In this post we discus 10 successful cartoon style ads. Each video has a different style, feel, and purpose, so you can draw inspiration and apply in your next marketing campaign.

Please consider the following when reading:

  • We tried to keep diversity throughout the list to help you brainstorm.
  • The list isn’t a ranking; the cartoons are not in any particular order.
  • We update the list every 2-3 months; be sure to sign up so you will get a notification when we produce new content.

1. Laird Superfood

Our first cartoon style video is from Laird Superfoods. The brand specializes in producing plant-based products made from all-natural, sustainably grown ingredients. Right away, you can feel the tropical vibes and understand the target audience. Laird appeals to the active consumer who is conscious about what they put into their bodies.

The video features a voice-over from one of the chefs that helps formulate plant-based products and uses tropical-themed background music. We see surfing, people working out, and island imagery. The consumer completely understands the products will be packed with protein to help recovery, utilize tropical fruits, and curated by people who know what they are doing.

Ways this cartoon style video can inspire you:

  • The style fits the target consumer perfectly – island vibes, people doing yoga, tropical scenery.
  • Legitimizes the product. Using the chef is a calculated decision to add credibility and boost consumer confidence.
  • Laird keeps the length short but still is filled with valuable information about the products.

2. Juni Learning

One of the most significant advantages of using cartoon style commercials is the driving engagement. The video from Juni Learning does an incredible job of keeping the viewer interested and wanting to hear more. From the script to the imagery and pace of the cartoon, Juni successfully keeps viewers engaged to the last frame and the call to action.

Juni Learning’s target audience is educated parents who are concerned with their child’s education. The video begins with a problem that hits close to home; the public school system will not fully prepare your child for college or the workforce. Then, Juni offers a solution in the form of its video learning platform.

The implementation of a cartoon style video is perfect for Juni’s product and target audience. In addition, using cartoons makes the service seem fun and enjoyable for children.

Ways this video can inspire you:

  • Fast pace. The video provides a problem, solution, and call to action, successfully hooking the viewer inside of 30 seconds.
  • Colors and imagery that fit the demographic.
  • Using a captivating opening line - “Here’s a bold statement, your child can’t learn everything at school” The parent is hooked within 5 seconds.
Useful Resource
How to Use a Call to Action in a Marketing Video

3. Bath & Body Works

The prominent self-care company makes a bold choice in a cartoon style ad debuting their fall product line-no voice-over. Bath & Body Works takes viewers on a journey through an autumn day in a forest from the point of view of a fox. We see imagery that is relaxing, soothing and makes us wish we smell our screens.

Choosing to go without a voice-over can be risky. You must make sure your product can be sold without any explanation. While most products won’t make the cut, viewers are familiar with Bed & Body Works products and have an idea of what to expect from the brand.

Ways this cartoon ad video can inspire you:

  • The cartoon ad successfully gets us in the mood for heavy fragrance products through storytelling.
  • Using imagery to communicate your value proposition.
  • Roll-out seasonal product releases with cartoon style ads.

4. Matchbox

The legendary toy car company Matchbox uses cartoon style ads to communicate new ways the brand accommodates the modern consumer. When you sell a globally recognized yet straightforward product, you have to get creative to stay relevant. Matchbox successfully communicates how they keep up with the times while still delivering the products that made them famous.

Matchbox’s cartoon video connects with environmentally conscious consumers by showing its efforts to be more sustainable. Through cartoon imagery and the toy car’s journey, viewers are along for a ride on Matchbox’s supply chain. By using recycled materials, shipping products by boat, and removing unnecessary packaging, Matchbox is separating the brand from competitors. The video ends with a car entering a garage, symbolizing the company’s circular business model that allows consumers to give the toys back to the company so the materials can be upcycled.

Ways this  video can inspire you:

  • Utilizing 90 seconds. Matchbox has a lot to say about their shift in the business model; 90 seconds is needed to get their point across effectively.
  • Creative VO, the voice Matchbox uses sounds futuristic, perfectly capturing the vibe of a legacy company adapting to the future of commerce.
  • Incorporating a captivating tagline that fits the cartoon ad. “Matchbox, driving towards a better future”

5. Duolingo

One of the most remarkable aspects of cartoon ads is there are no limitations. In 30 seconds, Duolingo, takes us around the world, guided by their cute mascot and our smartphone. Cartoon imagery allows Duolingo to capture the exciting feeling of travel and effectively communicate the platform’s value in ways that no other medium can.

