With Chinese New Year round the corner, billions worldwide are ushering in the year of the goat with much excitement and zest. This is not without bouts of nostalgia as we reminiscence on lost memories, childhood and the importance of familial ties. These sentiments are visually captured with the help of marketing giants from Apple to McDonald’s and also some regionally produced ones by OWL and Mudah.my
Be warned though, the following advertisements are bound to bring a tear to your eye.
#1 CCTV English’s “Celebrating over 4,000 years of tradition”
CCTV English effectively encapsulates age-old Chinese culture, values and emotion through a 90-sec clip that highlights the values of inheritance, respect and enlightenment. “For a taste of happiness” is an ingenious ode to the commonly associated Chinese imagery: chopsticks. Journeying through various Chinese cities from Shanghai to Jiamusi, viewers are reminded of the long-standing and unshaken Chinese values alongside a cultural object (chopsticks) and traditional past time (eating). Sharing a common identity of being Chinese and retaining their heritage and love for food, it is a touching tale of how chopsticks bind communities from all walks of life.
#2 Mudah.my’s “Letting Go of the past Can Bring an Unexpected Surprise”
Auctioning old, unused items from his grandmother during their annual spring cleaning tradition, Lee Meng unwittingly unites her with an old friend. What is most enjoyable about Mudah.my’s ad is the cross-cultural element that may be missing from the others listed above. Living within a multi-ethnic society, the company remains mindful of this aspect of Malaysian life. The message that runs across the ad is loud and clear: Chinese New Year is not only a reunion with your family but also your loved ones (regardless of race or religion) and those you truly cherish.
#3 Facebook’s CNY 2015
Facebook’s newly released video for Chinese New Year documents families from Singapore to Taiwan enjoying their annual reunion dinner at home. The clip highlights the sense of connectedness that can be fostered and maintained despite physical distance or age differences. In short, the Facebook and Messenger App keep loved ones close to heart.
#4 Apple’s “Old Record – Start Something New” Commercial
Fancy gifting an iPad for your Ah Ma this Chinese New Year? In Apple’s new ad, a young girl converts a vintage record sung by her grandmother into an iPad compatible format as a holiday gift. Without any spoken dialogue, the latest Apple advert does not only resonate with local audiences but is relatable across linguistic and geographical boundaries. Prior to this, Apple released a similar video for Christmas, both capitalizing on emotional imagery for its foray and expansion into the Chinese market. The heartwarming ad, custom-made for the Chinese audience this upcoming Lunar New Year, leaves us feeling slightly teary-eyed.
Just a bit of trivia, the song in is titled Always Smile, a song by 1940s singer Zhou Xuan. Zhou recorded over 200 songs in her career and starred in more than 40 films.
#5 OWL’s “The Bomb Defuser”
You can place that box of Kleenex away as this Chinese New Year, OWL unveils an amusing 6 minute short featuring a young man and his family enjoying their
steamboat lunch. The ad might strike a chord with plenty as we all seem to know THAT infuriating relative who appears every New Year. From the onset, Ah Boy is thoroughly displeased by news of his second aunt’s arrival and hilarity ensues. Will Ah Boy manage to suppress his anger? Watch the video to find out.
#6 McDonalds’s “You Are My CNY” Commercial
“You are my Chinese New Year” is an incredibly catchy tagline to accompany McDonald’s latest ad. The ad underlines the importance of spending cherished moments with loved ones no matter how brief.
Christine Xu, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of McDonald’s China explains, “The ‘You are my CNY’ concept touches on a very important societal topic i.e. success or progress in China may separate from the ones we love. The true value of CNY is the opportunity to reconnect with those people.”