Hornbach’s deliciously different approach to DIY ads

A new spot from German DIY brand Hornbach sees a man tumbling down a hill in a metaphor for the pleasure-vs-pain experience of engaging in home improvement. It is the latest surreal piece of advertising from a brand who does things differently.

In the UK, DIY brands tend to take a ‘does what it says on the tin’ approach to advertising (in the case of Ronseal, literally). It’s usually all about the products – the amount of different paint colours on offer, how fast and efficient the range of power drills are etc etc. Nobody attempts to examine the feelings that DIY evoke, we’re far too pragmatic for that.

Over in Germany though, Hornbach (and its ad agency Heimat) has built a reputation for advertising that makes home improvement appear both epic and bizarre. Take the latest spot, below, where a naked man falls fast and violently down a hill, in the process diving through grass, wood, and even taking a nail to the buttcheek. Yet where others would flinch, he expresses a perverse joy, which is summed up by the spot’s endline: ‘You’re alive. Do you remember?’. Yep, we’re a long way from B&Q now, folks.

As mentioned, this is far from the first ad from Hornbach to take such a dramatic approach. Here are some other noteworthy spots from the brand’s oeuvre:

(This last one is nine minutes long! It ran in its full length in cinemas.)

What's the story?

The Storytelling issue, Oct/Nov 2017, is out now.
We invited writers to respond to our cover image
this month: read their stories inside.
PLUS: Tom Gauld, Oliver Jeffers, Giphy & S-Town

Buy the issue

The Annual 2018

The Creative Review Annual is one of the most
respected and trusted awards for the creative
industry. We celebrate the best creative work from
the past year, those who create it and commission it.

Enter now

DESIGNER

South East London

CREATIVE TEAM LEADER

Burnley, Lancashire (GB)