World Cup ads predictably dominate this month’s Unruly Global Ads Chart. With the biggest sporting event on the planet in full swing, it’s no surprise to see almost half of the top 20 video ads of the month are football-related. Just like last month, Colombian pop princess Shakira’s collaboration with yoghurt brand Activia “La La La” leads the way. Dubbed the ‘unofficial World Cup theme song’, it attracted a mammoth 2.72 million shares during June, making it not only the most shared football ad of the year, but also the sixth most shared ad of all time.
Brands unaffiliated with this year’s World Cup have certainly dominated this year’s World Cup. Despite creating half as many videos as FIFA-affiliated advertisers, commercials from non-sponsors have so far generated almost three-quarters of the shares. As with previous World Cups, Nike is one of the standout stars, so far attracting more than three times more shares than its fiercest rival adidas, who has been an official World Cup sponsor since 1970.
This month’s chart features two ads from the Oregon-based company. In second spot is “The Last Game”, an ad designed in a style familiar to Pixar films like Toy Story or The Incredibles. It depicts a world in which homogenous clone footballers have taken over the sport, leaving mavericks like Zlatan and Neymar Jr. to take other professions, such as hairdressers. It’s a little like the town that banned dancing in Footloose, only with Wayne Rooney instead of Kevin Bacon.
Seeing hugely famous athletes Disney-fied up is a strange joy, and the short film flies by with wit and imagination. With nearly 900,000 shares last month alone, it won’t be Nike’s last game either. Nike’s epic “Winner Stays” also makes June’s top 20 (18th), while adidas’ “House Match”, featuring David Beckham, is eighth.
In fourth is another ad from a brand not affiliated with the World Cup – Beats By Dre’s “Game Before The Game”. Backed up by a rousing soundtrack from Jamie N Commons & The X Ambassadors, the video features football stars and fans preparing for the match of their lives by going through their various superstitious pre-match rites. Neymar listens to a message from his dad, Cesc Fabregas kisses his ring four times, while Luis Suarez kisses the tattoo on his wrist of his children’s names. It’s an incredible watch, enough to get the pulses racing of even the most ardent football refuseniks.
Other new football-related ads to make it on to the top 20 are Banco de Chile’s compelling “Comercial Mineros” and a commercial from Middle-Eastern telecommunications company Ooredoo which stars Argentinian soccer superstar Lionel Messi. Castrol’s “Footkhana” is still the most shared ad from an official partner.
But World Cup ads did not have it all their own way during June. After scoring a huge social video hit last year with its wickedly funny “The Camp Gyno”, tampon subscription service HelloFlo returned last month with yet another fresh approach to feminine hygiene marketing. Created to promote its period starter kit, “First Moon Party” features a young girl so desperate to join her “blood sisters” at school she paints red nail varnish on a sanitary towel to fake her first period. Her mum quickly rumbles her, but plays along, organising what can only be described as the party from hell to celebrate her daughter’s milestone.
The result is probably the funniest ad about tampons ever made. Intentionally funny, at least. And judging by the ad’s immediate success, I’m not the only one giggling. The video has already surpassed the original, attracting 232,306 shares in just over a week, making it the ninth most shared ad last month. With lines like “Grandpa is bobbing for ovaries like a champ” and “do you know how hard it is to find a uterus pinata?”, the ad’s edgy humour and awkward subject matter will certainly not be to everyone’s tastes. But you certainly have to take your hat off to HelloFlo for coming up with a piece of content that would not look out of place during an episode of hit US TV show Modern Family.
Another feminine care brand also makes it on to this month’s top 20. But unlike HelloFlo’s humorous spot, P&G brand Always uses a more inspirational message to get people sharing its ad, “Like A Girl”. Directed by notable documentary photographer and filmmaker Lauren Greenfield, whose work has cataloged the self-esteem crisis among American females, the video empowers young women to turn an insulting phrase into a positive affirmation.
As one participant observes the end of the film, “why can’t ‘run like a girl’ also mean ‘win the race’?”. It’s a compelling message, which certainly resonated across the social web last month. Attracting more than 219,00 shares in just a few days, “Like A Girl” was the 11th most shared ad during June.
Other new ads to make it into the top 20 this month include a safety ad from Volkswagen that is sure to make you think twice about texting while driving and trailers for the latest chapters of the successful video game franchises FIFA, Assassin’s Creed, Mortal Kombat and Grand Theft Auto.