The 10 best viral video ads of 2013

While things have been going viral for the last few years, this was a year that saw several highly creative efforts from brands and their agencies in creating viral video ads.

We saw everything, including beautiful animation, humor, horror movie stunts and raw emotion in this year’s video ads. Here are ten of the best (in no particular order)

1) Volvo’s Epic Split with Jean-Claude Van Damme

The action movie star made a big return to the spotlight by starring in one of the year’s most widely shared videos, a stunt that involved him performing a split in the middle of two Volvo trucks driving parallel to each other. The ad was a simply, extremely effective way to demonstrate the precision of the Volvo trucks. Plus it was fun to see an aging Van Damme show that he still had it. (Not to mention the countless parodies it inspired)

2) Chipotle’s animated film about a dystopian future

This short film by Chipotle which was called “the most beautiful, haunting infomercial you’ll ever see” focuses on a world where all food is genetically manufactured, and one scarecrow rebels to serve only the fresh, organic stuff.

3) Pou Pourri’s hilarious ad for a product that masks the smell of poo

An ad filled with potty humor with a brilliant turn by a young actress who many were calling the “new Old Spice Guy”

4) Google reunites old friends across the India Pakistan border

Sappy, emotional and thoroughly shareable, this ad for how Google’s products brought together two long lost friends had everyone tearing up.

5) Coca-Cola takes on the highs and lows of early parenthood

An ad that will make you laugh and tear up at the same time, especially if you’re a parent.

6) Pantene takes on the double standards for men and women at work

It might be selling shampoo, but you’d never know it from the powerful anti-sexism message in  this ad from Pantene Phillipines, which received major props from Sheryl Sandberg and will now be played in the US as well.

7) A terrifying prank to promote the movie Carrie

The film may have been a dud at the box office, but at least the marketing was highly entertaining. This prank/stunt subjected terrified New Yorkers to a girl who suddenly looked like she possessed telekinetic powers.

8) HelloFlo tackles feminie hygiene head on

This tampon ad was refreshingly honest with the way it approached the subject, not to mention hilarious.

9) Pepsi puts a pro basketball player in disguise

It’s pure entertainment seeing NBA star Kyrie Irving disguised as “Uncle Drew,” an old man who takes on a bunch of kids in a pickup game, only to prank them with his incredible basketball skills.

10) John Lewis tugs on the heartstrings for Christmas

The UK department store created a beautiful, animated tale of a bear who always sleeps through Christmas, and his rabbit best friend who prepares a special surprise for him.

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