Purr When You’re Winning: Robbie Tune A Hit For Felix
It's Great to Be a Cat
Felix launched their “It’s Great To Be A Cat” campaign in 2022, celebrating the lives of Britain’s feline friends with ads starring the brand’s much-loved black and white cat mascot (also called Felix, naturally!). But the campaign hit a new gear last year, when Felix teamed up with Robbie Williams to record a new song, “It’s Great To Be A Cat”, which also soundtracks this latest 20-second ad.
Since John Lewis pioneered the “get a real pop star to record a new track for your ad” tactic in the 2010s, we’ve seen a few other brands try it. While John Lewis’ tunes often topped the charts, the point isn’t really to have a hit, but to extend the brand’s reach into different media and platforms – and to use a celebrity in an entertaining and appropriate way. If you’ve got Robbie Williams signed up to be your brand ambassador, he could appear in your ads – but how much better to have him sing your song?
Williams doesn’t make an in-person appearance in this ad for Felix Tasty Shreds but of course his voice is there, and he gets shared billing with Felix the Cat in the opening shot. The song is in the big band style Williams used on his Swing When You’re Winning LP, a style he’s obviously happy with because of the scope it offers for swaggering, joyful performances. One of the bonuses of having a bespoke song for your ad is that you can match the action precisely to the lyrics – here we see the animated Felix look into a mirror and climb on a cat toy while Williams soundtracks the cat’s activities exactly.
Felix’ ad scores a strong 4.4-Stars on our Test Your Ad platform, a whole Star Rating above the pet food category average (3.3-Stars). It also lands a strong rating for Brand Fluency and an exceptional short-term Spike score. What makes it work so well?
The ad manages to hit two of the most valuable targets for effective advertising. It has a strong, melodic tune backing it up – we know that this is more appealing and effective than highly rhythmic soundtracks. Normally a familiar tune works best, but Felix get around that by having a familiar and highly recognisable singer in a style he’s well known for.
Second, the ad stars a Fluent Device – a recurring character whose adventures drive the story: in this case Felix The Cat. Felix has been part of the brand’s advertising for 35 years – that’s an astonishingly valuable reservoir of familiarity and goodwill for a brand to tap into, and goes some way to explaining this ad’s strong emotional appeal and high recognition. It’s great to be a cat – it’s even better to have one as your brand mascot.