World’s Best Ads of All Time: top 100 TV and video commercials revealed

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We asked for your favorite ads of all time and you nominated in your droves. Then we got the world’s leading creative directors to rank them. Now we can reveal the top 100 TV and video ads of all time. Introducing the World’s Best Ads.

Honda’s classic ’Cog’ commercial has been crowned the best TV ad of all time after coming top of The Drum’s World Best Ads poll of readers and leading creative directors.

The painstakingly produced 2003 ad, created by Wieden+Kennedy, edged out AMV BBDO’s beloved Guinness ’Surfer’ spot and the Apple epic ’1984’, conceived by Chiat\Day and directed by Ridley Scott, to take the accolade.

Released as part of The Drum’s Creativity Month, which coincides with the first in-person Cannes Lions since 2019, the World’s Best Ads list counts down 100 of the most legendary TV, cinema and video ads ever made. It was made possible by an exhaustive search that involved our readers around the world and some of the finest creative minds working in the industry today.

First, we invited our readers to tell us about the ads they loved the most and they responded in their droves, with hundreds of nominations flooding in. Then we put their submissions to an expert jury comprised of the leading creative directors from the World Creative Rankings and The Drum’s Judges’ Club.

They judged each ad on a scale of greatness, with their collected scores determining the final top 100 ranking.

On the special World’s Best Ads website, you can see the full ranking, watch every ad in our top 100 and jump back and forth to read the stories behind what has made them so successful.

Cameron Clarke, editor of The Drum, said: “World’s Best Ads is an inspiring time capsule of the best advertising ever made from the early, golden age of TV advertising to the viral smashes of the present day.

“No list of the 100 best ads of all time will be without debate. We know you’ll have your own thoughts on which ads are too high, which are too low, and which are missing altogether and we’d encourage you to join the conversation using #worldsbestads. But whatever you think of the order, we’re sure you’ll enjoy, as we have, looking back on some of the finest work this great industry has produced.

“Congratulations to the team behind Honda ’Cog’, which both our readers and expert jury agreed is one of the most mesmerizing ads we’ve ever seen. Against some incredibly stiff competition, it is a very worthy winner.“

This article was first published on The Drum


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