Kiwi humour a surefire winner

EditorColmar Brunton's TVC Top10, TVCs, News Make a Comment

Just one debut this month – FCB’s Mercury Energy rebrand (at #10). No 1 is Kevin Denholm’s Sandpit – clearly the most popular NZ TVC in years.

“Interestingly,” says Colmar Brunton’s Katrin Schulze, “most of this month’s ads have been around for a while – while everybody is still loving the Sandpit’s play on Aussie rivalry – a classic that sticks in people’s minds.

“At No 2, Pak’n Save’s Stickman, while instantly recognisable, always has an element of surprise and originality because they are continually updated to remain relevant and topical. Both the consistency of format and expectation that there might be something new to laugh at have contributed to the longevity of the ads.

“Last but not least, Toyota’s possums is a classic and has pretty much been a regular in the top 3 ever since the ad started. The cheekiness and dry humour that animates the possums has managed to also get people talking about the brand. The irony of having possums talk about aspiring to be Toyota road-kill has created some strong product associations for Toyota.

“Localisms and wit are all the play in this month’s round of top 3 ads,” Schulze says. “

Top 10 Ads in August 2016

1. Mitre 10 Sandpit, DraftFCB, Exposure (dir Kevin Denholm)


2. Pak’n’Save Stickman, FCB, Waxeye (Paul James/Paul Carter)


3. Toyota The Real Road Experts, Saatchi & Saatchi, Flux (Laban Dickinson)


4. Vodafone Piggy Sue, FCB, Revolver (Steve Rogers)


5. Spark Spotify Magic Happens Every Day, Colenso BBDO/Proximty NZ, Thick as Thieves


6. Lotto Imagine, DDB, The Sweet Shop (Steve Ayson)


7. Tower Insurance Indestructables, Barnes Catmur & Friends, Finch (Alyssa McClellan)


8. Bargain Box launch campaign, Saatchi & Saatchi, Flying Fish (Paolo Rotondo)


9. AA Life Yellow Sheep, Rainger & Rolfe, Film Construction (Perry Bradley)


10. Mercury Energy rebrand, FCB, Finch (Jae Morrison)



1. Sandpit

  • Just love it 🙂
  • It’s so funny.
  • A classic but timeless
  • Love the humour in it.
  • It’s very clever and entertaining.
  • I love it!
  • Love comment about Aussies.

2. Stickman

  • I like these because they’re quite simple,
  • Usually a message portrayed in a funny way and the stickman voice is great.
  • Because they humorous and get the message across.
  • They are very witty.
  • I like the voice and the humour – not too ‘in your face’.
  • It’s funny and fast
  • Simple and clever.
  • They are always funny and topical.
  • They are so humorous and they come up with some really good ones.
  • The stickman concept is funny, original, instantly recognisable and memorable.

3. The Real Road Expert

  • Very funny. Makes me laugh.
  • Very clever and funny with good product association.
  • Love the dry humour.
  • Humorous and memorable and fun.
  • It is amusing.
  • A laugh a minute and a brand to remember.

The TV Top 10 is produced by Colmar Brunton ( exclusively for M+AD. Anybody may reproduce all or parts of it without authorisation – but we do ask for a M+AD/Colmar Brunton credit.

Colmar Brunton completed 1000 interviews online from Saturday 16 July to Wednesday 24 August for this report. Respondents were incentivised with Fly Buys points. The interviewees were all aged 18+; the margin of error is +/- 2.6%.

To see M+AD’s full back catalogue of Top 10 charts, go to the home page of this site, click on Top10 in the menu.