The mantra of TED is Ideas Worth Spreading. Taking this notion, and applying it to advertising, TED set up a competition Ads Worth Spreading three years ago to celebrate creativity and humanity in the industry. The third round of winners has been announced, and each commercial goes beyond being advertising, to being a two minute appeal to human emotions.
The non-profit organization is famous for its 18 minute inspirational talks that have been ongoing since the 80s but have reached new heights with the internet, recently reaching 1 billions views. It may seem like an odd connection: a non-profit and advertising, but TED is praising those ads that use the platform to make an emotional connection between brand and audience. As Ronda Carnegie, Head of Global Partnerships at TED explains:
Advertising is a strategic business that constantly challenges creatives to bring individuals, brands and organizations together. We created the Ads Worth Spreading initiative to celebrate the ads that successfully cultivate this engagement.
Like TED, Ads Worth Spreading, are compelling stories that speak to consumers just as a TEDTalk presenter might connect with an audience. Both are inspirational and powerful tools of sharing and spreading authentic and powerful ideas.
The winning commercials are not just good advertising but meaningful content that resonates with the consumers on a deeper level by inserting humanity into the advertising. Says Carnegie:
Viewers want to experience an emotional connection, an intellectual understanding or stunning creative work. Audiences want to be rewarded for the time they devote to watching an ad, and advertisers are recognizing that and delivering more meaningful pieces in traditional ads, online video and integrated marketing.
Each ad falls into one of six categories: Talk, Social Good, Cultural Compass, Creative Wonder, Brand Bravery and Education and according to Laurie Coots, chief marketing officer of TBWA Worldwide and a judge at the inaugural AWS competition, the commercials all have one thing in common:
They are brave, they are honest, they capture a sense of meaning. I think of ads worth spreading as ones that set out to ignite something more primal in the viewer–to get them to think something or most likely to do something.
From the comedically morbid Melbourne Metro PSA ‘Dumb Ways To Die’ to the tear-jerking Expedia ‘Find Your Understanding’, these ads represent the best in the biz. So, spread the word and prepare to be moved.
See all 10 winners below: