Animals in advertising — Camel family
The Camel family is not very popular with copywriters. We've less than twenty adverts and only two of them with llamas. It's remarkable that all (but one) finds are dated after the year 2000.

Camels — that is generally known — cruise the deserts on a drop of water. They are therefore almost exclusively cast in a dry setting and relating to frugality while a chuckle is never far away.

published: vii.2007

The camel in
our first advertisement is equipped with back lights and a license plate. It there­fore is instantly clear — even without looking further — that we are going to learn something about cars, or driving, or engines. We have told you earlier about the Universal Standard for Car Adverts (the USCA green book). Our advert at hand (1) is actually about a lubricant but it is obvious that the writer had the green book within sight. Let's see what we can learn:
In Belgium we have plenty of water, almost no oil and we're driving with cars. In the Middle East they have plenty of oil, almost no water and trafic is camel-based. Wouldn't it be nice to have your car as frugal as a camel ? It can be done with Black Gold® The text then explains how the stuff works and ends with Black Gold® lets you save much black gold.
That is at least suggestions a, b and f of the USCA-advice. We have an advert of the same brand where it stresses the power of the engine and not its mileage. That is a job beyond the camel's capacities and therefore a black panther was chosen (see Bigger cats, No. 8). The closing line there was Black Gold®. Black power.

(1) 198? – Like to make your car as frugal as a camel? — lubricant
(2) 2005 – Needs less water than a camel — floor scrubber
(3) 2002 – Drink responsibly — whisky

The floor scrubber
(2) has the same characteristics as the dromedary: an animal needing almost no water to walk very far. The scrubber needs just one spoon per square meter which makes for less waste and is good for the environment, they say.

The approach of
the J & B whisky brand is most original (3). I consider it (one of) the best camel advertisement(s). It was published in December in full christmass frenzy. The brand's name is not mentioned but the El único que es único (a play with words in Spanish meaning the only one which is unique) makes clear that it's about Justerini & Brooks whisky. The ampersand (& that is) has a weird shape more like a capital E than a real ampersand. Turn it 90° counter clock wise and you have two nice baskets ready for a load of presents. A horse, or a donkey, or a raindeer (it depends on who's bringing the presents) could have been chosen, but the designer took a camel. A very good choice in view of the footer Drink responsibly. The message is enhanced by queueing the camels next to a row of parking meters: this is about driving and drinking. Well done.

(4) 2002 – You think it's a mirage? — Hydrogen engine
(5) 2005 – Our consultants bring you that little extra.

Do you believe
that a hydrogen car is a mirage ? It's actually on the road already. — As a prototype of course. Advert 4 says that it is a simple solution, reliable and ecological! The camels probably have a double meaning. First they stand for the desert where mirages are often seen, I think. A second reason could be that they run for a long time on small amounts of food and drink and because the end product of the combustion is water.

Our consultants bring
you that little extra (5). They recognize an opportunity when they see one. To the benefit of your project. Making the impossible (or dreams) happen is often illustrated with contrast. With camels the approach of choice is contrasting this hot desert animal with something cold. We learn from the penguin of No. 5 that this company goes far out of the way to make the impossible happen — We have more penguins in the desert. In example 7 it is the camel which is leaving its habitat and then emerges on an ice-berg to illustrate that with this camera you are only limited by your own imagination.

(6) 2006 – Welcome in the land of the sun goddess — Egypt
(7) 2003 – Inspired by your dreams — camera
(8) 2002 – Prefer to wait for long term gains? — investments

The Turtle and
the Hair becomes The Camel and the Hair in advert 8. Speed and continous effort were important points in the original story. The investment company agrees that a fast start (the hair) is welcomed but that long term results (the infatiguable camel) are more important. But why was the turtle not good enough and had to be replaced by a camel ?

(9) 2007 – Wanna know how llamas help to cure disease ?! — job vacancies

Lamas are related
with camels and were found in two advertisements. In the first advert the Lama stands for adventure and Peru (a bit like No. 6 where the camel relates to Egypt).

The other advert (No. 9) needs some more explanation. The company is pioneering medicines (called nanobodies®), which it believes could treat serious diseases like Alzheimer's. The nanobodies® are based on antibodies of llamas. The antibodies of llamas (and other camels) are much smaller than the human equivalents making it possible for nanobodies® based on them to reach parts of the body otherwise out of limits. The llama in No. 9 doesn't mean anything else than itself. (Note: I am including this advert against my own rules: the introduction says Advertisements where the animal is present in its own right are not included.)

Wild camels are critically endangered.
The Wild Camel Protection Foundation tries to save them. Read at Wild Camel Protection Foundation (latest check ix.2022) how you can help to protect the wild Bactrian camel.