Pakistani Ads with a Strong Social Message

Repetitive, loud, and mind-numbingly dumb. These are just some words one can use to describe ads of recent times. There’s rarely any creativity, the same old themes and stereotypes, and if there’s any emotional aspect to them then it’s vastly overdone, and thus it becomes a bit cringe-worthy. Brands are either just jumping on bandwagons to follow the latest trend and seem relatable, or have just given up trying to present something new. But there are some masterpieces out there which make us want to believe that the advertising world isn’t completely void of creativity. Here are some of our favorite Pakistani ads with a social message:

1. QMobile – Naya Zamana, Nayi Batein

When I tell you I teared up when I watched this for the first time, I mean I genuinely did. In Pakistan, challenging stereotypes and actually seeing yourself succeed while you do so is quite rare, especially even when people close to you believe in those stereotypes. This TVC was wholesome beginning to end, hats off to QMobile’s team and their efforts to challenge Pakistani advertisements to do better.

2. Shan Foods

The infamous Shan Foods ad, maybe even the best Pakistani ad out there. Everyone fell in love with this TVC immediately. Living abroad to earn better for your family, and missing your family more than anything in the world and wanting to go back to them, is something that a lot of Pakistanis relate to. Honestly, we all love this sibling duo, making each other feel right at home while they’re so far away from home. This ad raised the bars of advertising in Pakistan!

3. Surf Excel

Captivating and adorable, this ad checks all the boxes. Dedicating your prayers for someone in need, selflessly and open heartedly, is something which everyone should learn, especially in our society. Surf Excel is one of the brands which always has the best advertisements, not just the basics about sakth dagh and cleaning, but ads which observe important themes such as this.

4. Peek Freans Cake Up

One of the most wholesome TVCs out there, this one steals our heart with this beautiful bond between a son and his mother. It’s also refreshing to see how a working mom deals with her son and is raising him to be an honest and good person, even if they don’t get to spend a lot of time together. This is something that all stereotypical Pakistani dramas should definitely learn from.

5. McDonald’s Mother’s Day Ad

An ad that says a lot, this ad, though an ode to mothers all around working hard to raise their kids as good people, also shows an employee who’s speaking in sign language, who has won the award for employee of the year. It made me think about how many of the jobs are inaccessible to people who are differently abled, which forces them to be financially dependent on other members of their family. Here’s to hoping this was as inspiring to others as it was for me!

What do you think about these ads? Are we missing any other Pakistani ads which should have made it to the list? Let us know in the comments!

Zahra Rehman

Social science undergrad and amateur artist who has a soft spot for cats, dogs and philosophy.

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