Ikea, the renowned furniture retailer, has recently launched a captivating ad campaign that defies conventional marketing strategies. 

Titled “Proudly Second Best,” this series of three short video clips skillfully captures the essence of parenthood while subtly highlighting the company’s core values. 

The campaign’s brilliance lies not in showcasing Ikea’s products being used, but rather in emphasising the profound bond between parents and their children.

Celebrating the Parent-Child Relationship

In each video ad, viewers are immersed in heartwarming scenes depicting a parent and their child. Remarkably, Ikea’s most popular products remain unoccupied, deliberately overlooked in favour of the parent’s presence. 

In one instance, an empty crib symbolises the tender embrace of a napping baby on their mother’s chest. Another portrays an empty highchair, as a father lovingly holds his child while sharing a meal. 

Lastly, an empty stool signifies a mother lifting her child up to the sink. These poignant visuals effectively communicate the campaign’s underlying message ‘Ikea understands that nothing can replace the irreplaceable bond between parent and child’.

A Brave Departure from Traditional Advertising

In an era dominated by brands vying for the title of being the best, Ikea’s ad campaign stands out as an act of bravery. Instead of boasting about its products’ superiority or affordability, the company focuses on the intrinsic value of the parent-child relationship

By intentionally showcasing their products as secondary to this profound connection, Ikea sets itself apart from its competitors. It dares to declare that its high-quality furniture can never supersede the love, care, and presence of a parent.

Understanding and Catering to Their Customers

Ikea’s campaign demonstrates a profound understanding of its customer base, many of whom are parents seeking furniture, such as cribs, highchairs, and stools. 

Acknowledging the importance of these products in a child’s early years, Ikea affirms that their purpose extends beyond mere functionality. 

While they are designed to enhance the family’s well-being, the company recognises that parents themselves are the true pillars of a child’s world.

IKEA Marketing

A Lesson for Brands

The success of Ikea’s ‘Proudly second best’ campaign lies not only in its emotional depth but also in its universal message. 

The company’s willingness to acknowledge that its products will never surpass the significance of a parent’s role sets a powerful example for other brands. 

In an era fixated on promoting superiority, Ikea reminds us all that a brand’s values and its commitment to fostering genuine connections should take precedence over self-promotion, which is an example that many other companies would do well to follow suit in.


Ikea’s latest ad campaign brilliantly captures the essence of parenthood, highlighting the company’s dedication to celebrating the parent-child relationship. 

By boldly showcasing their products as secondary to this profound connection, Ikea sends a powerful message to brands worldwide. 

In a world of endless marketing noise, it is the values, empathy, and authenticity that truly resonate with customers, reminding us that no highchair or crib can ever replace the love and presence of a parent.