Every year we publish the FeelMore50 – a unique list of the world’s most emotional ads. If you feel nothing, you do nothing, and the ads we celebrate in the FeelMore50 have taken the best route to making people do something: making them feel.
The 2016 list – covering the viral successes, award winners, and notable ads of 2015 – comes out on January 14th. The night before, we’re hosting the FeelMore AdNight in London and New York, celebrating the best ads of the year.
Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be running a few previews of the FeelMore50 on this blog, and putting a spotlight on some of the questions the list will answer. Not just about which ads make people feel the most but about some of the new features in FeelMore and how the list reflects trends in 2015 advertising.
There’s one question that’s more important than any other, though. Why do brands make emotional ads in the first place? You’ve seen the evidence linking emotional campaigns to successful business effects (like profit gain, share gain, decline in price elasticity, and so on). But that’s only half the story.
What we know about brand building tells us that advertising – and particularly creative, emotional advertising – is absolutely critical to successful long-term brand growth. Brand growth is rooted in the 3Fs – Fame, Feeling and Fluency, mental shortcuts that help the brand become an easy, System 1 choice at the moment of decision.
Fame helps a brand come readily to mind. Feeling helps people choose it. And Fluency helps people recognise and process a brand quickly.
What’s not on that list? Differentiating messages. New product information. Appeals to brand loyalty. That stuff is far less important than many marketers believe. It’s an appeal to our slower, System 2, thinking. Which for the most part just rubber-stamps the choices our subconscious, System 1 brains already made using Fame, Feeling and Fluency as shortcuts.
So advertising shouldn’t try too hard to push a message, reel off product information, or tell you how smart you are for buying Brand X not Brand Y (which, let’s face it, you probably buy sometimes too.)
Instead it should create Fame, Feeling and Fluency.
Aim for Fame by going for reach – picking channels that get seen, making content that gets shared, and investing in your five-star ads.
Find the Feeling by making adverts that move people, not lecture them. The kind of adverts that show up in the FeelMore50, in other words.
Speed the decision by making sure the adverts use and build a brand’s unique assets to create Fluency. This does not mean simply plastering the logo everywhere! That kind of thing can damage Feeling. But if there are colours, shapes, characters, sounds and slogans as well as logos that your brand “owns”, then make your ads work harder by using them.
In the FeelMore50 we’ll be showcasing great work that hits each of these three targets, and by doing so sets the wheels of brand growth in motion. Join us on January 14th.