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Commercial Break: Trust Condoms, One Love

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William Arruda, called the personal branding guru by Entrepreneur magazine, is the founder of Reach Personal Branding. He shares his personal-branding wisdom through his public speaking and his bestselling book, Career Distinction: Stand Out by Building Your Brand.

But he is also passionate about TV commercials. In fact, William has an enormous collection of advertisements dating back to the 1970s. Sadly, he says, most of his TV ads are on VHS. But thanks to the Internet and YouTube, he nonetheless has access to most of the commercials he has collected over the decades.

Here, William shares some of his favorite ads. And true to his style, he offers up a lesson for how the ad relates to your personal brand—after all, it's all about personal branding... at least, in his world.

Client: Trust Condoms
Campaign: One Love

Year: 2004


We love this commercial because...

"It takes a product that can be a little uncomfortable for some people to talk about and cleverly gets the message across," says Arruda. Though the ad focuses on a major health issue, it does so in a way that would stimulate conversation, not stifle it: "If you listen to the words of boy-band Blue's song 'One Love' that plays in the background, you get the message of survival—even though there is not one word spoken by the main characters in the ad," he says. And it's well-produced and fun.

This ad and YOUR personal brand: Sometimes it’s important to be provocative. You need to be willing to get your message across—ensuring people will listen even if they don’t agree. Strong brands are not all things to all people; they are willing to take a stand and say what they believe.

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  • by Penelope Herbert Sun May 31, 2009 via web

    Clever! Clever! Not only the intrinsic message but the fact that the only audio was music - no traffic, no clapping, no cheers - simple simple, delightful. Many Directors wouldn't take this approach - and the two 'stars' are beautiful looking people, too. I did like the umbrella seemingly trying to 'erect' at the end - tee hee. Thanks for sharing from an archive that most of us will never get to see.

  • by Samantha Dan Tue Sep 1, 2009 via web

    That being a Kenyan ad and me being Kenya, it made me proud to watch. they ran quite a few great similar ads during that campaign. They were unforgettable, sadly today their ads are not as imaginative.

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