2015: The Year of Sass

2015 is over and the analytics are rolling in. Content is king and engagement is the gold standard but another trend emerged more organically. Quirky, sarcastic, eye-rolling, ironic, sassy ‘tudes emerged in the ads bombarding us all year. And guess what? We loved it and showed it with our wallets. Let’s have a look at some of these sarcastic stunts:


In 2015’s most ridiculous Facebook stunt, Groupon turned a perfectly innocent banana holder into a 19,000 comment-long post filled with sexual innuendos. They responded to every customers’ sarcastic comment with equal mockery, each response slightly weirder than the last. The product sold out before the post even went viral.

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Kate Spade:

In a 4 part series, the superstar and sass-master Anna Kendrick played a locked-out holiday shopper, terrible meditation teacher, girlfriend of a gnome and pushy carpooler. All the while subtly promoting  Kate Spade clothes, jewelry and decorations without any sales pitch. It’s odd, eye catching, real, interactive and doesn’t play like an ad; the ideal formula for a millennial ad.

Taco Bell:

What a year for this company. Bold business strategies (hello breakfast burritos) coupled with a grass-roots, custom content focused marketing strategy resulted in a killer year. Their biggest accomplishment? Breaking down Apple and finally getting their blessed taco emoji. Taco Bell acted like a 4 year old, asking her parents for a cookie before dinner. Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it? OKAY FINE TAKE YOUR DARN EMOJI! This win launched an entire emoji campaign to wrap up 2015 for the company.

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Of all the companies to be sassy, you wouldn’t think Wrangler would be jumping on this bandwagon. Through a series of Wrangler vs Wrongler photo comparisons, the brand showed they’re more than a Brett Favre endorsement. With a punch of sass and touch of cynicism, Wrangler shows it’s the natural, free-wheeling one. Dress your dog up in costumes? Stick with the other brands, would ya?

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Kraft Stove Top Stuffing

Meet the Artisanal Hipster Pilgrim; because just a pilgrim would be too predictable. In a series of snarky ads run around the holiday, Stove Top says, “Stop stereotyping stuffing!” Speaking directly to the just-out-of-college-and-moms-not-buying-my-food-anymore consumer, this brilliantly timed campaign might make stuffing less of a seasonal product with the right reminder advertising.

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Ah, fake accounts. Filled with spam and the bane of the social media director’s existence (your likes went down because FB wiped out fake accounts on a random Tuesday, not because we’re doing a bad job ok?!). But this “Ask ForHelp” account did something a little different for the social media team at Target. After announcing gender neutral labels, Ask ForHelp responded to outraged customers complaining on the Target page with sassy yet hilarious responses. Target did not condone nor endorse the account, but it probably couldn’t have gone any better for them.

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Here’s to whatever 2016 brings, Marketers! See you on the other side.


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