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Emotional advertising has been found to be more effective that rational ads. In the book “Brand Immortality” the author, Harnish Pringle, analyzed over 880 cases from the U.K.’s Institute of Practitioners in Advertising Effectiveness, and discovered that emotional ads are twice as likely to generate large profit gains than rational ones.


The data used in the study spanned a few decades up to 2009, and lot has changed since then. Social media has taken hold with the general public and more companies have embraced it as a marketing medium. We now live in a world were more people are openly discussing their points of view (and emotions) on brands in public forums. Especially online where anonymity grants people the opportunity to behave differently and rally together in larger groups. Surely these new conditions have changed the landscape since the time of Pringle’s study.

Chipotle and Guinness both recently released highly emotional advertisements. Chipotle’s ad depicts a scarecrow working in a world where food processing is the norm and he longs for something fresh. Guinness’ ad depicts men playing wheelchair basketball with a surprise ending. (watch below) Chipotle’s ad is rooted in a large, on-going movement of healthy eating, anti-GMO and fresh, local food. Communities across the web have developed under this umbrella-movement, which allows Chipotle’s message to be easily translated by any group or segment of the movement to be used to support their own agenda. Whereas Guinness, which is emotionally moving in a very bromance kind of a way, only leaves you with happy feelings.

The questions I would like to pose is, “is the emotional trigger enough for a brand to resonate with the audience, or should we be shifting to focus more on movements and selective communities?” Discuss.

Other emotional ads Dove’s “Real Beauty“, and Dodge “God Made a Farmer

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