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Insightful IKEA

A key factor of the IKEA company’s global success is that their stores insightfully offer modern, co-ordinated lifestyle solutions for living in the real world, rather than a mere showroom of products.

This customer centric marketing strategy focuses on product development according to contemporary lifestyle wants and needs.

They have in effect been instrumental in providing the impetus for what some sociologists label as a ‘Modern IKEA Society’. This is a descriptor for a predominantly urban and very mobile consumer segment of home improvement seekers.

They consist of diverse ages, tastes, family needs and individual wants. All are like-mindedly seeking inspiring solutions for affordable, flexible and stylish lifestyle home environments.

1. IKEA, Start Something New

Advertising Agency: SCPF, Barcelona, Spain

Directed by Pep Bosch the commercial is an insightful story about how a small change in our daily routine can become a life enhancing experience. A fold-up chair becomes a metaphor for the empowering ability of change to broaden our horizons.

2. IKEA, My Son

Advertising Agency: Buzzman, Paris

Directed by Didier Barcelo, this charming commercial insightfully portrays how parents see their children. It is a human truth that will bring an acknowledging smile to viewers of all ages.

3. IKEA, The Joy Of Storage

Advertising Agency: Mother, London

Directed by Dougal Wilson, this beautifully produced commercial is part of IKEA’s ‘The Wonderful Everyday Day’ campaign series of commercials.

It is a surreal depiction of the joy to be had with adequate, fit-for-purpose storage. I can easily identify with that great feeling of knowing instantly where, what I’m looking for, is safely ‘nesting’.

4. IKEA, The Terrace

Advertising Agency: Auge Headquarter, Milan, Italy

Directed by Erik Van Wyk, this hugely appealing, sensitively observed commercial is more about ambiance and a welcoming home environment than it is about pushing product.

The most prominent article featured is a lamp and once again IKEA is making the point that it takes only one item to make an impressionable difference.

5. IKEA, Cooking Is Caring

Advertising Agency: Buzzman, Paris

Directed by Katia Lewkowicz, this amusing story deals insightfully with a familiar, modern day real life scenario of sharing responsibilities and the rivalry between separated and caring parents this can create.

6. IKEA, Every Other Week

Agency: Åkestam Holst, Stockholm

This keenly observed story by director Marin Werner, is a quiet, understated commercial that for viewers speaks volumes about everyday life and the realities facing divorced parents.

The Agency’s inspirational insight is that many children in Sweden with separated parents live in two homes and for the parents involved, this can be a very difficult, guilt ridden situation to manage in providing happy and welcoming home environments in two locations for their children.

Once again IKEA bravely confronts a real life scenario that very few brands would have the courage to attempt and offers some helpful suggestions. The commercial is part of IKEA’s ‘Where Life Happens’ campaign.

7. IKEA, Step Siblings

Advertising Agency: Hjaltelin Stahl, Copenhagen, Denmark

Directed by Rune Milton, this is another sensitively observed and quietly understated IKEA commercial of emotive viewing and insight.

8. IKEA, The Lamp

Advertising Agency: Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Colorado, USA

Directed by Spike Jonze, the story about a discarded lamp is one of the most iconic commercials of all time and was voted one of the “Top Ten Television Advertisements of the Decade” by Boards Magazine in 2009.

The commercial also received many other industry accolades, including a Grand Clio and a Cannes Film Grand Prix.

The unexpected, tongue-in-cheek message at the end of the commercial cleverly helps to get over the guilt one often feels of discarding still perfectly usable old things.

9. IKEA, The Lamp, Child’s Play

Advertising Agency: Rethink Communications, Canada

Sixteen years after ‘The Lamp’ commercial was released, a sequel has been made been made recently for IKEA Canada with a new message from Swedish actor Jonas Fornander.

His message in the original commercial was; “Many of you feel bad for this lamp. This is because you’re crazy. This lamp has no feelings. And the new one is much better.”

Brilliantly directed by Mark Zibert to be as faithful in tone and mood to the original as possible, Fernandez has a more environmentally friendly message in this sequel; “Many of you feel happy for this lamp. That’s not crazy. Reusing things is much better.”

The Eagerly Awaited Annual Catalogue

IKEA’s commercials are primarily about image, ambience, comforting spaces and understanding the lifestyle of the people who occupy them.

The IKEA catalogue released in August each year is focused on product range and the flexible solutions they offer. It is the company’s main advertising medium, and accounts for 70% of their annual marketing budget.

203 million copies of the 2018 IKEA catalogue were printed making it one of world’s most distributed publications. The 300 pages take 18 months to plan, design and produce and the catalogue is also made available online.

This offline retail and online strategy combination has successfully seen the catalogue reach an online, cult-like following in many countries.

10. IKEA, Recipes for Delicious Kitchens

Advertising Agency: BBH (Bartle Bogle Hegarty) Asia, Singapore.

Directed by Javier Laurenco, the commercial is a visual delight and an entertaining demonstration of some of the many options on offer in their catalogue that are waiting to be explored at IKEA stores.