Twas the Run up to Christmas

Twas the run up to Christmas and all through the office,

All colleagues were chattering about John Lewis.

The Christmas ads have landed.

Hopefully big brands will not be left empty handed.

2016 has been a year of emotional instability, some would even say it has been a write off. Brexit, Harambe, Ebola, Gene Wilder, Zika virus, Prince, Alan Rickman,Pete Burns, Terry Wogan, Victoria Wood and of course Bowie. It’s been a bit poo.

I speak for the population when I say we NEED Christmas cheer. This is probably why none of the big brands have tried to pull at our heart strings this year. So far in 2016 all ads have focussed around humour, strength and happiness.


How are big brands emptying our bank accounts this year?

Burberry are keeping consistent by taking us back to our roots. British heritage is celebrated; this ad is even humbling. The brand, who are royalty of classic garments, describe themselves as ‘young, old’. Utilising technology to premiere old tales is exactly how they pulled off this year’s enchanting experience. ‘The Tale of Thomas Burberry’ makes me proud to be British.

Burberry 2015   Burberry 2016

Argos have moved away from traditional ads. These days, 8ft multi-coloured yetis on skates gliding around London will strip you of £30k. So, is it worth it? This ad certainly creates the feeling of an exciting Christmas in a one-of-a-kind style which makes it memorable compared to Argos’ previous attempts.

Argos 2015          Argos 2016


Asda have teamed up with Saatchi & Saatchi and 449 to make us smile. The most relatable advert on our screens so far this year. We’re talking uncles making the bath into a bed, passing the entire kitchen contents around the table and filling any available object with chocolate. The great thing about Asda is that they haven’t tried to be something they’re not.

Asda 2015           Asda 2016


House of Fraser (working with 18 Feet and Rising) have stuck with what they know. Big, bold, dramatic. This ad brings the energy to Christmas that others lack. Getting Laura Mvula to support them reflects 2015’s strategy of using current artists to exaggerate their contemporary message.

House of Fraser 2015      House of Fraser 2016


Even John Lewis have gone for humour over tear jerking. Who doesn’t love all the cute woodland creatures and of course #BusterTheBoxer bouncing on a trampoline. However, last year’s ‘Man on the Moon’ is incomparable. John Lewis’ 2015 certainly pulled some heart strings and wettened some cheeks. They always seem to pull off something unexpected and brilliant.

John Lewis 2015                John Lewis 2016


And never one to be outdone, Aldi. After last year’s ground breaking piss take, what more could we ask for. Kevin the carrot was making incognito appearances all over Twitter (@KevinTheCarrot) in the run up to the big ad reveal. The originally German shop has even been using John Lewis’ #BusterTheBuster along with their own #KevinTheCarrot. Well played Aldi, John Lewis aren’t even mad (see below). Is this Aldi’s new strategy, to follow John Lewis with tongue in cheek ads?

Aldi 2015              Aldi 2016




The first deal breaker for all Christmas ads will be Black Friday. Cue screaming terror as thousands stampede into retail stores in all major cities. In 2015, retailers cashed up £25bn over the festive period and June 2016 saw a 4.3% sales volume increase compared to June 2015. Whether you’re splashing the cash or counting your pennies this year, I wish you a (premature) Merry Christmas!