Would you watch an advert in which a teenager stands at a sink and washes dishes for more than four minutes, or spend more than five minutes watching a video of people arm wrestling in a bar?
Furniture store Ikea has created such dull spots in a series called “Irresistible Pointless TrueView Ads,” which are a dig at the sometimes annoying commercials that appear on YouTube that viewers can’t wait to skip.
As such, the actors in each ad prompt viewers to press the skip button, with the sullen teenager asking: “Don’t you have anything better to do than watch me washing dishes?” as he painstakingly scrubs each piece of crockery.
Aside from the teenage dishwasher and the arm wrestlers, there is an eight-minute spot featuring a couple making out while a wildlife program plays on TV in the background. “You can skip this ad now. This is kind of private,” the woman says. Eventually, her partner falls asleep on the couch — for more than two minutes.
They are part of Ikea’s “Where Life Happens” campaign by agency Akestam Holst and the furniture giant claims that viewers watched each advertisement for an average of three minutes.
“Where Life Happens” aims to show the retailer taking inspiration from people’s everyday lives, as a voiceover says in an explanatory video: “Where most brands pray that the audience stays longer, Ikea does the exact opposite.”
Ikea has 380 stores in 48 countries, including 43 in the U.S. Its sales increased 7 percent in fiscal year 2016 to nearly $38 billion. Ikea was launched in Sweden in 1943, but the first U.S. store opened in 1985, in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania.