I love to frequent AdWeek. One of my favorite habits is to watch the ads they feature, and sometimes I happen upon one that really pulls me in. That’s how I felt after watching IKEA’s new commercial featuring none other then… their catalogue! Personally I find the execution hilarious and quite impactful. They definitely found a way to convey a strong message.
The ad makes a mockery of technology; specifically how new products are introduced into the marketplace. It is a spoof of how Apple interviews its employees prior to the launch of a new device. IKEA nails the same air of mystery and intrigue that Apple employs. But it also addresses people’s desire to have the latest and greatest. They spin print materials to look like a new technology, and point out that tactile can still be a great experience. Humor is a challenging approach to advertising, but if it is executed successfully the result can be very effective.
They really hit home by questioning if we can ever just be content with where we are in life? Do we always need the latest and greatest? That is what advertisers try their hardest to convince us of. The question that this ad asks though, is why is print something we ever stopped relying on. Sure its very convenient to have information delivered to you as instantaneously as an iPad or personal computer can, but is it necessary? For hundreds of generations, people did just fine with printed materials and consuming information in non-electronic formats. IKEA points out that it can still be a successful and gratifying experience.
Ads are a good way for companies to get behind important topics in today’s society and show consumers what they stand for. Clearly the catalogue is a successful component of IKEA’s business. They distribute over 200 million copies annually, in 27 languages, in 38 different countries. Since it’s an annual catalogue they focus on impressive design, and people often wonder how they can get their hands on it.
So, this could be a harkening back to the all-important era of print. OR is it just part of the whole “retro is cool” phase that we seem to be going through. Advertisers and brands like to align themselves with trends that their consumers are interested in. It is an easy way for them to connect with their audience and quickly capture their attention. Trends that were once popular always circle back into use.
Despite it being a well-executed attempt at making consumers question how much we need to rely on technology today, is it enough to make you think twice about always relying on your electronic devices to get things done? Personally, I still love the tactile experience of consuming information, but this ad isn’t exactly earthshattering enough to make me ditch my electronics. Where do you stand?
Nudd, T. (2014, September 3). Ad of the Day: Ikea Hilariously Pitches Its 2015 Catalog as the Coolest Gadget Ever. Retrieved September 3, 2014, from http://www.adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/ad-day-ikea-hilariously-pitches-its-2015-catalog-cutting-edge-technology-159846
About IKEA. (n.d.). Retrieved September 3, 2014, from http://www.ikea.com/ms/en_IE/about_ikea/the_ikea_way/faq/