracle! Despite the fact that this ad came out later than most Christmas campaigns, it still tops our most outstanding for the entire year. The adorable, lovable style of the inimitable Wes Anderson is in full play in this four minute spot, which stars Adrien Brody as a conductor of the “H&M Lines Winter Express!

Allegro "English"

If you watch this Christmas ad by Polish auction site Allegro without tearing up, it's a tell tale sign that you probably aren't human. 
This video is soaked with love and all the way through. It has a simple concept with a powerful message that highlights the struggles of families living seperately. It has a profoundly strong message that comes in a tumultuous time for immigrants in the UK. There has been a reported rise in hate crimes towards Eastern Europeans - perhaps it's no accident, but this video is an ode to immigrant families who must often leave their loved ones behind for better prospects. 

Amazon Prime, an Imam and a Vicar.

Religious leaders are the unlikely stars of this international online retailer, 

This interfaith message is precisely the kind of uplifting, enlightening message we need as a society right now. Regardless if you believe in religion or not, this video teaches a powerful message of love and tolerance - thay we are all the same in this world. 


Spotify "Thanks 2016, it's been weird."

This Spotify ad showcases a fun and revealing side of user data, and you can't help but chuckle. 

Developed by the music streaming services’ in-house marketing team, the campaign was launched in the UK, US, France and Denmark on the 28th of November, with another 10 markets following soon after. 

In the UK, a billboard reads: "Dear 3,749 people who streamed 'It's The End Of The World As We Know It' the day of the Brexit Vote. Hang in There." Others include, "Dear person in the Theater District who listened to the Hamilton soundtrack 5,376 times this year. Can you get us tickets?", “Dear person who played “Sorry” 42 times on Valentine’s Day, What Did You Do?” and "Dear person who made a playlist called: 'One Night Stand With Jeb Bush Like He's a Bond Girl in a European Casino.' We have so many questions." 

Spotify reached for 40 million paid subscribers in September. 

Compare the Meerkat - Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman could win a Golden Globe for this performance!

In this 40 second Meerkat ad, meerkats Sergai and Aleksandr fight for the attention of the Australian actress. Kidman sneaks out to a hot date with Sergai, which leaves Alexsandr fuming. 

Arnold Schwarzenegger was the previous star to grace a Compare the Meerkat campaign. 

Always #likeagirl - Girl emojis 

Always makes a point that female emojis are terrible. We agree. 

In continuing their #likeagirl campaign, which launched in June 2014, Always blasts emojis for its stereotypical representations of genders, and encourage females to share the types of female emojis they would prefer to see.  

This ad succesfully raises the connotation of feminine strength, removing the stigma of being "like a girl", and playfully uses the popularity of emojis within popular culture, particularly amongst young women. 

Adidas “Football needs creators” 

The film and story-like advert captures Paul Pogba's journey as a young troublesome child to his return to Manchester United. 

John Lewis, Buster the Boxer

If you haven't heard or seen about Buster the Boxer, you must have been hiding under a rock for the last few weeks. 

One of the most heartwarming campaigns of the year, Buster the Boxer, for giant department store John Lewis, is a hands down winner in our hearts. 

The Christmas ad went viral - In the first day of release, Buster the Boxer received an impressive 48,000 mentions on Twitter!

Which ad spoke most to you?