Why Does American Advertising Creativity Fall Behind the Rest of the World?

fuelingAs with many things, America was once the leader in advertising creativity. It seems, now, that we await the annual Super Bowl to see Madison Ave. unveil it’s “best.” What about the rest of the year? Those commercials are, sadly, considered “bathroom breaks” for most TV viewers. So why do we search YouTube for great Japanese and European commercials? Because they are creative, weird, entertaining, and a dream we all have of getting one of these past the marketing and account executive levels.

Just this week, a French commercial went viral for its questionable “too-soon” taste. I doubt the French take much offense to it, so, if it works in France, who’s to say it isn’t effective advertising?

Meanwhile, the rest of the world goes balls-to-the-walls when it comes to commercials. For some nations, like Japan, it just can’t get weird enough. It’s not, however, just being weird that makes viewers stay seated when their favorite show breaks and the commercials start to roll. It’s entertainment and, in many cases, more entertainment than the shows they are watching.

A recent commercial from Japan to honor Shark Week…

Japan’s favorite mascot gives children a lesson in… I have no idea!

Mmmmm, yikes? Not that the following is a commercial, but this clip from an American film is more like how kids feel about toilet training (note the voice of Mel Brooks)…

Weird may be fun, but other countries have a different view of what’s weird…

Everybody loves dancing babies!

This commercial takes a while, but it’s worth watching… once!

Wait for it… wait…

And so, creativity is never bound to one country or region, state or town. It’s all about the freedom to create. I wonder what that’s like?

Top image ©GL Stock Images


Speider Schneider

Speider Schneider is a former member of The Usual Gang of Idiots at MAD Magazine and has designed products for Disney/Pixar, Warner Bros., Harley-Davidson, ESPN, Mattel, DC and Marvel Comics, Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon among other notable companies. Speider is a former member of the board for the Graphic Artists Guild, co-chair of the GAG Professional Practices Committee and a former board member of the Society of Illustrators. Follow him on Twitter @speider

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