The shift to digital campaigns and social media that we’ve seen on the MyAdbox platform is hardly surprising when recent studies have found that half of the world’s population is now on Social Media. The findings also have 1 in 3 consumers actively using Social Media to research brands and search for information about the products they desire. The impact of Social channels on purchase behavior is more powerful than ever. So, it makes sense when reviewing the great creative of 2020, we need to be turning our eyes to Social Media.

For marketers, the challenges of creating great social content are different. What used to be a secondary tactic in an overarching marketing strategy is now stepping squarely into the spotlight - “It needs to be considered and often prioritized at every step of the planning process,” said Stephen Panico at BuzzStream. He believes it’s crucial to keep freshening up ad content and keep it real – after all, Social Media moves fast. “It’s 2020,” he said, “it’s time to remove stock photos … and put real faces and real insights on your feed… authenticity is king.”

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So, what are the best examples of Social Media ads of 2020 so far? As you’d expect, no list would be complete without the odd pandemic concept.

Here’s our top 5:

#1- Stay at home with Guinness.

A wonderful static Instagram post that captures an important pandemic message and heroes the brand elegantly, by Dublin creative Luke O'Reilly.

The stark simplicity of the ‘Stay at Home’ message beneath a sofa doubling as the creamy head on a pint of Guinness is not just a piece of advertising genius, it’s a beautiful, timeless example of brilliant art direction (you can see that pint glass) bringing the concept to life. As with most great advertising ideas, the picture does all the work. The headline is straight, minimal and tiny – barely visible to complete the beer image. It captures the brand’s cheeky personality perfectly.

# 2 - Seinfeld’s nemesis back just in time for U.S. election.

He might have been missing from our screens for more than two decades, but Newman is back to deliver an important message from the U.S. Postal Service in the lead-up to the US elections.

Seinfeld fans would no doubt recall Newman’s occupation as a sly postman, so it was the perfect moment for actor Wayne Knight to reprise the role and remind a country ravaged by COVID-19 that if you’re going to send off a postal vote, you better get in early. Along the way, he shoots some nice barbs back at Trump – who has been less than complimentary to the US Postal system of late, “That guy’s never even licked a stamp.” The piece, created by former Seinfeld writer David Mandel exhibits inspired timing – just what Social Media craves and scrollers thrive on.

# 3 – The moldy Whopper.

Launched at the beginning of the pandemic, the moldy Burger King ad might a little long in the tooth now, but it’s still brilliant because it breaks every rule in the advertising playbook. In 45 seconds, the YouTube ad traverses 34 days of decay thanks to seamless time lapse photography.  Yes, it’s a journey from mouth-watering sizzle to downright disgusting, but what better way than to demonstrate the difference between preservative filled burgers, who could forget the Icelandic Mc burger that has lasted more than a decade with no visible sign of change and, a whopper free from artificial preservatives? The tagline ‘The beauty of no artificial preservatives?’ is inspired and the essence of this campaign drives to ‘Authenticity’ – the cornerstone virtue of successful Social Media content.

# 4 – All alone and all time.

The pandemic has delivered us some great campaigns – and arguably none better than this one from Banff Springs Hotel in Canada, entitled ‘The Art of Waiting.’ From dancing bellhops to singing chefs it’s a series of mini videos that are crafted brilliantly with a nostalgic flavor aimed at wooing guests back when the doors are thrown open once again.

Superbly shot and Directed, this mini-series demonstrates the power of video content in Social Media, simplicity of brand and message. And it’s just a wonderful response to a very difficult time that has been put smiles on people’s faces - that’s why it’s memorable.

# 5 – Perfect and pristine.

Technically a 2019 campaign, but still running and still stunning, Tourism Tasmania’s campaign is all class. The line ‘Come down for air’ brilliantly captures the pristine environment of Australia’s Apple Isle and the wonderful YouTube piece conveys the beauty and majesty of Tasmania with simplicity.

As the pandemic unfolded, the message had extra weight, underscoring the fact that this is one of the purest places to be on the planet right now. It’s a lesson in keeping the message simple with an economy of words and a palette of captivating images – elements that stand out in a Social Media landscape.