Macaulay Culkin is the latest Hollywood star to appear alongside meerkats Aleksandr and Sergei in a comparethemarket.com ad campaign.
So Aleksandr and Sergei, those furry little Russian meerkats, have a new Hollywood-superstar pal: none other than childhood actor Macaulay Culkin! (It’s definitely him; I’ve checked Google images and everything.) Macaulay stars alongside his new meerkat friends in comparethemarket.com’s latest Meerkat Movies instalment, conceived by the creatives over at VCCP and airing on your new LCD flat screen from July 8.
Incredibly, this isn’t the first time Aleksandr and Sergei have got to hang out with a Hollywood luminary. In the first Meerkat Movies spot, they went on a hot date with Academy Award-winner Nicole Kidman, who instantly fell for their cheeky charm—or was it the Meerkat Movies 2-for-1 cinema ticket offer?—either way, Mrs. Kidman not only accompanied the meerkats to the cinema, but also offered up her own rendition of the now famous meerkat catachphrase: “seemples.”
Macaulay’s ad (see below) is even sweeter, playing off his fame as a childhood actor—Macaulay is now 35 and, of course, the meerkats don’t recognise him at first—so after becoming convinced he’s their man, Aleksandr and Sergei take Macaulay on a family road trip that ends up at a children’s fairground. After riding the rollercoaster, jumping on the bouncy castle and getting his face painted, Macaulay winds up sat with the meerkats in the cinema—and, for the first time in the whole commercial, looks pleased with life (that awesome 2-for-1 cinema ticket offer has saved the day again!).
The second ad in the series featured Arnold Schwarzenegger rattling off some new one-liners—after all, he is the catchphrase king (apologies to Roy Walker and Mr. Chips). What these Meerkat Movies spots show, above all, is comparethemarket’s commitment to its celebrity endorsements, and it should come as no surprise that other price comparison websites have also featured celebrities in their advertising endeavours (think Sue Barker blowing up Go Compare’s irritating opera singer Gio Compario).
Through smart targeting and creative humour, these Meerkat Movies ads capture and hold the viewer’s attention, the celebrity serving to generate the buzz and amplify the promotional message.
And this is precisely why these ads have been so successful: a smart well executed creative strategy coupled with celebrity amplification. Seemples.
(Did I mention the 2-for-1 cinema ticket offer…?)