Your favourite Christmas ads in 2015

‘TIS the season to make money – and retailers across the UK are locked in the annual battle of the Christmas ads.

The seasonal scrap pits supermarkets and catalogue firms against department stores and food retailers to create the most memorable commercial, and set the tills jingling as consumers flood through the doors.

As sure as Santa arriving on Christmas Eve, John Lewis has swept the board for the last few years, creating a string of weepie mini-epics to tug on consumer’s heartstrings, and show spending lavishly is the way to have a very merry Christmas.

 

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Previously, competitors have tried to copy the firm’s signature style with highly emotional story-led commercials, but this year there’s a change taking place that could impact on future festive ads.

With more young under 30s – dubbed the Millennial Generation – having children, there’s a subtle but very real shift away from overblown ads to something which better serves the busy family consumer.

New research from our young audience here at Channel Mum shows while the John Lewis ‘Man on the Moon’ ad still registers as the favourite with shoppers, the most effective Christmas ad is Aldi’s, and fellow discounters Argo, Lidl and Asda all polled better than pricier rivals.

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Most significantly, a third of mums quizzed said they plan to shop at Aldi after watching the current ‘Favourite Things’ campaign, compared to just 31 per cent who will buy from John Lewis. While the percentage point difference is small, it’s the first time we’ve seen it – and it’s in line with the more product and price-conscious shopping habits of millennial mums.

What Aldi has done very well is combine the strong pricing and product message, wrapped up with emotional pull and a sprinkling of seasonal hope and positivity. It’s a hard thing to do well but the advert looks effortless and it also appeals to children as there are so many delicious and shiny things to look at – and all the ones kids love!

And there’s also been a change in the way young consumers feel about the money spent on the John Lewis ad. Almost half of young mums feel the £7m cost of the commercial was heavily excessive and would have been better spent in part as a charity donation, while a quarter complain there is way too much hype about it each year. Again, this is the first time we’ve seen these sentiments and is indicative of a new generation coming through.

Now each generation has its own ideas and identity, so with even more young mums holding the purse strings next year, it will be fascinating to see how the changes develop. We know Millennials are practical and price conscious but also aspirational and adore bling and glamour, so bring on the ad that combines all of those and we’ll find next year’s Christmas commercial winner!

 

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