by Montserrat Cataldi

Everywhere we go, we are bombarded with messages. Messages that remind us why we need to buy this product, try this service, or choose this brand over the other. Thousands of brands are trying to get to our pockets on a daily basis.

However, we ignore most of this messages – we don’t even realize they are there. What makes us remember certain ads while totally neglect others?

We fall in love with commercials when they truly touch us and inspire us to be optimistic about something we truly care about. When ads appeal to our guiding values, passions, and will, they tend to stick with us for a long time. Not just the ads – also the companies behind them.

When circumstances are trying to keep us apart, these companies are fighting to keep us connected, spread positivity, and celebrate our heroes.

To all my fellow marketing nerds, here are my favorite COVID-19 ads. Enjoy!

We fall in love with commercials when they truly touch us and inspire us to be optimistic about something we truly care about.

1. Heineken


This ad encourages us to stay home and socialize responsibly while illustrating situations we can all relate to during COVID-19 times. I mean, the connectivity issues… they always seem to occur right at that moment when the meeting just became interesting, the professor begins talking about an upcoming exam, or your friends are discussing your favorite Netflix show.

Heineken’s ad makes us feel connected to our peers during a time when we feel a million planets apart. In the ad, there are phones falling in your face in the middle of an e-conversation, wifi issues, pets showing up in your camera, and friends catching up while having a beer.

But beneath it all relies a positive message: circumstances are currently preventing us to organize the best get-together, but they cannot stop us from getting together and having a beer with our friends.

Back to the Bars

“There’s one thing better than a night out. Another night out.”

In the following ad, Heineken encourages us to take care of our community by taking the required safety measures while on public. It’s a great stay-at-home campaign, as it reminds us that these measures are the only ones that will allow us to get out again in the future.

2. Budweiser – Checking In, That’s Whassup

In their funny but also heartfelt ad, Bud encourages us to stay connected and check-in with friends. In these crazy and unprecedented times, it’s normal to feel discouraged and alone. That’s why Bud points out that there are available resources for everyone in case we need to talk to someone.

“Staying connected matters more than ever right now. Checking in, that’s whassup.”

Thank you, Bud.

3. Burger King – Stay Home of the Whopper

With their new ad, Burger King prompts us to become heroes by staying home. They remind us that we can still enjoy their delicious burgers by ordering them through their app, so that quarantine doesn’t harm our capacity to delight our taste buds.

The ad reminds us that we all need to do our part to get through these difficult times.

4. The Coca-Cola Company

To the Human Race

Let’s be honest, we are all big Coca-Cola fans. How can you not love them?

The Coca-Cola brand seeks to inspire moments of optimism and happiness, as well as to refresh people’s bodies and spirits. It’s safe to say that they have been successful at spreading positivity and optimism, even during difficult times.

Thank you Coca-Cola. You never let us down!

Open Like Never Before

This ad is pure awesomeness. It inspires us to think about everything we have experienced during this pandemic, find meaning from it, and use it to become better people. It reminds us that a better future will come, we just have to be open like never before.

5. Nike – You Can’t Stop Us

“When things aren’t fair, we’ll come together for change. And no matter how bad it gets, we will always come back stronger. Because nothing can stop what we can do together.”

That quote says it all. Nike inspires us to keep going.

PS: Loved the “every-day” athlete shots from the girl playing tennis in the living room, the man jumping in the pool, and the girl riding her horse bare back.

6. Uber – Thank You For Not Riding.

“Thank you for not riding.”

A very creative ad with a heartfelt message: Staying home is the best way to take care of our loved ones right now.

7. KFC – F for Family

In their ad, F for Family, KFC celebrates and thanks their frontline employees risking their healthy and safety to serve its customers. KFC did so by asking delivery drivers to deliver food to those people they haven’t seen in a while. The results were magical.

“Because sharing will be part of our new normal.”

8. Airbnb – #StayHome

Airbnb hosts found new ways to keep us all together, this time online. In their ad, #StayHome, they show us how connected we can all be, even while staying home.

9. McDonald’s – Still the Same

It’s good to know some things still haven’t changed. McDonald’s Still the Same ad is everything we needed to hear. It’s both comforting and positive, just what we all need right now.

10. Apple – Creativity Goes On

Apple’s ad shows us how people around the US are dealing with lockdown. The powerful ad inspires us to not allow quarantine life to steal the creativity and innovation away from you.

Creativity goes on, even in lockdown.

Ads and commercials serve as a window to companies’ personalities, values, and culture. They reveal to us not only how they see the world, but also how they imagine the future.

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