- Google’s “Home Alone”-themed campaign, starring Macaulay Culkin, was the most-viewed holiday ad, racking up 70.7 million views to date, AdAge reported, citing an AcuityAds analysis. The campaign, “Home Alone Again,” featured scenes from the iconic 1990 film, while showcasing Google Assistant products. The analysis is based on publicly available video views for branded content, including brand-driven and audience-driven clips.
- Duracell’s holiday campaign, “Christmas 2018,” was a close second with 70.3 million views. The ad shows what could happen if Santa didn’t trust Duracell.
- The ads filling out the list are, in order: Tiffany & Co.’s “Believe in Dreams: A Tiffany Holiday,” 47.3 million views; Apple “Share Your Gifts,” 39.2 million; Target “Target Holiday 2018,” 36.7 million views; Iceland Foods #NoPalmOilChristmas, 29 million views; Nordstrom “Let’s Go Gifting!” with 28. 9 million; John Lewis “The Boy and The Piano,” 27.5 million views; Keurig “Holiday Surprise,” with 23.8 million; and, Louis Vuitton “Louis Vuitton’s Enchanted World of Gifts,” with 23.3 million views.
Holiday marketing campaigns often feature sentimental and heartwarming themes, but this year, humor seems to have resonated most with consumers. Examining the elements of the campaigns that made the AcuityAds list could help marketers find the right mix for developing compelling holiday campaigns in the future. One takeaway is that for brands targeting millennials, sentimentality may not be the best approach. Millennials often want brands to stand for something and are most responsive to ads that suggest that they be a part of the solution or embody a brand’s values.
Google was able to pair humor with nostalgia, another tactic that appeals to millennials, for a successful campaign aimed at driving sales of its smart home devices. Paying tribute to the highest-grossing Christmas movie of all time and embracing a ’90s throwback helped the brand attract attention on social media from fans of the film and consumers interested in smart devices. Google has a 20% share of the smart speaker market, according to a Voicebot study referenced in a MediaPost report.
Strong storytelling and visuals are other elements that attract attention. Two of the ads in the AcuityAds top 10 featured animation. Apple’s “Share Your Gifts” shows a woman using Apple products to create, but she’s afraid to share her creativity. When her papers accidentally fly out of the window and are shared, she sees that her creativity brings joy to others. Iceland Foods’ #NoPalmOilChristmas combines animation and a compelling story to highlight an important cause. The ad, narrated by actress Emma Thompson, is set up like a children’s story and relates the tale of a “Rang-tan,” who tells a little girl about humans destroying her home for palm oil.