10 Emotional Thanksgiving Advertisements That Will Get You Every Time - Unlimited Graphic Design Service


10 Emotional Thanksgiving Advertisements That Will Get You Every Time

November 28, 2019, by

two people cooking

Thanksgiving is a time for family, friends, and being together to celebrate all that’s good in life. 

No wonder, many companies take advantage of the season to launch moving Thanksgiving advertisements that tug at customers’ heartstrings.

Here are ten of the most heartwarming Thanksgiving advertisements over the past few years that touch the heart. Moreover, these commercials bring their brand closer to their target market while at it.


1. Publix (2014)

publix marketing

This advertisement by Publix expounds on rekindling family connections every year during Thanksgiving. The employee-owned, American supermarket chain headquartered in Lakeland, Florida, knows that the holiday is all about family. Thus, their ad campaign centered on people preparing and gathering together for the holiday meal. 

The video showed family members greeting one another at the door, as well as busy preparations in the kitchen. Likewise, the commercial goes to describe the holiday as “the day that may not always be flawless, but it’s always perfect.” Lastly, the video ended with a simple “Happy Thanksgiving” title card in green font color. It has a simple Fall foliage accent over a white background.


2. GTA (2017)

gta marketing

This commercial for the leading telecommunications company in Guam has one central message for clients. Thanksgiving is all about sharing the moment. 

The commercial starts with people on their phones, discussing Holiday arrangements. As they come together in a house to celebrate, the ad shows various videos of the family talking, eating, and generally enjoying their meal together. 

The ad ends in a meaningful shot. It shows the logo of the company over a video of smartphones left untouched on a table. Despite being a telecommunications company, GTA chose to emphasize the significance of personal interaction for their holiday commercial, making their message all the more powerful. Check out this article on 10 Thanksgiving Marketing Campaign Ideas To Be Thankful For


3. McCormick (2016)

mccormick marketing

The message of McCormick’s ad centered on the anticipation not just for the holiday meal. In addition, the ad also focuses on the stories, compliments, and all the catching up on Thanksgiving day. As the American food company is known for its spices, seasoning mixes, condiments, and other flavoring products, items like Turkey, gravy, and pies take center stage in the ad.

The video ends with the logo of McCormick and their tagline, “pure tastes better” in white font. Furthermore, the plainness and simplicity of the font stood up against a colorful background. It’s an image of warm-colored spices arranged in neat lines.


4. Meijer 2015

meijer marketing

The 2015 commercial of the American grocery, pharmacy, electronics, home, and apparel supercenter uses a combination of compelling videos and heart-warming verses. The first voice over summarizes and sets the whole feel of the commercial. “This is the day that all roads lead back home.”

The ad concludes with a title card that shows the company’s logo over a white background. The straightforwardness of this graphic is deliberate enough not to distract or take away from the ad’s emotional message. Check out this article about The Best New Thanksgiving Design Trends of 2019


5. P.C. Richard & Son (2013)

pc richard and son marketing

Unlike most Thanksgiving advertisements that center on the preparations for the most-awaited turkey dinner, this commercial took a different turn. The ad had a clear message. They want customers to enjoy their special gathering without having to hurry to get in line for Black Friday deals.

“We believe Thanksgiving should be spent at home, so you won’t have to wait in line and fight over limited-quantity items,” the ad says. The commercial ends with the company’s name logo in blue and its tagline in red font. “Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours,” is written in a simple dark gray font over a white background. 


6. Walmart (2017)

walmart marketing

Walmart’s 2017 ad manages to be fun while still focusing on the importance of family bonding over Thanksgiving. The commercial starts with a woman taking ingredients out of a Walmart shopping bag. The next sequence showed a montage of food preparation. Some of the snippets are vegetables chopped, timer set, and turkey browning in the oven. The food videos were very well-shot, and the whole scene is eye candy.

The ad ends with a line that says “Bring your flavor” in white font over a video of a perfectly roasted Turkey set on the table. Lastly, it goes into a wide shot of the family enjoying the meal with a logo overlay.


7. HBO / Cinemax 2018

hbo cinemax marketing

HBO and Cinemax launched a free preview promotion last year for Thanksgiving. The commercial that they launched showed wide shots of various living rooms, painted and decorated differently. All living rooms had the same three elements. A couch, a television showing movies and TV series, and people enjoying what’s playing on TV.

The ad ends with text graphics over a video. In addition, it showed the logos of both channels, the promo title, and the duration of the preview in metallic gray. 


8. Fleet Farm (2018)

fleet farm marketing

The retail chain focuses on the sincerity of the holiday season. The chain announced that they’ll be closed for Thanksgiving to allow their team members to celebrate with their family. This message paints the company as a business that cares for its employees’ work-life balance.

The commercial featured text graphics using various descriptions to pertain to the holiday season. Meanwhile, the last frame shows the logo of the company against an image of a closed Fleet Farm store with an announcement that they’ll be open on Black Friday.


9. Giant Food (2018)

giant food marketing

Giant Food managed to emphasize the importance of togetherness during the holidays while mentioning some of their products. 

The commercial mentioned the chain’s antibiotic-free turkey, chicken wing trays, Proscuitto-wrapped shrimps, and spiral ham glazed with honey. Overall, it’s a subtle way to remind people about the items they can get from the store while championing family bonding.

The video’s final title card was its violet brand color with white text that says, “the little things are giant.”


10. Target 2017

target marketing

Target’s 2017 Thanksgiving commercial targetted kids but expressed the spirit of togetherness nonetheless. 

The ad showed two kids having holiday dinner with iconic toys. Barbie, Ken, Superman, a LEGO Batman, and Pinkie Pie starred in this commercial. Each one took a turn in saying what they’re thankful for. The punchline of the ad was Superman saying he’s grateful for everyone in the table – even for Batman. 

The final title card of the commercial showed a silver garland wreath. It resembles Target’s iconic logo hanging on a red door. Below it is a white text that says, “together’s the joy.”

About the author

Carla is a freelance writer and television producer. She is also the founder of Inspired Space, a blog and eCommerce shop for freelancers and passion pursuers.

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