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Harry Pettitt Jun 18, 2021

Creative in marketing is more than just a suave logo design, pretty page layout and fancy fonts. In a digital climate that is rich with data-driven activity and constant emphasis on reaching immediate targets, it is easy to overlook the importance of great creative in marketing campaigns. 

Nevertheless, the biggest and best brands on the planet have shown us all that when creative design is utilised correctly, it is the crucial element of any marketing campaign that transforms a company into a brand and connects that brand with its customer base. It is a way to convey the brand values, the offer or even personality in the most enticing and relatable way possible. 

With that in mind, we have come up with a few of our favorite examples of brilliant creative in marketing campaigns over the last few years:

Volkswagen –  Park Assist Campaign

It doesn’t always have to be an awe-consuming work of art to be impactful. This ingenious and simple piece of creative was utilised by VW in 2012 to promote the new Park Assist feature in their fleet range. 

This creative uses symbolism brilliantly to portray the perils of parallel parking and the discomfort that many drivers feel when carrying out the monover. It is funny, tells a clear and concise story (which has been difficult to find in automotive ads in recent years) all whilst using cute animals which is never going to do a campaign any harm.

This creative kicked off a range of other ads that tell the same story in a lighthearted way, showcasing a tight sparking space between a police car and a cluster of ‘biker gang’ motorbikes as well as a similar sized parking space between a portaloo and a hearse.

Marmite – Dividing The Nation

This campaign from Marmite was the perfect example of “Topical Design”. 

Marmite chose to promote their infamous ‘love it or hate it’ niche by riding the tailcoats of a separate topic that completely divided the nation: The European Referendum. 

The genius in this design is the combination of boldness and simplicity. Marmite were clearly very confident in their cheeky messaging that would no doubt incite conversation about the brand. The design utilised the recognisable yellow associated with Marmite whilst also using the bold and brash font which not only emphasise the messaging, but looks remarkably similar to the font used across the political ads during the Brexit period. 

A great example of how design does not always need to be the instigator, sometimes the most efficient use of great design is to act as a vessel to promote the key brand message.

Sharpie – “It all started with a Sharpie”

As a brand that operates deep within the creative art industry, Sharpie are always under pressure to come up with unique, engaging creative for their ad campaigns. As with all campaigns, not everything you produce can take the world by storm, however the ‘It all started with a Sharpie’ campaign certainly did. 

This slightly tongue in cheek campaign was first released in 2013 and is a brilliant example of utilising the biggest brands (and their logos) in the world to make an almost immediate connection with their target demographic and use that connection to deliver a message of inspiration and motivation. 

The best example, in our humble opinion, is the ad that featured the famous ‘Apple’ logo. Whilst paying homage to the trailblazing company, they also showcase their products and deliver a fantastic subliminal message that Sharpie can be the catalyst for something great. 

A brilliant piece of creative that resulted in a year-long plan from Sharpie with variations of the ad featuring other household logos such as “the Rolling Stones” and “Playboy”.

RBH – “Copywriter needed”

Funny campaigns are always successful. IF (and it is a big if) the ad is genuinely funny, then invariably performance always reflects that. However, the temptation to try and produce the next hilarious piece of advertising creative often leads to far more problems than actual results. Nevertheless, in 2020 RBH used an inventive piece of creative genius to advertise for new copy writers. 

The asset used the caption “The pictures people have taken over. We need a words person” which was scribbled beneath a series of images that, when broken down, spell out “Copywriter Needed”. 

By utilising common images that make the audience think, their campaign was a roaring success. A great example of thinking outside the traditional design box and pushing the boundaries. Love this one.

Nissan – High-beam assistant technology

It would be criminal for us to showcase great ad design examples without including this one. Automotive ads can be boring and repetitive, we know that. But Japanese car manufacturer Nissan used their tradition-filled culture to promote their innovative high-beam assistant technology feature.

The high-beam creates a ‘fan’ shape of light around the vehicle so to connect that with Japanese culture, Nissan incorporated a form of ukiyoe paintings onto the fan of light. Historically, this style of painting depicts beautiful imagery of women from Japan in more ‘traditional’ environments. However, in a modern twist, Nissan showcase the modern Japan in the same stunning style by featuring a mobile phone and a boy on a segway whilst still surrounded by the breathtaking Japanese landscape. 

A really wonderful use of design that incorporates tradition, nostalgia and all-round aesthetics. A really brilliant piece of creative that was utilised brilliantly by Nissan throughout their campaign.

Ventura Digital

Is it time to step up your brand’s creative output? Contact our experienced design team today to bring your vision to life and accelerate your marketing activity.