42 Adverts That Break The 4th Wall

Let’s face it, most adverts are desperately boring. They cling to the perceived rules of advertising and don’t stray from the accepted formats. We’ve all seen a normal billboard advert millions of times, why not add some spice?

But every so often a maverick arrives, blazing a trail of originality and defiance. We celebrate those renegades and have compiled a list of the greatest adverts that breaks the fourth wall in all different ways, shapes and forms.

DHL’s Online Tracking Van

Lynx Axe – “Dating” Schedule

Fitness Company’s Subway Barbell

BBC World – “See Both Sides of the Story”

Toro – Cordless Trimmers

The Zimbabwean – “Thanks To Mugabe This Money Is Wallpaper”

YKM Skipping Rope Bags

Tyskie Beer Door Handles

Tibits Vegetarian Food

Guitar Store Amp

What Goes Around, Comes Around

Seat Belts Save

PS2 Bus-Station Bubble Wrap

Toronto Plastic Surgery

Pilot Watch Bus Strap

The Sopranos’ Taxi

Oldtimer – All You Can Eat

Mondo Pasta

McDonalds 200m… 197m…

McDonalds Pouring Coffee

Lay’s – “Our Potatoes Are Grown Close Than You May Think”

Kill Bill 2 Samurai Blood Splatter

Kill Bill Pool of Blood

Free Air Guitar

Folgers’ Steaming Coffee

FedEx Twice The Size of UPS

Duracell Powered Escalator

Denver Water Bench

Frontline Flea Ridden Dog

Bionade’s 3D Bottle

YMCA Basketball Billboard

Penline Super Strength Tape

Mammoth – Play Big

The Day After Tomorrow

CNN News – The Full Picture

Anando Milk

Funeral Parlour – “Come a little closer”

iPod + iTunes – Album Covers

Adidas – Oliver Kahn 2006 World Cup

Formula – Strong Teeth

KitKat Half Eaten Bench

Silberman’s Fitness Center

Written by Luke Matthews

Luke Matthews owns and runs, where you can find info about marketing degree programs and there is also advice about marketing schools.


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  1. Explaining what it’s not:  If people tend to dismiss or misunderstand your product, it’s critical that you develop concise, easy-to-understand messaging that breaks those preconceptions. “This is NOT a video game” immediately breaks a preconception, and it piques interest for parents. By positioning the product as a training device, and not a toy or game, parents are more apt to give it serious consideration.

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