Hayneedle and VSA Partners Make an Emotional Connection to Furniture

By Patrick Coffee 

It’s hard out there for a company selling furniture online. Given that Amazon will soon rule us all, how can a business make its discounted stuff stand out from another retailer’s discounted stuff?

In pretty much every case, the answer is price. But a new campaign by VSA Partners of Chicago for client Hayneedle (which is a competitor of Wayfair and Joss and Main) takes things in a different direction by imbuing the act of buying and, more importantly, owning furniture with as much emotion as one can possibly fit into 90 seconds.

The idea is that a house isn’t a home without furnishings … and home is where the heart is, after all. Just look at all these cold, empty urban spaces.


Note the near-total lack of identifiable products.

“We know that ‘home’ is much more than just furniture and décor, and we wanted such values to be communicated in our marketing and communication efforts,” said Hayneedle VP of marketing Jeremy Podliska. “We want to refresh and stir up [our commoditized category] by going back to the basics of what ‘home’ can mean for families in today’s world.”

Agency partner and ECD Bob Winter added, “It takes a smart brand to resist the category conventions and not talk strictly about themselves—or about selling ottomans and loveseats at low prices—but instead tap into a sincerely personal and emotional message.”

The VSA team did that with the help of some thematic cinematography and Canadian singer-songwriter Patrick Watson, who wakes up every morning angry that his name isn’t Jeff Buckley.

Beyond the broadcast spot, which launched last week on the major networks, the campaign also includes digital display, radio and print work (below).