In our business (evaluating the weaknesses for clients so we can help them find ways to improve their market share), it’s often easy to be cynical because so many brands and messages are wrongheaded, cookie cutter and only “of the moment.”
So when something comes along that strikes the right chord (embrace life), attention must be paid. A TV spot called “Embrace Life” from across the pond is now all the rage in social networking circles across the globe, including in the U.S. on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
This spot by Sussex Safer Roads Partnership in Wales promotes wearing your seat belt, and it’s a case study in what works. Here’s why:
1. It is emotional. This is no small thing, as the gluttony of TV advertising is filled with non-emotional, often empty messages. Lately, the trend is toward the comical, which often makes little impact because it’s rarely connected to any brand meaning. But the best marketers realized a long time ago that an emotional connection, even something like the “Teach the World Sing” Coca-Cola spots, have longer shelf life in our minds than something that’s merely entertaining.
This is vitally important because messages are supposed to spur audiences into action. As hilarious as the eTrade “talking baby” spots are, for example, do they really inspire you to get online and start trading?
2. It is aspirational. This is also no small thing, either. So much advertising panders, often mocking the foibles of human existence. (Notice most beer advertising.) But brand at its most powerful is a reflection of who we want to be. (In the beer category, think Corona.) In this case, the aspiration is to be loved.
Maybe it is time many of us took a clue from the Welsh.