10 of our favourite Mother’s Day campaigns

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With mum’s special day around the corner, here’s a rundown of clever Mother’s Day campaigns that we found engaging and effective.

Brittany Daniel

Mother’s Day is for spoiling mum and these companies are cornering the market on those who are looking to spend. We broke down why the campaigns worked and what other brands can learn from them.

1. Procter & Gamble, ‘Mother’s Day Olympics’, 2012

American consumer giant Procter & Gamble produced a heartfelt Mother’s Day campaign with the tagline “the hardest job in the world is the best job in the world. Thank you Mom”. The campaign ran during the 2012 Summer Olympics and showed different mothers around the world raising their children into athletes. It demonstrated that P&G are “proud sponsors of Moms”.

Why it worked:

The campaign allowed P&G to emotionally connect with its audience without blatantly selling its feminine care brands. Instead, it portrayed itself as a supportive and empathetic company for mothers.

2. Samsung, ‘Texts From Mom’, 2015

This hilarious ad campaign from Samsung had unseen adults scrolling through typical texts from their mums. Standouts included blank texts, a meandering message about avocados and a few failed attempts at social media slang. The tagline was simple: “This Sunday, give her a call.”  

Why it worked:

Samsung successfully used humour to create an entertaining campaign that gave the audience that “I know the feeling” reaction. The Samsung name remained at the centre of the screen, so brand recognition was high, but Samsung didn’t push a product. Instead, the brand trusted its light-hearted approach would stay with viewers next time they needed to make a purchase.

3. Pandora, ‘My Strong Mother’, 2018

Last year, Pandora released a short and sweet advertisement that showed a mother changing a tyre before jumping back into the car with her daughter. The message was “my strong mother” and “celebrate who she is this Mother’s Day”. The campaign didn’t mince words and simply emphasised the power and strength of women.  

Why it worked:

Female empowerment is an important issue and this campaign spoke to those with strong female figures in their lives. It demonstrated that feminism is one of the jewellery brand’s core values. Many consumers will respect that and want to support the company.  

4. Brawny, ‘Once a Mother, Always a Giant’, 2017

This clever advertisement from Brawny paper towels took place through the eyes of a toddler. It showed kids making a mess and causing trouble before their mums raced in to save the day. The brand filmed the footage with real families to connect with its audience.

Why it worked:

By featuring real consumers, this campaign made itself ten times more relatable than it would have been with actors. It also showed plenty of scenarios where its product could be useful, demonstrating just how well Brawny understands its consumers and their daily struggles.

5. Stockland, ‘All Those Who Mum’, 2018

This campaign celebrated all mums across Australia – traditional mums, stepmums, single mums and more. The company showed that it supports diversity and understands there are many motherly figures that need to be recognised on Mother’s Day.

Why it worked:

Stockland showed that it’s a forward-thinking and inclusive company by acknowledging that not everyone is brought up in the same way. It’s a powerful message that would have resonated with most of the property group’s audience.   

6. Kraft, ‘Swear Like a Mother’, 2017

In Kraft’s tongue-in-check ‘Swear Like a Mother’ campaign, Melissa Mohr, the author of Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing, hilariously made an appearance as a swearing expert to remind parents that they don’t have to be perfect. It’s okay to have flaws. It’s okay to swear and feed your kids dinner from a box (like Kraft’s famous mac and cheese, for example)

Why it worked:

Most parents would agree that they aren’t always a perfect example for their children and Kraft played on that idea, establishing empathy with its target audience.  

7. JetBlue, ‘Fly Babies’, 2016

On Mother’s Day in 2016, JetBlue decided to give mothers peace of mind if they were travelling with their baby on a flight from John F. Kennedy International Airport to Long Beach. If their baby cried during the journey, then the airline would gift the surrounding passengers a discount on their next flight so they wouldn’t be inclined to complain.

Why it worked:

The airline reminded parents that it knows how stressful flying with babies can be and that its team are there to be supportive. This made the brand appear more approachable to its customers. It even capped off the stunt at the end of the journey by offering all of its passengers a free flight – ensuring it would make headlines.

8. Macy’s, ‘Mother’s Day at Macy’s’, 2018

This TV spot from fashion retailer Macy’s opened on a young girl who was anxious about her first day of school. Her mother assured her she would be back by giving her a purse. Years later, when this girl was leaving for college, she shopped on macys.com for a Mother’s Day gift and bought her mum a similar purse before telling her that she would always come back. The tagline was: “The perfect gift keeps us close”. 

Why it worked:

This campaign tugged at the heartstrings. It sent a lovely message about buying something special and sentimental for Mother’s Day while aligning the brand and showcasing the convenience of online shopping.

9. Body Shop, ‘Mother’s Day at the Palace’, 2015

‘Mother’s Day at the Palace’ was a spoof campaign by Mr President for the Body Shop in the UK. Using lookalike artist Alison Jackson and a retinue of actors, the campaign showed viewers what a typical Mother’s Day at Buckingham Palace might look like. In the very funny video, a fake Prince Charles and Camilla prepare breakfast for the Queen, while also bathing the corgis and struggling to wrap a “keep calm and reign on” notebook. The tagline was: “Treat your mum like a queen this Mother’s Day”.

Why it worked:

The Body Shop was smart to recruit Alison Jackson, who is known for her satirical photography of the rich and famous. The campaign allowed the brand to leverage off Jackson’s existing audience and make headlines. It also showed viewers that The Body Shop has a sense of humour about how its products can be used.

10. Nivea, ‘An Ode to Mommy’, 2017

In the week leading up to Mother’s Day, Nivea in the Netherlands produced 40,000 silk mousse bottles with special do-it-yourself packaging that children could decorate and then gift to their mothers. The message was “make your own personal Mother’s Day gift”.

Why it worked:

This was a very social media savvy campaign that generated plenty of free user-generated content for Nivea (mums were, naturally, pretty keen to share images of their homemade gifts on Instagram). The message behind the campaign (it’s the thought that counts, not the value) also aligned with Nivea’s brand values, depicting Nivea as a dependable and family-friendly brand.

Brittany Daniel, publishing executive

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