The Results Are In: Reflecting on Adland’s Election Season

The ballots have been cast, the votes have been counted and the American people have chosen their 45th president. Now, as we reflect on one of the most infamous election seasons in history, we’re taking a look back on the creative world’s role in the election.

From get out the vote efforts to impassioned partisan campaigns and idealistic pleas to take a stand with your vote, these are a few of the most memorable eleventh hour efforts.

Get Out the Vote Efforts

Century 21 & MullenLowe

An election year means America’s most famous home is officially seeking new residents. In a stunt meant to encourage the public to exercise its right to vote, Century 21 listed the White House online, just as it would a normal property listing. Unlike a normal property listing, of course, this home comes at cost of almost $400 million, is equipped with a steel bunker and a full security detail, and its residents have to be agreed upon by the American population.

A “Help Find the Next Tenant” button at the top of its page led viewers to a website that located their polling places.

Rock The Vote & Goodby, Silverstein & Partners

In its most recent effort to promote the younger vote, Rock the Vote turned to its roots: music. With Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Rock the Vote encouraged artists the Head and the Heart, Local Natives, Watsky and Adam Vida to release new songs that were only available near polling locations through a geo-targeted streaming site, ElectionFM.

Zipcar

Voting access is often a concern during elections, and Zipcar aimed to alleviate voters’ stress over how to get to the polls this year. The company made more than 7,000 cars of its fleet free for members on Election Day, allowing them to get to polls and cast their votes with ease.

Patagonia

Patagonia — in an effort that recalls REI’s wildly popular #OptOutside campaign last year — closed all its stores on Election Day to give its employees the time and opportunity to vote. The outdoor retailer also launched a #VoteOurPlanet campaign that endorsed voting not for a specific candidate, but for the platforms that will protect the planet and our natural resources.

Twitter

The week before the election, Twitter began rolling out an OOH campaign in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco that used its signature hashtag to call attention to the issues facing voters on Election Day. The striking images serve as a reminder of what —not who—they were voting for on the ballot.

Partisan Campaigns

Congressional Leadership Fund

Although younger voters tend to lean more progressive, the Conservative Super PAC Congressional Leadership Lund built a YouTube channel designed to sway millennial voters a little further right. “Real Talk with Ruth” features Republican spokeswoman Ruth Guerra, who previously served as the Republican National Committee’s Hispanic outreach coordinator, offering one-minute takes on Republican candidates and pertinent issues in congressional districts like MN-08, NV-03 and NY-19.

Wieden + Kennedy

Wieden + Kennedy understands that this election season was anything but a walk in the park, perhaps for Republicans more than anyone else (until Election Night, that is). In light of the party’s non-traditional candidate, the agency made a plea to discontented conservatives: become a 1-Day Democrat. The video urged Republicans not to sit this election out and instead vote for the Democratic nominee.

Unity Campaigns

Johnnie Walker & Anomaly 

Johnnie Walker spun its 16-year-old “Keep Walking” tagline in a spot released with Anomaly New York Monday. “Keep Walking America” features a spoken narration of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land,” which delivered a message of unity, progress and hope as the country faced Election Day. "We hope this work is not only an inspiration but a reminder that each and every one of us have an important role within society," Anomaly New York CEO Karina Wilsher said in an interview with Adweek. "Individual progress can lead to collective progress for the future of our country."

Now, as the election has come to a close and has revealed political divisions much deeper than expected, Johnnie Walker’s spot rings ever more true.