The Battle of the Christmas Ads
This time of year, people want to get involved and get into the Christmas spirit, and over recent years, this has become a battle of the Christmas ad, with brands throwing huge amounts of money into high production value adverts. The festive advertising push becomes more frequent, giving us gift and meal options we didn’t even know we needed. However, the big battle continues to rage; who has the best advert of them all?
The Christmas advert has been a staple feature on our TVs since before we can remember, but in 2007 John Lewis really stepped it up, creating a new tradition that now sees some of our biggest brand names aim to outstrip the competition. Is it money well spent or is it just a battle of the egos?
So, what about this year’s ensemble?
John Lewis & Partners: Excitable Edgar
This is another beautiful advert from John Lewis and Partners, this year combining the two brands of John Lewis and Waitrose to share the story of Edgar the dragon. You have to hand it to John Lewis as a brand, they really know how to make emotional and relatable Christmas content that is highly anticipated and widely shared.
Does it beat Buster the Boxer on the trampoline or the Bear and the Hare? We will have to see how it fares over the coming festive weeks.
Ikea: Silencing the Critics
This is a bit of a different approach to the normal Christmas advert, but Ikea are never likely to follow the crowd as that’s part of their brand mantra. So, by being bold and different, it helps the content stand out from the crowd.
We think this could be a divisive advert, with maybe traditionalists thinking it strays too far from the festive message, but at the same time, it’s good to be brave and get people talking.
Dogs Trust: A Dog is for Life
A proper weepy one here, especially for pet lovers, who will love it and want to pull their pets close. The Dogs Trust have managed to capture content that is relatable to dog behaviour, how people get caught up in the excitement of it all, but most importantly the powerful message at the end.
Charity Christmas adverts are always going to hit at the emotions, but it is how they balance encouraging behaviourchange without patronising or the potential guilt-trip. This goes for any charity video content, but we really like this one.
Aldi: The Amazing Aldi Christmas Show
Kevin the Carrot is back, and Aldi are playing on popular culture, with its ‘Greatest Showman’ style approach and Brussel sprouts getting the continued bad guy image. It will be interesting to see if Aldi create follow-up adverts to this, as we feel that this year, Kevin doesn’t quite hit the mark as the chosen song might be a Robbie Williams classic, but has no real festive feel.
This is where sometimes brands need to be careful when an idea runs away with itself and in the end, its ultimate goal might not see the greatest return.
What has been your favourite so far? Or will it inevitably be that Christmas celebrations finally start once we see the famous red Santa lorry and “Holidays are Coming” echoes in our ears?
We can learn a lot from how brands have turned to Christmas an opportunity to position themselves among their core audiences, but also, how by creating shareable content, that holds true to its messaging, you can create something that influences, in John Lewis standards, a new tradition (or behaviour change).