Duolingo has become a household name and doesn’t need to explain what they do. Instead, the goal of the video is to communicate how you can use the app to broaden your horizons, go new places, try exotic food, and meet new people.

Ways this video can inspire you:

  • Think outside the box. The use of the phone in different scenes is genius in this cartoon.
  • Using fewer words and more compelling images.
  • Showing the viewer how the product can be used rather than what it is.
Must Know
Everything You Should Know About 30-Second Explainer Videos

6. Cadbury Chocolate

Cadbury Chocolate does an excellent job of using cartoon ads to tell a story. The video uses an American romantic comedy style montage to communicate the brand’s collaboration with Oreo.

The cartoon uses minimal VO but still manages to tell a linear story and accomplish the main goal- make the viewer want to try the new Cadbury chocolate.

Ways this cartoon style video can inspire you:

  • Animation allows the producers to give emotion to pieces of candy.
  • Using storytelling to introduce a new product collaboration.
  • Choosing to use music and sound effects rather than a VO.

7. Airbnb

Everyone knows that Airbnb is a vacation rental platform, but users who haven’t used the app won’t understand how intuitive the experience can be. The cartoon style video successfully communicates features that aren’t as well-known, like verified accounts, trip reviews, and direct contact with hosts.

The ‘Should I Airbnb’ campaign utilizes cartoons to demonstrate the user experience. Animation allows the graphics artists to incorporate the user interface, consumer experience, and real-life location to paint a vivid picture of renting with Airbnb.

Ways this animated cartoon ad can inspire you:

  • Animated text in intro and outro to emphasize branding.
  • Combine phone interface with character scenes.
  • Using multiple voices to show common concerns and how your product solves problems.

8. ChildLine

The child-centered counseling phone service based in the UK, ChildLine, uses Claymation to create a strange cartoon ad bringing awareness to mental health. Creating video ads for difficult subjects is challenging, and ChildLine does a solid job tackling this sobering issue.

Most of our other choices have been upbeat, fast-paced, and cheerful. That approach doesn’t work for many products or services, especially when discussing children who feel uncomfortable in their skin. ChildLine successfully lays out the problem without getting too graphic and their communication solution.

Ways this video can inspire you:

  • Utilize different types/styles of animation to fit your brand.
  • Choose a familiar song that captures the mood.
  • Inspire the viewer through cartoon imagery, even if the subject matter is dark.

9. Heinz Beanz

While beans are widely consumed, they aren’t exactly the most exciting product. However, Heinz does a great job of using a cartoon style ad to announce their new product, Heinz Beanz. The video is character-driven, concentrating on the man’s love for beans and sharing his passion with family rather than the actual product.

Using characters creates a relationship with the viewer; the only downside to this approach is you need more time. The Heinz Beanz cartoon is the longest of our selection running over 3 minutes.

Ways this  video can inspire you:

  • Use characters to develop an emotional relationship with your audience.
  • Don’t be afraid to break through the typical 30s, 60s, 90s video format. (There is a time and place for the longer format, a character-driven story is one of the instances where it works)
  • Demonstrate how products make us feel rather than their features, advantages, uses, etc.

10. Coca-Cola

The marketing specialists at Coca-Cola don’t have to introduce a new product to market very often. While they do have unique variations of Coke released all the time, the primary goal of their marketing is brand recognition. They want you to think of Coke rather than a competitor when shopping or asked what you would like to drink.

Coke’s advertisement uses a combination of real-life actors and cartoons to tell a story that boosts brand recognition.

Ways this cartoon style video can inspire you:

  • Use storytelling through animation to add value to a well-known product.
  • Combine animation and live-action.
  • Use cartoon style ads for brand recognition.

Final Words

Cartoon ads offer versatility and exceed the possibilities of live-action videos. Incorporating animation in your marketing strategy can dramatically increase your online traffic and branding. We hope that you’ve enjoyed our breakdown of 10 cartoon style ads and can draw inspiration from videos that have successful results. If you want to use animation in your marketing but don’t know where to start, book a free consultation with our video strategist today!

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