Spreading the ad love on Valentine’s Day

While chocolate hearts, cherubic angels with bows and Hallmark cards have nothing to do with the history of St Valentine, they are a bit more light-hearted than the imprisonment and torture of a man in Rome. So rather than condemning the unbridled commercialisation of love (and martyrdom), let’s celebrate some of the good ideas and be thankful that we don’t have to endure the annual retelling of the horror that befell a random historical figure.

Locally, not too much to write home about, proving beyond doubt that New Zealand brands are ruthless corporate entities and are incapable of love (if you’ve seen any good’uns, add them to the comment wall). The Neurological Foundation and DraftFCB took a different approach by “subverting the usual Valentine’s messages“; Whittaker’s added its take on the ‘roses are red’ theme to its Facebook page (although we like this exceedingly romantic one better); and Air New Zealand embraced the cheese with a reference to cloud 9. 


Australian ad agency McCann, which was recently judged first equal with Wieden + Kennedy as the world’s most awarded agency in the Gunn Report, brought back a couple of the Dumb Ways To Die characters for a gruesomely endearing Valentine’s Day spot.

In less than two minutes, Schwarzkopf manages to make all other proposals seem inadequate.

While many of the Winter Olympics advertisers have been playing the LGBT card, a lubricant called Gun Oil gets in on the act and tells a story that it says is not getting told.    

Heineken steps in to help out forgetful lovers who have neglected to make plans for the romantic evening. Released only a few days before Valentine’s Day, this spot aimed to start a conversation on Twitter. And judging by the commentary, the campaign proved to a be quite successful.  

And Google created a special doodle for the occasion. 

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