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Now that computer graphics and high-speed editing-the MTV look-are contributing to a uniform look in TV commercials, where are the advertisers turning to make their advertising stand out? They're reverting to the tired and true-humor, kids, pets and emotional appeal.

1995 was a banner year for outstanding campaigns. Consider we had a new top of the pack (Budweiser); 11 campaigns that didn't repeat from the previous year (highest since 1989); and six that appeared in the top 25 for the first time.

It is probably telling that none of the six newcomers relied on special effects. Indeed, given the visual possibilities of the medium today, it's almost as if high tech itself is suspect. Here is how the six newcomers did it:

"Got Milk" is, at No. 8, the highest-ranking newcomer. Featuring humorous vignettes created by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, it's probably the hardest-working, having increased per capita milk product consumption by more than 2% in the area of its reach.

The next newcomer, and still in the top 10, is "Edy's/Dreyers" (Goldberg Moser O'Neill). Humor has been a part of the "Not your normal ice cream" campaign for a number of years, but the "Baby" was new in 1995.

"Softer Side of Sears" ( Young & Rubicam/ Ogilvy & Mather) has an emotional appeal that put the retailer in the top finishers for the first time since we've been compiling this list.

"M&M," from Mars Inc. checks in with commercials from BBDO Worldwide, New York, using humor to launch new blue M&Ms.

"Kix" from Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, New York, is a humorous twist on that all-time favorite kid, "Mikey." And the last one on the newcomer list, "Red Dog" from BBDO, Toronto, has a feisty canine promoting the new microbrew from Plank Road Brewery, a subsidiary of Miller Brewing Co., trying to ease its way into the latest beer fad. The campaign has given the brand an instant jolt-a 1 share in just more than a year.

Mr. Vadehra is president of Video Storyboard Tests, and he welcomes feedback. Write him at 107 E. 31st St., New York 10016, or fax him at (212) 689-0210. Campaign Clout reports on consumer response to current advertising.

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