Love Overload: A Look Back at Great Romances in Advertising History
Valentine's Day has become another opportune holiday for advertisers to get creative with their messages. This year, for example, Honey Maid celebrated a different kind of love in its latest out of Droga5, while Ikea delivered an instruction manual to help fighting couples sort through their messes.
But let's take a step back and revisit some of the best ads that illustrate what Valentine's Day historically has been about -- romance. Below are some of our favorite brand love stories -- and they weren't all even created for V-Day.
Did we miss any favorites? Leave yours in the comments below.
Google "Parisian Love"
An advertising romance roundup isn't an advertising romance roundup without this poetic classic from Google. It told an epic tale of love through the tiny window of Google's search engine. The spot made a surprise appearance at the Super Bowl in 2010, and blew all other ads away with its powerful simplicity.
Ad Council "Love Has No Labels"
The Ad Council and R/GA captured the world's hearts with this film that used skeletons, of all things, to demonstrate that "Love Has No Labels." The initiative is celebrating its one-year anniversary this week, and recently took a look back on how the world has changed since the original film's debut.
Levi's "Dangerous Liaisons"
What's Valentine's Day without a bit of limb mingling? This steamy classic from Levis and BBH London and directed by Rattling Stick's Ringan Ledwidge sees a passionate couple heat up over the decades -- wearing the styles to match -- with the help of some skillful editing.
Lynx "Getting Dressed"
BBH London and director Ringan Ledwidge really know their way around a toss in the hay, as they also showed in this memorable Lynx commercial that unravels a story of how a couple first meets -- through the clothes they strip off before getting into the sack.
Sagami Original "Love Distance"
This award-winning Japanese ad employed the familiar J-drama plotline of a man and woman, miles apart, sprinting fervently toward each other -- perhaps after realizing their feelings of love or knowing, finally, that they can truly be together. But the curious numbers that appear on the screen add a bit of mystery to the tale. GT Tokyo created and Kan Eguchi directed the spot.
Icelandair: Chez Louis
Romance might be the last thing on the minds of over-tired and stressed parents, but this beautiful spot for Icelandair shows how a mini-moon to a favorite destination can rekindle the flames. Runar Ingi directed the ad, created out of Islenska BBDO.
Gay Pride Week New York: Pride Month Love Story
Caution: there's heartbreak in this beautiful tale about a pair of girls who fall in love in yesteryear, a bold message from last year for Gay Pride Week New York from McGann Zhang and directed by Conor Dooley.
Vorwerk: Robot Love Story
A vacuum is typically something that will send you to the doghouse if you give one as a Valentine's Day present, but here, it becomes the endearing protagonist of a beautiful love story, also starring an adorable robot. The film was created out of Saatchi & Saatchi Dusseldorf and directed by Smuggler's Jamie Rafn, for Swiss company Vorwerk.
Nokia "Splitscreen - A Love Story"
Using just a Nokia N8 phone, director JW Griffiths depicted the parallel lives of a pair of would-be lovers -- one who lives in New York, the other in Paris -- as they make their way to the same spot to finally meet in person. The film won the Nokia Shorts competition in 2011 and was later featured in the Saatchi New Director's Showcase.
Scrabble "Love Story"
Who knew board games could be so romantic? Even if you're not a word nerd, no doubt you'll be entranced by this clever tale that tells a story of how two "mixed up" lovers came together. Created out of Lola Madrid/Portugal, it was artfully directed by Landia's Rodrigo Saavedra.
Wrigley's Extra "The Story of Sara and Juan"
This ad for gum, of all things, will likely go down as one of our all-time favorites and turns us into weepy saps every time we watch it. The premise is pretty basic--It chronicles the love story of Sara and Juan, who begin dating as school kids and then become ever more entwined as they grow up. But their story "wraps up" with a surprise twist that will leave you bawling. The ad was created out of Energy BBDO and directed by Rattling Stick's Pete Riski.