Ever notice that you’ve had a song stuck in your head only to realise it’s come from a television advert? Or do you find yourself saying lines or phrases from adverts in your everyday conversation? We’ve put together a list of catchy TV adverts both old and new to see how many you recognise. If some of these get stuck in your head for the rest of the day, we’re very sorry!
Yes Sir! I can boogie – Cadbury
This advert from Cadburys shows an office employee sitting in an office on the phone being put on hold. Rather than the expected reaction of being annoyed about the wait, the hold music plays “Yes Sir! I Can Boogie” by Baccara, resulting in the employee, who of course has just opened a bar of Cadbury’s chocolate, lip-syncing and dancing to the tune. In this particular advert, other employees join in, resulting in an office chair synchronised routine.
Cadbury is well known for creating iconic adverts, from a drumming gorilla to erratic eyebrow dancing. With this particular advert, they chose an advert song that perhaps hadn’t been used in popular media for a while, resulting in a resurgence of interest in the catchy beat. In 2014-2015 when the advert ran, the song entered at no.8 in The Drum’s Shazam chart.
This advert ticks all the boxes for a memorable effective ad, including the use of humour, subtle references to Cadbury’s purple brand colours, and a catchy song that will stay in your head all day.
Phones 4 U, for Less, at Phones 4U – Phones 4U
In this Phones 4U advert, Flight of the Conchords duo Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement travel the UK in a campervan singing about the many offers that Phones 4U has. It’s this singing which has pulled this ad into our catchiest adverts list.
Phones 4U, unfortunately, went into administration in 2014. During its time it produced a high number of popular ads, including “Scary Mary” and “’Even you, Dean Gaffney”.
Someone’s knocking at the door – Postcode Lottery
The Postcode Lottery adverts are both loved and hated by the UK population but are definitely well known. In these adverts, celebrities including Jeff Brazier and Danyl Johnson travel across the UK to deliver giant novelty cheques to those who have entered and won the postcode lottery.
In the background, a song entitled “Let Em in” by Paul McCartney and Wings is always featured. This song has almost become a catchphrase for the Postcode Lottery, with a close association with the lyrics “someone’s knocking at the door, somebody’s ringing the bell”.
Coffee Shop Advert – GoCompare!
This is an advert that the UK population loves to hate. In this first Go Compare advert, two men are discussing insurance in a coffee shop. All of a sudden an opera singer called Gio Compario, played by professional singer Wynne Evans, appears singing all about why they should use GoCompare for their car insurance. With the repetitiveness and easy-to-follow lyrics of this jingle, it’s no wonder that we had to include it in the catchiest advert of all time.
Wynne Evans’ character has appeared on several GoCompare ads over the years, including one in 2019 featuring a car crash that faced a high number of complaints, and one more recently introducing Gio Compario’s mother to the ad campaigns.
I feel like Chicken tonight – Chicken Tonight
The “I feel like Chicken tonight” advert is possibly more well-known in the US, but also featured on UK screens in the 90s. This advert is simple but effective, whereby the lyrics “I feel like chicken tonight” are accompanied by chicken-like dance moves. Even now, decades later, you’re likely to come across someone who does this when someone mentions having chicken. You may also come across an episode of the Simpsons where the Simpsons family parodies the dance and song featured in the adverts.
Despite the success of the advert, the brand Chicken Tonight is possibly not as well known in the UK as alternatives such as Home Pride or Dolmio, nevertheless, it still exists and is available to buy from major supermarkets.
There’s a Magical Place – Toys R us
The toys R us adverts feature a giraffe named Geoffrey, the face and mascot of Toys R us, who helps at the store to get all of the toys ready. In this particular ad, Geoffrey and what seem to be very young employees work through the night to stock the shelves ready for the next working day. The song in the background is what has put this advert into our catchiest TV ad list.
Now over 30 years old, here Linda, the singer behind the jingle, speaks to LBC about her experience.
Cat Band – Crusha
The Crusha advert, with the potential of giving nightmares, features a number of cats in a band almost threatening the general public to use its product properly. “Add milk, or we’ll crusha”. In the background, we watch as numerous cows get squashed by large falling bottles of crusha. This advert aired between 2013 and 2014.
With the current public perception of the dairy industry, we’re not sure if this particular advert would now be allowed. However, at the time this proved a popular advert with adults and children alike due to its eccentric approach. So popular in fact, the advert was eventually banned after a member of the public tried to recreate the advert with real cats!
“If you like a lot of chocolate on your biscuit join our club” – Club Biscuits
Despite this advertising campaign for Club Biscuits starting in the 80s, people still remember and recall the famous line from this advert “If you like a lot of chocolate on your biscuit join our club”.
The lyrics have also been featured elsewhere such as in this clip from The Royle Family.
Did somebody say Just Eat – Just Eat
In one of the more recent advertisements on our list, the phrase “did somebody say just eat?” is becoming a normal thing to say when debating whether or not to have a takeaway. This particular campaign was created by McCann and features Snoop Dogg rapping all about his favourite takeaways and where he likes to order them from.
More recently Katy Perry has also been featured in an advertisement, also singing about what she likes to order and why. We’re staying tuned for more celebrity cameos in the future.
Are there any catchy TV adverts you feel are missing from our list? Let us know in the comments!