Five Big Findings from the 2017 FeelMore50

The 2017 FeelMore50 list launches today. We’ll be bringing regional and sector market research analysis of the list over the next few weeks, and throwing the spotlight on our new Creative Guidance Dashboard, but here’s a look at five of the biggest findings.

Just to remind you, the FeelMore50 is a list we publish every year of the best emotional advertising. We ran self-funded tests on over 700 ads which won awards, enjoyed viral success, or made the news over the course of last year. The fifty with the best results appear on the site. These ads may or may not include your own favourites – but they are all emotional smashes, proven to make people feel more. And the more people feel, the more people buy.

Here are five big things to take away.


For the first time in four years of global lists, the top FeelMore accolade goes to a British ad. “Next Stop: Good Mornings” takes place on ‘Blue Monday’, the alleged most miserable day of the year. Healthy snack brand Belvita wants to change that, and places a comedian on a commuter train to cheer the passengers up. The result is a refreshing commercial which takes on the Great British stereotype of public reserve – by the end of the journey, George the guard has the whole train chuckling. The jokes are cheesy, the biscuits are tasty, and the advert is a 5-Star winner. Congratulations to George, to Belvita, and to agency Gravity Road.


According to our brand monitoring platform – for the first time since we started running the FeelMore50, none of our Top 5 winners were shown on TV. The shift of advertising dollars towards digital content is now mirrored in a shift of emotional creativity. There are still great TV ads being made, and you’ll see a lot of them on the site. But every year agencies seem to get better and more confident at making dynamite emotional ads online. The only problem? Getting that great work in front of people. We test all our FeelMore50 ads on a broad sample, so we know everything here has mass appeal. But it doesn’t always have the mass audience it needs to capitalise on that. If you’ve been creative enough to make a 5-Star ad, you need to invest to make sure it reaches people.


A wise marketer once said, “There’s no such thing as a boring category, just boring marketing.” FeelMore50 proves that every year. On the new list we have a zipper manufacturer at #2 and elsewhere there are window cleaning fluids, stomach pills and even printer ink cartridges all taking the emotional route to growth. More generally, it’s a great year for new brands on the list. Only a third of our ads in this year’s FeelMore50 come from our Top 20 FeelMore50 brands. (More on exactly who those are in another post…)


As you might have noticed, it’s been a pretty eventful year or two away from the marketing world. It was always likely advertisers would respond to the changing political and cultural landscape, and this year we saw the first signs of that. Global brands don’t want to get involved with a wave of often ugly nationalism, but they have got the message that it’s OK to celebrate national quirks, even stereotypes, as long as it’s done with love. This is a very culturally diverse list, and it’s striking how well ads with very localised appeal have done. French romance, Canadian hospitality, and the Japanese love of kawaii (cute) creatures – all these figure in our Top 10. Expect more of this kind of playing to a home audience in 2018.


Finally, we’re delighted to say that for the first time, every ad on this year’s list achieved a 5-Star rating. In fact there were more than a dozen 5-Star ads that didn’t make the Top 50, and you’ll find many of them in the various regional and sector lists. We can’t say for sure that ads in general are getting more emotional, but the huge rise in 5-Star results since we began the list is evidence that more and more brands are realising that the best way to build a brand is by using emotion and appealing directly to our System 1 brains.

Enjoy the list, and if you want to know more about FeelMore50 or how emotional advertising leads to profitable growth, please do get in touch.


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