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Why Dogs Are So Popular In Marketing – Part 2

It’s back.

Almost a year ago we wrote an article on why dogs are so effective when it comes to marketing campaigns. We shared some of our favourite ads and looked at why “man’s best friend” produces such excellent results for their respective brands.

Following the publication of the original article, there was controversy amongst the Zero Above team when it came to the featured pooches. The absence of megastars such as Churchill and Dogs Trust sparked all out anarchy within the ZA studio. If you need a reminder as to the dogs that were included, you can take a look at the original article by clicking here!

But in honour of #NationalDogDay, we thought we’d settle the score and revisit the topic with a fresh set of pups that have taken the advertising world by storm. So, without further ado, here’s our brand new list, and we must warn you, it’s an emotional one.

Dogs Trust – Special Someone

And here it is! Dogs Trust has produced absolutely brilliant adverts for years. The organisation have always managed to provoke some sort of emotion in the viewer. Whether it’s laughter, sadness, happiness or excitement, Dogs Trust have a clear message to deliver and they do it expertly well every single time. 

However, there was one advert that the company produced that simply had to be included in our list this time around and here it is: 

The #SpecialSomeone campaign from Dogs Trust demonstrated how the wonderful dogs that they have rescued and nurtured are still looking for that ‘special someone’ to re-home them and provide the lives that they deserve. 

The ‘woollyified’ human toy in the advert provides a companion of sorts for the dog that is looking for a new home, however, the woolly toy cannot provide the same level of love, affection and care that these loyal animals long for. 

When a human male appears with the identical green cardigan, round specs and friendly grin to provide a new home for the dog, it perfectly encapsulates the joy and happiness that is not only experienced by the dog who will now be part of a family, but the sheer adulation experienced by the human adopting a new best friend and becoming that ‘special someone’.

A truly brilliant campaign that embodies Dogs Trusts mission to give all dogs a happy and healthy life.

Budweiser – Best Buds

As controversial as the topic is, beer manufacturers have been responsible for some of the most engaging and entertaining television ads over the last decade. However, this ad from Budweiser that premiered during Super Bowl 48 contained a more subtle and deeper message than the typical ‘this beer tastes better than the others’. 

With the help of a globally adored labrador puppy sneaking under a fence to regularly visit his friend (who happens to be a horse as fate would have it). Budweiser were able to promote their products without a single beverage in sight: 

Instead of focusing on the product, this advert focuses on the human element behind it. The importance of having friendships and relationships with others despite exterior circumstances that try to keep them apart. 

An excellent message that does not conform to the status quo of advertising. Of course, the inclusion of the adorable puppy is going to demand attention and engagement with the ad, once Budweiser had this, they delivered a fantastic message. Combine this with the brilliantly choice ‘Let Her Go’ soundtrack from Train and you have a marketing masterpiece on your hands. 

Guide Dogs – By My Side

What. An. Advert. 

This 40-second ad from The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association does break the rule slightly in terms of the absence of dogs until the end of the clip, however, the Zero Above team thought that this campaign was so excellent that we had to include it in our list. Here it is: 

The ad gives a perfect scenario as to how blindness impacts lives. A young girl commentating for her blind father whilst she plays football, trying to explain her actions as she does them. 

You could be forgiven for thinking that this ad is quite sad. The little girl makes a few mistakes before missing her shot at goal and you can’t help but feel that this is because of the explaining she is doing whilst playing. 

However, the point of the advert is not the limitations that come with sight loss, but the opportunities that having a guide dog ‘by your side’ can provide. 

The final scene encompasses this perfectly. despite the girl’s small mistakes whilst playing football, the happiness on her father’s face just because he was able to attend the event is priceless. Something that would not be possible without the aid of a guide dog who is shown walking alongside the daughter and her father at the end of the advert. This emphasises the importance of guide dogs for blind and partially sighted people across the UK and exactly how they can change lives in the most positive way. 

A truly brilliant example of powerful and emotive marketing. 

Churchill – ‘get the nod’ 

There was no avoiding him this time around. 

To complete our list we’re finishing with the infamous Churchill nodding dog. The animated bulldog has become a pillar of television advertising since he debuted on screen in 1996 to promote car insurance. 

The ‘Oh Yes’ catchphrase took the UK by storm in the early 2000’s when replica Churchill nodding-dogs could be seen on the dashboard or parcel shelf of every other car on the M25. It is widely believed that Churchill was the original ‘loveable insurance mascot’ that paved the way for successful campaigns like Compare the Meerkat. 

There is a whole catalogue of Churchill adverts that we could have picked from with guest cameos from Martin Clunes, Josh Widdicombe, Rob Brydon and more. However, we’ve decided to go with the original from 1996 that paved the way for over 2 decades of television success: 

The simplicity of the times. A clear message delivered with humour and wit by the nationally recognised, northern accent of Churchill the dog.
What more could you want?

Zero Above

There you have it, a new list of the most popular dogs in marketing. Hopefully this time around we’ve covered everything. If you think there’s a better example of pooches in marketing campaigns or you want to let us know what your favourite example is, then make sure you Tweet us or let us know on Facebook by clicking the links below. 


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Be sure to check out our original article by clicking here –