Everyone wants a happy ending, but how do you tap into that for a successful ad campaign?
People are skeptical and risk-averse, which makes our jobs creating advertisements a challenge at times, but people also crave success, recognition, and that happy ending. This is why get-rich-quick schemes have been so successful in the past (for the the guy on top that is) – though it sounds too good to be true, the chance for that happy ending makes it seem worthwhile (at the time). It’s been no secret for quite some time that people buy products for how it makes them feel; they purchase for the benefit of it making them happy.
So how do you make a successful happy ending? One way is to make it achievable.
Look at the recent (what I like to call) “Engagement Kitty” commercial from Fancy Feast. If you remember Fancy Feast advertisements of the past they focused on being the “luxurious” choice for cats. They’d show some snobby-looking, fancy, purebred cat lounging in what looked to be the set of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous then go running to eat Fancy Feast out of a crystal bowl after the butler ‘tinks’ it with a fork. It gets the message across: Fancy Feast is for fancy cats, and your cat can be fancy by feeding it Fancy Feast. Did it really connect with their target audience, though?
Enter the ‘Engagement Kitty’ and suddenly Fancy Feast is the #1 best-liked ad in March and the YouTube video of the commercial is currently at over 1 million views. If you take apart the ad, you still have a lot of the elements Fancy Feast is known for. Purebred cats, upper-class suburban setting… but so craftily done these elements become unconsciously absorbed where the main focus is on the sweet engagement story unfolding with the help of an adorable, fuzzy little kitty and ultimately – a happy ending.
Finding an achievable happy ending enables a brand to connect with their target audience. Like Fancy Feast, instead of polarizing “You’re not rich, but you can feel like you are” approach, a sentimental approach that resounds with a mass majority has found them success.
What are your thoughts on happy endings in advertising?
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