Rob Hunter of Hunterlodge picks his Desert Island Ads

unnamed-1Rob Hunter is founder and managing director of Hunterlodge Advertising based in Hertfordshire. He started the agency in 1987 with a results-focussed approach aimed at making effective advertising accessible to all clients. The agency is one of 16 in the UK awarded IPA Platinum status for continuous professional development.


My ten favourite ads/campaigns of all time? Surprisingly, I didn’t even have to search to list them. Whilst they are all different, each one of them is provocative, creative and a great example of why I love working within the advertising industry. It also doesn’t hurt that many of them have won some sort of effectiveness award.


Coke – I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony

An early and effective example of how a song can become synonymous with a brand, even 45 years after it was first aired. It should have ended all world conflict!


Guinness – the surfer

This doesn’t even need an explanation on why it is in my top ten. It elicits the response all advertisers can only dream of – giving me goose bumps and making my hair stand on end. The production techniques were first class. Simply brilliant.


Carlsberg – probably the best lager in the world

I can’t think of another campaign that actually created a new way of talking that is still used today. A clever ploy to overcome advertising regulations, the concept was so good it could be rolled out across a multitude of themes. Probably the best campaign ever made.



Castlemaine XXXX – Looks like we’ve overdone it with the sherry

I genuinely enjoyed seeing this every time it came on the telly. It didn’t matter how many times I saw it. I still loved it. It hit the spot with the target audience, was clever and memorable. Sales rocketed and it embedded the Aussie beer in our everyday culture.


Cadbury – Gorilla

I can’t remember a new ad generating so much buzz and awareness – the payback on this ad was insane and a perfect example of how successful viral marketing can be. And all with hardly a chocolate bar in sight.


Black Magic

A simple idea executed well – it brought a bit of luxury to the masses and turned around the fortunes of a company on the edge of bankruptcy.


Nescafé – soap opera

Nescafe managed to keep the soap going for years and years with the relationship deepening on every new variation of the ad. That is what makes this campaign so great. It’s so simple, very clever and really dialled into the whole soap scene. It got the whole nation talking and was even voted the most romantic of all time.


Compare the Market – Meerkats

Why is this so good? Simples. The use of furry animals, famous people and a substantial budget that forced rival sites to boost their advertising spend and struck a chord in the heart of the public.


John Lewis – Christmas ads

The John Lewis Christmas ads are always brilliant – these ads had to make the list. They have become a British institution and nothing signifies the start of Christmas more than the launch of the new John Lewis ad.




One of the first brands to push diversity boundaries and build a brand out of controversy. Whether successful or not, it raised the profile of social issues and got people debating.

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