- TV and digital video analytics firm Ace Metrix released its list of the top-10 Q3 breakthrough ads that had the highest combined scores based on attention and likeability and found compassion, kindness and ingenuity were common themes that put those spots in the top 1% of all ads, per a press release.
- The top two ads on the list — from SeaWorld Parks and Walmart — had philanthropic messages. The SeaWorld spot, “From Park to Planet … We’re on a mission, and it’s BIG,” ranked as the single highest rated travel ad in Ace Metrix’s database. The Walmart ad, “Donation Support,” had the highest attention score among all Q3 ads.
- Overall, viewers preferred ads based on storytelling with strong visuals and uplifting messages, per the report.
The Ace Metrix list of top ads tracks with current trends in marketing, where a renewed focus on positivity and social consciousness has been evident. One explanation for the trend could be that brands and consumers are looking for stability and comfort during a time where culture and politics have become increasingly divisive and contentious. The increased focus on social consciousness also reflects the ethos of younger demographics like millennials and Gen Z.
It isn't always easy for brands to deliver ads with a positive message that can also evoke a strong emotion and grab attention, with brands often quickly hearing from consumers if an ad doesn't feel authentic, something Pepsi found out earlier this year with an ad featuring Kendall Jenner. The winners on Ace Metrix's list serve as an example of some of the ways to be successful when trying to deliver a positive message. For example, Walmart focused on authenticity in its ad for relief support following Hurricane Harvey by using impactful images from the relief efforts following the devastating storm. At the same time, it tapped into the popularity of nostalgic music by using the song "Lean on Me," as the ad's soundtrack.
The other breakthrough ads from Q3, according to Ace Metrix, are: General Electric's "Meet Molly, The Kid Who Never Stops Inventing;" Subaru's "Welcome to the Pack;" Sandals' "Close Destinations;" Mattel's "Find A Way;" Kia's "The Arrival;" Canon's "Perfect Moments;" University of Phoenix's "Carmen," and Southwest's "Grandma."
Two more recent examples of brands pulling at heartstrings include campaigns from 3 Musketeers and Playtex. The Mars candy bar brand added a new element to its yearlong #ThrowShine campaign with “Shine Corps,” a nine-month paid position for teens to "spread the power of positivity to their peers around the country” through personal stories as well as by sharing inspiring stories from other teens. Hane’s Playtex launched #PlaytexPositivity on social media to promote the Love My Curves product line as part of the brand’s support of spreading positivity through words and actions.