World records shattered every day, 10 million tweets sent during the Opening Ceremony alone and an ongoing brouhaha over the overbearing branding restrictions, you would think one event would dominate Unruly’s Global Ads Chart during July.

But it is not the Olympics that sparked the most social video buzz across the globe last month - it is the upcoming US Elections.

2012 US Presidential Election Takes Social Video Spots for July

Despite voters not taking to the polls until early November, six of the top 14 most shared ads during July came from Barack Obama’s or Mitt Romney’s presidential campaigns.

Obama’s ads have so far generated the most interest. Both Barack and Mitt have three videos in the top 20, however, it is the Democratic candidate’s clips that attracted the most shares across Facebook, Twitter and the blogosphere during July.

Firms, Beyonce’s Letter and Delivering Affordable Healthcare attracted 219,106 shares in total last month, almost a third more than Republican rival Romney’s ads, These Hands, What Happened? and No Evidence managed (152,751).

Not that we can really read too much into it at such an early stage, apart from the fact that the election has really captured the attention of social media users worldwide.

2012 London Olympics Global Video Ads for July

Which, judging by Unruly’s Global Ads Chart chart, is more than can be said about the Olympics.

P&G Olympic Ad

London 2012 features in just three of the top 20, with only one ad making the top 10, P&G’s Best Job, which was released back in April

It certainly seems like an opportunity squandered by the top brands. You only need to look at the incredible success of Nike’s Write The Future and T-Mobile’s Royal Wedding Dance to see how global celebrations can lead to huge spikes in social activity. And with over 4 billion pairs of eyes watching every run, jump and swim worldwide, they don’t come much bigger than the Olympics.

Like the Super Bowl, the Olympics is an event that appeals to all generations and is well placed toleverage emotional and cultural triggers on a mass scale. However, looking at the chart, it is only really P&G that has grasped the baton so far.

Nike & Adidas Olympic Ads

Sportswear rivals Nike and adidas are doing their best to keep up after both launching campaigns last week.

And so far it is unofficial sponsor Nike that is edging ahead with its Find Your Greatness campaign.  The sportswear giant’s cheeky ambush campaign skilfully tip-toes across the endless minefield of IOC compliance codes with all the care, diligence and poise of a Team GB gymnast.

Launched in the build-up to the Opening Ceremony and feeding off a wave of rampant ‘brandilism’, the tribute to all the back garden heroes and living room gymnasts in the world is certainly a welcome antidote to the overbearing restrictions of the Olympic brand police.

The message was simple: you don’t have to be in the English capital to be a sporting hero this summer. They are just as likely to come from East London, in South Africa, or Little London, in Jamaica.  Sport is for everyone. Greatness is in all of us.

It’s certainly a compelling concept, one that has resonated across the web, with over 32,716 shares since it was launched on July 25, putting it 16th in last month’s chart.

Closely following one place behind is adidas’s cute Photobooth video, in which unsuspecting London shoppers who think they are posing for photos to support TeamGB instead find themselves being photo-bombed by David Beckham.

Cue lots of squeals and tears, from both men and women, plus a lot of shares – 32,016 to be exact.

However, there is one sportsman who will neither be competing at the Olympics nor trying to tell you who to vote for in the autumn that is head and shoulders above the rest – DC Shoes’s Ken Block.

# Top Shared Global Video Ad Campaign - DC Shoes’s Ken Block

Now, Ken Block is not exactly a household name. However, in the world of social video, he might as well be Will Smith or Bruce Willis.

One of the few differences is that, Block, a world rally champion and DC Shoes' Chief Brand Officer, has never had a failure. He's never made turkeys like Wild Wild West or Hudson Hawk.

Every single Gymkhana ad he has done for the cult skateboard shoe company has been a smash hit.

The numbers are simply staggering. Since launching his first of his four car stunt Gymkhana videos in 2008, he has racked up a total of 140 million views, 86,000 YouTube comments and over 7 million shares. Two even feature in the top 5 most shared ads of all time. Not bad for videos that average over seven minutes.
So it is not surprising that his latest video for DC Shoes, Gymkhana 5, which sees Block let loose in San Francisco, home of the iconic Bullitt car chase scene, is already an internet phenomenon.

Released on July 9, it attracted 500,000 shares in its first 24 hours alone. During July it continued to build up momentum, attracting an incredible 1.78 million shares, easily making it the most shared ad last month.

It is also the 12th most shared ad of all time and it shows no signs of slowing down.

Other new ads to feature in July’s top 20 are Sesame Street’s fun parody of Call Me Maybe, Spanish bank Som Sabadell’s beautiful take on the flashmob and Coca-Cola’s life-affirming Security Cameras.

Top 20 Most Shared Global Video Ad Campaigns for July 2012

  1. DC Shoes – Ken Block’s Gymkhana 5 – Ultimate Urban Playground – 1.78million shares during July
  2. Sesame Street Workshop: Share It Maybe – 653,574
  3. Abercrombie & Fitch: Call Me Maybe – 399,286
  4. Som Sabadell: Flashmob – 360,737
  5. Obama For America: Firms – 132,362
  6. Mitt Romney For President: These Hands – 58,489
  7. PBS Studios: Mister Rodgers Remixed – 57,598
  8. Romney For President: What Happened? – 52,349
  9. P&G: Best Job – 46,692
  10. TNT: Dramatic Surprise – 44,151
  11. Obama-Biden: Beyonce’s Letter To First Lady Michelle Obama – 43,916
  12. Obama-Biden: Delivering Affordable Healthcare – 42,828
  13. Greenpeace: A Homeless Bear In Polar Bear In London – 42,364
  14. Romney For President: No Evidence – 41,913
  15. Coca-Cola: Security Cameras – 37,196
  16. Peugeot: Nonstop to Rudimental – 34,290
  17. DC Shoes: Gymkhana 3 – 34,069
  18. Nike: Find Your Greatness – 32,716
  19. Adidas: David Beckham Pops Up At The #takethestage Photobooth – 32,016
  20. BMW: Bullet – 31,260