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Branded video review with RedPill: The best ads of Euro 2016

Every fortnight, REDPILL reviews three new branded videos and assesses the reasons behind their social performance. REDPILL’s rating system scores videos across five categories (awarding a maximum of 20 per cent for each category): originality; on brand; creativity; craft; and shareability. The sum of all five scores produces a rating out of 100 per cent.

This week is our UEFA Euro 2016 special. We’ve selected the top three football-themed branded videos - in our humble opinion. Take a break from the heavy stuff in the news this week and enjoy some amazing content.

Nike - Nike Football Presents: The Switch ft. Cristiano Ronaldo, Harry Kane, Anthony Martial & More

Rating: 100 per cent

As usual, Nike smashes it when it comes to football ads. While not quite up to the level as Alejandro Iñárritu’s Write the Future from 2010, The Switch still goes for broke with a powerful, high concept story and the megastar of this year’s tournament. The video plays like one of the sports fantasy movies of a 90s childhood - what would you do if you woke up in Ronaldo’s body? Some of us might wreak havoc, others might take the money and run, but in Nike’s world, Just Do It means one thing: excel in athletics. In this universe, hard work always means success, both for the biggest footballer in the world and a kid from a council estate. The hook, execution and message of “The Switch” is flawless. This is what more brands should be delivering - content that places the audience first. It doesn’t have to be expensive, it just has to be good.

Volvo - Volvo V90 - Made by Sweden - ”Prologue” feat. Zlatan Ibrahimović

Rating: 95 per cent

Volvo meanwhile has booked the bad boy of football, Zlatan Ibrahimović, to stir up a bit of Swedish pride. If The Switch is pop, Prologue is noir. Expertly made and directed, with a score by Oscar-winner Hans Zimmer, famous for scoring films such as Gladiator, Inception and Interstellar, Volvo’s films feels more like a cinematic blockbuster than an advert for their new V90 car.

Volvo use an eloquent voiceover from Zlatan to neatly align themselves with his journey and, in doing so, celebrate the ability to think differently. Prologue continues Volvo’s winning streak that started with Van Damme’s epic splits. We say bravo.

Paddy Power - Paddy Power presents Scotland's Euro 2016 anthem

Rating: 80 per cent

From the undeniable king of branded mischief comes a flashback to when we once had a football anthem to drunkenly chant. It comes in the form of a Scottish rendition of Fat Les's Vindaloo England song. Predictable, but as always, the Irish bookmakers pulled it off. Littered with amusing lines like “Do you think we’re gonna cry, coz, we did nae qualify?”, you can nae help but laugh.

Of course, there’s a stroke of rebellious genius in the mix – Paddy Power are inviting those in the Outer Hebrides (and nearby mainland areas) to bet against England to lose. “Scotland’s gon-na bet on youuuuz to looooze. SCOTLAND.” #ViveLaBantz indeed Paddy Power.

While it’s not in the same league, division or European tournament as Prologue or The Switch, it’s reassuring to know a brand can still make an inroad into the Euros without dumping a Volvo truckload worth of money into UEFA’s pocket.

The author, Matthew Davies, is a director at REDPILL, a specialist branded video agency who deliver a fully integrated approach to social video production and distribution for brands around the globe.