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New IKEA campaign finds

wedish furniture giant IKEA doesn’t just make good-quality, affordable products. It’s constantly innovating in its marketing too, from teaming up with Swedish House Mafia to spoofing its high-end rivals. And now comes another slice of fun that will go down well with pet lovers.

The latest IKEA campaign comes from boutique creative agency INGO Hamburg, who recently garnered acclaim for their Proudly Second Best ads, which saw IKEA products taking the backseat in celebration of the special bond between parents and children.

Now it’s the turn of our furry friends. A new series of commercials created for the United Arab Emirates, entitled Don’t Worry, You Can Afford It, puts pets and the havoc they create squarely in the spotlight.

Accidents and affordability

In these new ads, we see a variety of IKEA products, including planters, mugs, cushions, and vases, being knocked over by adorable cats and dogs.

The ads reassure pet owners that, given these items’ affordability, replacing them after a pet-related mishap is no big deal.

It’s a smart move to target this market, given the boom in pet ownership worldwide: the UAE alone is estimated to have around 1.5 million pet ‘parents’. The ads cleverly link the domestic chaos that sometimes entails with the cheapness of IKEA products – all wrapped up in a blanket of cuteness.

More broadly, these ads find an imaginative way to solve an age-old problem in marketing: how to talk about your low prices without promoting the idea that your products are low-quality. By staging these scenes in attractive-looking surroundings, the ads position IKEA firmly as a middle-class, quality brand that just happens to offer excellent value.

Challenging conventions

“For the past few years, we have noticed a growth of pets in households in the region, and we wanted to introduce this topic through this campaign for the first time,” explains Carla Klumpenaar, GM marketing, communication and interior design for IKEA in the UAE, Qatar, Egypt and Oman. “Over the next few days, we will also launch a collection of household products for pets.”

The campaign will be rolled out across various media throughout the region, including out-of-home, print editions, a range of screen formats, and the brand’s own social channels.

“We are excited about this campaign, which, on one hand, brings the unskippable cuteness of pets, and on the other hand, challenges marketing conventions by showing the products damaged,” says Tobias Ahrens, global chief creative officer at INGO. “An honest story that refreshes the usual IKEA price communication style.”

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