BMW Makes a Genuine Holiday Ad With Real People

BMW The Road Home

As Co. Create’s Joe Berkowitz wrote: “There’s a difference between straight-up schmaltz and the subtle tugging of heartstrings, and the latest ad from BMW stays on the better side of that line”. One of the reasons why this new ad isn’t an unoriginal and cheesy ‘heartwarmer’, is the fact that the seemingly cell-phone shot footage was filmed by 50 staffers from Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners, New York, the agency behind the ad, on their cameras and cell phones while going home for Thanksgiving. The surprisingly genuine shots automatically gave a tone of warmth and humanity to the ad, later combined with an original score and tagline “There’s no road like the road home” and a simple “Happy Holidays” at the end. This way, BMW has shown us that not only does its product take us where we truly want to be (home is where the heart is, right?), but also that a brand can show emotion and a bit of holiday spirit without distributing an utterly fake and artificial ad.

BMW The Road Home

  • rwordplay

    “There’s a difference between straight-up schmaltz and the subtle tugging of heartstrings.” I’m disagree with Mr.
    Berkowitz, if for no other reason than a man who distinguishes between “straight-up schmaltz” and diluted schmaltz simply isn’t being honest. What the man has done here is damn this work with faint praise.

    Good analysis avoids unnecessary modifiers. What’s more, a “subtle tugging of heartstrings,” is not the opposite of schmaltz, it’s just a more nuanced version of it. What’s worth noting here is 1) the “camera” work, which makes effective use of simulacra—looks more real than real, and 2) a purely manipulative score. Which is to say, to my mind, BMW has approved an “utterly insincere or fake message” spot.

    PS It should be noted that all ads, by definition, are fake and, or, artificial. The difference between good ads and bad ones are that good ones produce sincere emotions.