Think Easter, Think Chocolate, which Chocolate giant is lighting up our screens this Easter? 

Let’s face it: for many of us, Easter is the prime time to indulge in a little bit of chocolate. From bunnies wrapped in gold through to giant decadent eggs, each year the list of choices seems to be ever-growing. 

With chocolate on the brain, the Opinium team decided to put some of this year’s most prominent chocolate ads to the test using our advertising optimisation tool AdVantage. 

It’s a showdown between Cadbury, Hotel Chocolat and Lindt – who does the Easter bunny favour this year? 

Cadbury – a British favourite – is the unequivocal chocolate champion 

Going back through 200 years of Cadbury history, this adorable ad sees a young girl enter a shop to buy her mum a Cadbury chocolate bar and paying in a handful of buttons and toys. The heartwarming ad scores really highly on enjoyment, inspiring feelings of happiness, love and comfort, according to our respondents. The ad also does a good job in keeping viewers’ attention, feels relevant and at the same time different from other ads in the category. 

Unusually for Cadbury, brand linkage is only average – the purple wrapping only shown intermittently to draw attention to the brand, the ad could be doing a better job to signal to viewers which brand it’s really for. 

That being said, the creative does well to invoke humour, and enjoys a good social virality score, with many saying they would share the ad in a post or send it to someone via private message on social media. 

Hotel Chocolat does well in inspiring consideration – but fades in comparison to Cadbury’s emotive storyline 

Featuring Hotel Chocolat’s signature chocolates, this product-focussed ad takes us into the delicious world of HC’s beautiful selections – but the striking visuals fail to really make an impression compared to Cadbury. While the execution does relatively well on enjoyment, it struggles to engage the audience or really make them understand what the ad is trying to say. 

However it does inspire feelings of surprise and inspiration, and its musical element performs quite well. Short and sweet, the ad has an element of social virality, with respondents saying they would share it in a post on social media or send it via private message. 

The creatives  achilles heel appears to be its poor understanding score – as it lacks a clear message – and without it, it doesn’t seem as relevant to viewers. 

The Lindt Easter bunny doesn’t spark the consideration it tries to inspire 

Lindt ended up at the bottom of the chocolate leaderboard this time – despite all of its sparkle. The ad, while linked to the brand quite well due to the signature Lindt bunny, is only average on our AdVantage scores: it doesn’t seem as relevant despite the timing near Easter, and it doesn’t raise consideration much. Part of the problem is its poor difference score, meaning it appears to be quite similar to other ads in the category, therefore not keeping viewers’ attention as well as it might do otherwise. 

It’s therefore unsurprising that the ad isn’t likely to go particularly viral: of the three ads, it has the poorest score in terms of likelihood to share the post on social media or send it via private message. 

The grandfather / grandson storyline does inspire feelings of belonging and comfort, however; and the musical element is pleasant enough to carry the ad. It just doesn’t quite land the emotional tug at the heartstrings the way that Cadbury does. 

Looking at the three ads overall, it’s clear that even when selling something as delicious as chocolate, an emotive message that hooks in the viewer and makes it relevant for them is important. Because let’s be honest, chocolate is inherently emotional: a bit of chocolate can make any day better – and even soothe an achy heart. 

Written by Ande Gilmartin, Associate Director at Opinium.