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The Ads that Moved Us in 2017

Editor’s Note: Clicking on the Ace Metrix source link at the end of the article will provide access to view the commercials referenced.

“These days, ads need to provide a certain ’emotional’ reward for viewers to watch until the end, or even get them to pay attention in the first place. It’s more than just breaking through the clutter; ads need to establish an emotional connection with viewers. But in today’s cord cutting media environment, that is no easy task,” said Peter Daboll, CEO of Ace Metrix. “All of these ads excelled in making us feel something. Whether it was humor, inspiration, tugging at our heartstrings or downright ‘what was that?!’, real viewer reactions created these lists of the best of the best,” added Daboll.

The following lists were derived through a combination of machine learning and Natural Language Processing methods looking at the frequency of emotive words and phrases used in viewer comments. With over 8,000 video ads analyzed in 2017, and over 3 million viewer comments.

The Most Heartfelt Ad of 2017 — Subaru’s ad, “Share Kindness,” pulled the most heartstrings with its powerful message “Love. It Makes the World a Better Place,” and its promotion of Subaru’s charitable event, Share the Love. Even though it didn’t show any Subaru vehicles, “Share Kindness” resonated extremely well with brand considerers, and across auto intenders.

Hyundai’s “A Better Super Bowl”, Walmart’s “#Better Together”, AT&T’s “Rise Up” and MasterCard’s “Sign Up” followed.

The Funniest Ads of 2017 — Skittles “Romance,” was also recognized as a Super Bowl LI Standout. Not only did the ad achieve high Breakthrough (combined Likeability and Attention scores), but it also successfully drove Desire for Skittles. The humor appealed to viewers across all demographics. SkinnyPop and Kia were next in this category.

The Weirdest Ads of 2017 — Weird doesn’t mean bad. Some ads are made with the main purpose of grabbing attention, as is often the case with those that leave us with a weird feeling. Or brands are targeting a specific, narrow demographic, whose message or language might not be understood by others. Mike Dive, the director of Halo Top’s “Eat The Ice Cream,” created the ad with the intention of being “creepy enough to capture the internet’s attention.”


Insights Blog. (2018, January 4). The Ads that Moved Us in 2017Ace Metrix.