Brands often put their best foot forward in their advertisements at the start of a new year. Here are 4 strong advertisements from the month of January, and what made them so impactful:


NBA: “Honor King Martin Luther King Jr.”

What made this advertisement effective:

  • The NBA rebranded in 2020 to put social justice at the heart of their franchise. The “Honor King MLK” ad reveals that they intend to continue their fight for social justice in 2021, revealing the brand’s values and consistency.
  • Running a relevant ad on an important holiday is a strong, strategic marketing choice.

Ohio Department of Health: “Limit Your Risk”

What made this advertisement effective:

  • Ohio Department of Health’s use of Jenga as imagery conveys their message in a way that many viewers can easily understand.
  • The call to action is clear. This is important for any advertisement who wants to drive their audience to act in any way.

Frito-Lay: “Evidence”

What made this advertisement effective:

  • The Superbowl is coming up next month; with such a large, primetime viewership, this is a huge opportunity for businesses and brands to advertise. But rather than simply wait for the game to run their advertisements, Frito-Lay ran this advertisement early as a teaser to their full, Superbowl commercial. This creates anticipation and sparks curiosity among viewers.
  • The use of a celebrity, in this case, Ashton Kutcher, is a strategic marketing move. Ashton Kutcher, in particular, has a good reputation and having him represent their brand reflects positively on Frito-Lay.

Carlsberg: “Probably the Best Beer in the World”

What made this advertisement effective:

  • Carlsberg utilizes humor and dramatics to emphasize the benefits of an alcohol-free beer as opposed to an alcoholic one.
  • Carlsberg capitalized on the new year. They recognized that people may make a New Year’s resolution to stop drinking, and they ran their advertisement shortly after the new year. Timing is a huge part of the strategic marketing plan.


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