World’s best ads ever #86: Evian rolls into record books with skating babies
We asked our readers to vote for their favorite commercials of all time. Top creatives from the World Creative Rankings and The Drum’s Judges’ Club then ranked the ads. Now, we bring you the definitive 100 best TV and video ads of all time.
Back in 1935, Evian was recommended by doctors as the perfect water for babies due to its mineral rich composition. This formed the basis of the bottled brand’s ‘Live Young’ campaign, developed by BETC Paris, which knew its target audience was health conscious and intent on maintaining their youthfulness.
But in 2009, when the spot was launched, the global recession was affecting demand for the premium water and environmental concerns were driving down sales of bottled waters in general. Evian couldn’t lower its prices, however, because of high export costs.
Past advertising had focused on the water’s authenticity, but that sales pitch was no longer enough. Consumers of bottled water were mostly choosing cheaper varieties and even in France, Evian’s home market and still its strongest, 54% thought the brand was too expensive and 32% said they couldn’t think of a good reason to buy it.
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The brand needed an attention-grabbing way to reinforce its message. First it developed the CGI ‘Water Babies’, which, while a success, was much surpassed by its follow-up, ‘Roller Babies’. This spot, with the line ‘Let’s observe the effects of Evian on your body‘, showed the CGI babies break dance to the 80s hip-hop classic Rappers Delight.
Within three days of the spot’s launch in France and Belgium, television news was giving the brand unpaid media time. It was also becoming a viral phenomenon online, ultimately earning a place in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most-watched viral video ever with over 130m views.