The 2016 Oscars Commercials: Smart Brand Ads


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Despite it being the lowest, Oscars telecast in eight years, a significant audience of 34.3 million people tuned in from the US to watch the 2016 Oscars... and that's not even including the hundreds of people at viewing parties, nor the international viewership. Oscar night is important, not just for the stars and starlets that are in the hopes of winning that 13-and-a-half-inch little golden statue... but for brand marketing as well. 

In this blog, Hollywood Branded takes a look at how brands used their Oscars association to creatively market their companies and which brands had home run wins with their commercial spots. 



Many would say the hands-down winner of the "Best Oscars 2016 Commercial Campaign" was this everyman's department store with their hilarious four spots. Each ad featured an ordinary person in an ordinary situation like being invited to a tea party or being allowed to have a shotgun in the car. It turned quite unordinary when the people went to say thank you, and out of their mouths came famous Oscar acceptance speeches to the bewilderment of all those around them. Kohl's took celebrity endorsement in a creative and hilarious direction - and it totally worked. Below are the four ads.

Movie Night

"Control of the remote is a powerful thing: be thankful for it."

This spot featured a family gathering around for movie night. Yet when the dad goes to hand over the remote, we get a plot twist.... his daughter lets him keep it. Overcome with gratitude, outpours Cuba Gooding Jr.'s Oscar acceptance speech for his role in Jerry Maguire.




Front Seat

"Getting to ride in the front seat? Now that's worth a thank-you speech."

The joy of front-seat privileges from your older brother is a moment worthy only of an Oscar speech from Whoopi Goldberg. Or at least that's what happens in this spot from Kohl's as Whoopi's acceptance speech for her 1990 appearance in Ghost comes out of the young girl's mouth. 



The Duchess

"A tea party fit for a duchess in your honor? Time to thank the great kids in your life."

In this spot, (which we must say is our personal favorite) a woman is completely overwhelmed with gratitude after being invited to her daughter's tea party - so much so that Penelope Cruz's Oscar acceptance speech for Vicky Cristina Barcelona just happens to be the first thing that comes out of her mouth.



 The Sleepover

"When you get what you want, thank the whole team that got you there."

Everyone who's ever been a kid knows that winning feeling you get when both sets of parents approve a sleepover. It's a dream come true... like Jeff Bridges winning an Academy Award for Best Actor in Crazy Heart. 



 Google - Android

Google's Android platform kept their ad simple yet absolutely heartwarming in this Oscars spot. Famous rivals Rock, Paper, and Scissors use their unique abilities to overcome their difficulties and become friends. This commercial adds to Oscar night sappiness as well as furthering their "Be Together. Not The Same." campaign. Adorable. 



Samsung - Galaxy S7

Samsung asks you "Why can't you have it all?" in their Oscars night spot for their new device. Their ad was absolutely bursting with celebrities from Lil Wayne, Wesley Snipes, Doc Rivers, to James Harden. And at the end is 1997 Academy Award nominee William H. Macy, as the spokesperson for the Galaxy. Or is it all just in virtual reality?




Virtual reality is a hot topic for tech companies and marketers right now, and Samsung is at the front of its game with the new Galaxy. Read more about how your brand can get involved in VR in our blog, "Virtual Reality - The Future Of Product Placement?

 Why Is Star Power Important?

Partnering with a celebrity on a major level can completely renovate your brand's image. Before you spend another dollar on traditional advertising, consider how you can leverage the power of celebrities as part of your marketing campaigns. Our video provides answers to combat common advertising challenges marketers face daily.

Learn how entertainment marketing engages consumers