Author: Florencia Corazza
13 min reading
If you want a memorable video that will stay in your viewers’ minds for a long time and attract tons of customers to your business, then I can’t recommend cartoon style ads enough!
The cartoon art style is not only fun and engaging, but it’s also great for delivering important information to your customer base in an effective and creative way… If you do it right, that is!
But how can you know if you’re on the right track when crafting an animated piece of your own? Well, I’m here to answer that! I’ve compiled and analyzed 20 of the best cartoon ads out there, so you can see for yourself what makes them so effective in the first place.
Now, let’s cut the chit-chat and get started!
Table of Contents
Before diving into the examples, I want to give you a rundown of why the cartoon art style can be greatly beneficial for your business:
Now, without further ado, let’s jump straight into the top 20 animated ads to inspire your next piece!
Let me apologize in advance for starting out with this example, because I know the jingle will be stuck on your head for a while!
This ad has everything needed to become a hit: adorable characters, catchy music, and a memorable slogan —five simple ingredients for simply healthier tortillas. People who come across this ad know immediately what makes Tortilla Land’s tortillas better than the rest and where they can find them, in just one minute! Pretty effective, right?
I absolutely adore this beautiful cartoon style ad! It reminds me of the calm and relaxing atmosphere of Ghibli movies (unsurprisingly, the score was made by a Ghibli composer).
This example is so powerful because of this very characteristic: the peaceful vibes it transmits make us feel cozy inside while watching it. It’s no secret that evoking positive emotions in your viewers is an infallible recipe to make a successful ad. But while achieving such an atmosphere would be hard with live-action pieces, animation makes it possible with no effort!
Representing Slack’s value proposition would be no easy feat without the help of the cartoon art style. That pile of unread emails made me feel overwhelmed, and they’re not even real!
A cartoon ad can make your message more relatable, even when you’re trying to convey emotions or situations that aren’t easily transmitted with just words. Animation is an excellent choice if your business is related to the digital world or a similar “intangible” industry since you can easily show your audience, rather than tell, the benefits of working with your business.
One of the greatest strengths behind the cartoon style is its educational possibilities. Explaining a process to someone is infinitely easier when you have visual support and can demonstrate anything through animation.
In this example, learning how to use the new McDonald’s app wouldn’t be as easy if we didn’t have the cartoon characters and objects as a visual aid. And, in all honesty, learning to navigate the app is already a fairly simple process, so imagine the possibilities with a much more complex industry, like in healthcare ads! If you want to save your customer service team some time, consider a similar cartoon video to troubleshoot common issues with your products or services.
If you have any doubts about the effectiveness of using cartoons for your ads, just check out this example: no voiceover, no live action, and still we get a crystal-clear proposition.
You might think the text blurbs are what’s actually important in this ad, but think about this: if the video was just plain text, it’d be extremely boring and no one would watch past the first 5 seconds. The fun animations are what keep us engaged until the end, helping deliver the message perfectly!
Demonstrating everything you can do with Amex’s mPOS would require quite a lot of people and different sets and props if you wanted to create a live-action piece. However, there’s no such hassle when opting for cartoons!
This video is really effective at delivering the company’s message for two reasons. First, it speaks directly to its target audience, addressing their specific needs. Secondly, it also shows all the cool features the mPOS has, going over them thoroughly but without overwhelming the viewer.
The cartoon style and its educational value are key here to clearly showcase the different solutions Amex provides.
I apologize to sensitive folks reading this article, but sometimes we need to get real!
Let’s face it, even the most taboo and uncomfortable topics need to be tackled in advertising. And it can be extremely hard to do so while being tactful and serious, especially when it comes to… bodily functions or other sensitive topics.
Luckily, appropriately conveying what you need to say becomes ten times easier when you can use cartoon style animation to represent your topic!
Sometimes, the nature of your work requires you to share large amounts of complex information with your audience. Well, the good news is that the whiteboard cartoon art style is perfect for such cases!
This particular style gets you hooked right from the start, making the piece come to life right before your eyes and helping viewers follow along the thorough explanation easily. In your case, using an animated whiteboard can help establish your brand as a field authority, since you’ll be sharing your industry knowledge with your audience like an educator teaching something to a student.
At this point, who hasn’t seen one of Red Bull’s iconic ads? Well, that’s no accident. The company has been consistently making its commercials in the cartoon art style and keeping with a single theme, which has allowed the ads to become truly iconic. Moreover, the well-known slogan Red Bull gives you wings can be clearly represented through animation. I think this is a great example of the power that cartoon style videos can have!
This ad’s script is really simple and goes straight to the point, which is why the plain 2D cartoon art style used here complements it perfectly.
This goes to show that there’s no need for a huge video production budget or anything of the sort; using a few animated characters is more than enough to convey your idea!
