Ad reels: in the spotlight: social purpose
Here at Flamingo London we make sure we stay on top of the latest output from the world of advertising. Every month we gather together to watch the latest and greatest ads from the UK and beyond, discussing what we think works and what we think doesn’t (the more debate the better of course!).
With a new wave of culturally relevant brands defining a social purpose that goes beyond profit – something we wrote about recently in Campaign – there’s been a recent glut of ads from brands that put their social missions front and centre.
When done best, social purpose leverages synergies between a brand’s product benefits and social good. Always’ award-winning ‘Like a Girl’ campaign is a great example of this. It’s a call to arms to reclaim the positives of being a girl at the big emotional level, and one which can clearly be helped along functionally by the brand’s sanitary pads.
Image insert (above): YouTube: Always #LikeAGirl
Sometimes brands need to work a little harder to make the link. Pedigree’s ‘dogs bring out the good in people’ campaign, divided the room; while some were barely holding back the tears, others struggled to see the synergies between pet food and social harmony.
And everyone agreed that while defining a social mission at brand level is the crucial first step, credibility can be furthered when a brand uses comms to showcase its social mission programmatically. Kenco use their ads to show how they engage boys who are at risk of joining gangs.
Image insert (below):YouTube: Coffee vs Gangs – Kenco TV Commercial Ad
More and more brands are going beyond this and incorporating behaviour change ambitions into their social missions – Birds Eye encouraging us to waste less food is a great example. This sort of campaign may be more familiar to us from outside the private sector, but as the new era of social purpose starts to chip at the traditional divides between corporate, public and third sector, we believe that brands have much to learn from public bodies and charities.
This work didn’t disappoint; this ad about wind power from Germany, this campaign for organ donation in Argentina and Sport England’s genuinely inspirational ‘This Girl Can’ film were some of our favourites, in terms of both creativity and hypothesised effectiveness.
As more and more brands communicate around their social and sustainable credentials, we’re lucky to have a consistent pipeline of great creative work with a social core for us to watch, enjoy and debate. What’s your favourite social purpose ad? Share your opinions in the comments box below.
Article by Jessica Enoch