We’re recapping some of the best ads from February, and we promise they aren’t all Super Bowl ads you’ve already seen.
February brought us an impressive selection of 30-second spots, extended videos, and interactive campaigns. We even included a particularly clever banner ad.
Whatever projects you’re preparing to tackle next month, take a look through these hilarious, emotionally stirring, and unique advertising efforts and get inspired to meet your next big creative challenge.
10 of the Best Ads from February
When your mascot is a little creepy, you might as well fully embrace it and see where it takes you. That’s the key lesson from Snuggle’s Valentine’s Day campaign, which allows you to customize videos of the brand’s teddy bear mascot serenading photos of your loved ones (or just co-workers you really want to freak out).
Since the animated plush toy’s first appearance in 1983, “Snuggle the Bear” has toed the line between cloyingly cute and nightmarish — and the fabric softener brand is enthusiastically willing to keep this unique form of delightful creepiness rolling along. The Valentine’s Day effort, produced by Detroit-based agency Campbell Ewald, is wonderfully tongue-in-cheek, interactive, and compulsively shareable.
2) TV 2 Danmark
“Maybe there’s more that brings us together than we think,” this ad from Danish television network TV 2 muses. Released in late January, the three-minute video opens on a room full of Danes dividing themselves into boxes based largely on superficial traits — their professions, hometowns, economic backgrounds etc.
As they stand uncomfortably in their boxes, a man comes out and begins asking questions that dig a little deeper into who they are as people: Who was the class clown? Who are stepparents? Who’s seen a UFO?
As the Danes form new groups based on their answers to the questions, the tension breaks — we begin to see smiles, laughs, and friendly pats on the back. It’s an honest, refreshing depiction of breaking artificial boundaries and discovering common ground in unexpected places.
Letting go of our once-cherished possessions isn’t always easy. In this ad for online marketplace Letgo, a mother is deeply committed to keeping her daughter’s childhood rocking-horse — even with a tornado threatening to swallow her up.
Did you know over 60% of banner ad clicks are actually accidents? As this case study from Ikea Sweden’s latest digital ad campaign explains, most people clicking on your ads aren’t interested in what you have to say at all — they’re just victims of “fat thumb syndrome.”
To make a friendlier, more human banner ad, Ikea started experimenting with what they call “Perceptive Banners” — banner ads that when clicked, check to make sure your click was intentional.
5) It’s A 10
Hair care brand It’s A 10 debuted their first-ever Superbowl ad this year — and they weren’t messing around. They enlisted the expertise of Oscar-winning director Bryan Buckley and agency Havas Edge to develop this diversely cast, unconventional take on a beauty product ad.
6) The Climate Coalition
This ad from the Climate Coalition — a group of over 100 climate-related UK charities — combines stunning cinematic imagery with a heartfelt script from British poet Anthony Anaxagorou.
Starring Game of Thrones’ Charles Dance alongside actors Miranda Richardson, Jason Isaacs, and David Gyasi, “A Love Song” is both a foreboding call to action on climate change, and an uplifting tribute to natural beauty. The short film was created by RSA Films.
Wieden + Kennedy New York created this clever campaign for Spotify, imagining literal interpretations of some very oddly named user playlists on the music streaming service. In the ad below, musical group DNCE appears hilariously baffled upon learning that one of their upbeat pop songs was included in a real user playlist called “play this at my funeral.”
Comedian Kristen Schaal stars opposite a very confused Verizon support representative in this offbeat spot for T-mobile. Aired during the Super Bowl, the Publicis Seattle-produced ad shines with Schaal in all her usual quirky glory.
9) Take Note
This ad for Toronto-based paper store Take Note might only clock in at three and a half minutes, but it manages to pack in a lifetime of emotions. The video follows a couple throughout the entirety of their relationship, shown only in the handwritten notes they leave each other.
Created by BBDO Toronto, the surprisingly touching spot is a reminder of how powerful a simple handwritten note to a loved one can be.
10) Cards Against Humanity
Did you just get tricked into watching 30 seconds of a stationary, silent potato during the Super Bowl? Yes, you did.
This Cards Against Humanity spot is undeniably bad (It’s quite literally just 30 seconds of a potato), but the stunt was a clever, well-executed move consistent with the viral card game’s unusual brand. The ad itself contained no branding or references to Cards Against Humanity, but the company published a tongue-in-cheek Medium post called “Why Our Super Bowl Ad Failed” that hilariously recounts their misguided thought process behind the ad.