If you’re new to the video advertising world, beginning with a similar piece can help you start learning what works and what doesn’t for your brand.
If you’re looking for a way to share your values and missions with your audience, why not do so with a charming cartoon style ad?
In the case of Acer, opting for animation allowed the brand to emphasize its eco-friendly message and reinforce its branding by using green for the majority of the color accents in the video —a really smart move!
Since software solutions can be quite complex and difficult to understand, making an effective ad for the IT industry can feel like an almost impossible mission if you don’t have the visual support of animation.
When it comes to tackling such abstract concepts and ideas, even the most seasoned professional can get lost trying to digest a lot of information condensed into a short video. That’s why using cartoons to go along with the voiceover can help convey your message more effectively and ensure viewers clearly understand it!
If you want to make an ad that stays in your viewer’s minds long after they’ve finished watching your piece, then you have to include a relatable situation that they can identify with.
The beginning of this cartoon style ad presents the target audience with a scenario they can easily relate to in order to hook the viewer right in. Additionally, Silver Arrow Band also summarizes all the perks of working with them so viewers know from the very beginning if the business is a good fit for their needs.
As I said before, the cartoon art style is a perfect medium for sensitive topics. This is particularly true when your ad is aimed at children, and you need something they’ll want to engage with.
Representing family problems in a respectful way while also catching the attention of the target audience is a challenge, to say the least. But using animation is the perfect tool to represent scenarios that children in vulnerable situations can identify with, without triggering negative emotions or harmful memories.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen myself represented so perfectly in an ad in my whole life, and I’ve never tried Heinz ketchup before!
When your target audience is composed of young people struggling with the menial issues of everyday adult life, you simply can’t not use humor to get to them. The cartoon style allows Heinz to use hyperbole to represent those tiny issues that seem huge when you’re overwhelmed, like the pile of Tupperware without lids, in a hilarious and simply fantastic manner. All while posing the product as the hero that comes to save the day!
You can always count on Headspace to make the coziest cartoon ads ever. The soothing voiceover alone is making me feel sleepy!
Since Headspace’s whole mission is based around meditation and stress-relieving tactics, it only makes sense to use heartwarming and pleasant animations to deliver their message. Additionally, their brand design elements are all made up of 2D cartoons, so choosing anything other than this style would feel very off and awkward to their established audience.
This video we made uses some funny animations to address viewers directly and tell them all the benefits of Pretiis’ services.
Humor is a great tool to make your ads stand out from the rest and pique your audience’s interest. We used the cartoon style to make typical issues one comes across when househunting seem like scenes from a scary movie, ghosts included! This resulted in a piece that is as amusing as it is effective, highlighting Pretiis’ value proposition in a unique way.
This is another great example of a song that’ll stay with you for quite some time 😅. However, the video boasts over 8 million views on YouTube! Evidently, the combination of the cartoon art style and catchy music is undefeated.
The animated characters shown here are all featured frequently during the app’s language lessons. This smart branding move increased the video’s engagement, with some people even making rankings of the characters in the comments! Doing something similar and creating cartoon characters for your brand can make your customers connect with it on a deeper level and increase engagement effortlessly.
For the 2023 edition of its Security Tech Forum, Samsung opted for a cartoon style ad that gives viewers all the basic information they need in just half a minute.
While we definitely know this company didn’t go with this option because of money issues, it’s nonetheless a great example of what amazing results you can achieve with cartoon ads, even on a tight budget! Just 30 seconds of a few simple animations are all you need to get an awesome piece that promotes your next webinar, conference, or event.
Last but certainly not least, we have this really sweet cartoon style piece made by Airbnb. In addition to being a great example of animated ads, it also perfectly showcases the power of storytelling.
Telling stories in your videos is a foolproof strategy to catch the attention of your viewers and keep them hooked until the very end. Since they’re already an essential part of our lives, compelling stories can easily build a connection with your audience. The viewers can see themselves reflected in at least one of the scenarios featured in this video and know that Airbnb is thankful for all their work!
As you’ve seen in the examples above, cartoon style ads aren’t only fun little pieces of animation, but also powerful tools that can make your business stay relevant and stand out from the competition.
Animation’s only limit is your imagination, as virtually anything you can think of can be brought to life through different cartoon styles! On top of that, any kind of video can be animated and still deliver the goals you’re after, from a product demo to an explainer video or even a testimonial.
Now that you’ve gotten some inspiration with this list of the best 20 animated ads out there, it’s time to start thinking about what your next cartoon piece will be like! I’m sure it’ll be awesome 😉.
A skilled writer, translator, and co-editor for our web and blog content. As a self-defined "wordsmith," she’s talented in adapting the latest marketing news into all kinds of digital formats. If she’s not watching the latest Sci-Fi show on Netflix, then can find her tending to her
perfectly reasonable number of plants.
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