CultureTV & Film

The Gift of Christmas Adverts

Article by Rebekah Lawrence December 19, 2016

Christmas adverts are becoming synonymous with festive spirit and 2016 isn’t disappointing. From big names like John Lewis, to newcomers such as Heathrow Airport, my Facebook newsfeed is constantly full of likes and shares of the best festive campaigns. Here are some of our favourites from 2016, but don’t be shy in sharing your own with us @milkbathspa.

Coca-Cola with ‘Holidays Are Coming’

For many people Christmas doesn’t start until they see the Coca-Cola truck. 2016 marks the 21st anniversary since our favourite red trucks first drove through villages to the well-known ‘Holidays are Coming’ jingle. In fact, the advert has become so popular the truck now tours around the UK where you can grab a free drink and have your photo taken with the iconic vehicle.

John Lewis and #BusterTheBoxer

John Lewis have shied away from their recent ‘sadvertising’ and instead have given us a reason to jump for joy. 2016’s advert stars Buster the dog, a loved pet who enviously watches as animals from the neighbourhood bounce around on his family’s new trampoline. His moment of fame soon ensues as he joyfully overtakes six-year-old Summer and bounces on the trampoline to the Vaults cover of Randy Crawford’s 1980 single One Day I’ll Fly Away.

John Lewis spent a whopping one million to make 2016’s advert; all animals were filmed in CGI, and the family home was in fact a townhouse set made in Black Island studios, London. Buster the Dog toys are available for purchase from all John Lewis stores and 10% of the proceeds be given to Wildlife Trust charities: just like John Lewis promote, they’re ‘gifts that everyone will love’.

Marks and Spencer’s, ‘Christmas with love from Mrs Claus’

This year M&S carried out heavy research to discover what their market wanted to see in 2016’s campaign. Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne, Executive Director of customer marketing and M&S.com, believes ‘Mrs Claus is the result of thousands of conversations that we had with our customers to understand what they want from M&S – which is warmth, empathy and a touch of humour presented in a modern and contemporary way.’

The Christmas ad features Jake, a young boy, writing to Mrs Claus on Christmas Eve in the hopes that she’ll be able to help him make peace with his sister, Anna, by replacing her broken trainers.

The advert is full of little messages and Christmas spirit: look carefully and you’ll see the sled is called R-DOLF, the book Mrs Claus pretends to read is entitled Fifty Shades of Red and despite telling Mr Claus not to eat too many, she goes ahead and eats both mince pies. The campaign extends itself into M&S stores, with assistants carrying out 15,000 acts of ‘Mrs Claus kindness’. Head into store to see what you can get your hands on – from free coffee to party makeovers, they’ve covered all bases.

Heathrow Airport, ‘Coming Home for Christmas’

Moving on we find a newcomer. Hitting over four million views on YouTube, Heathrow Airport definitely embraced the Christmas spirit on this one. A hard hitter for all of those who live away from family and loved ones, the advert begins with two teddy bears safely landing home on a flight. We follow their journey through the airport as they tackle the trials and tribulations the airport is filled with and all the help the staff have to offer to make traveling easier.

The old spirit is captured perfectly in their struggle with the long walks, moving escalators and retrieving their bags from the conveyor belt to name a few; winning over our hearts completely. Capturing the moment loved ones are reunited at the arrivals gate, the characters are transformed from teddies to Grandparents – just in time to catch their grandchildren’s hugs. ‘Coming home, the best gift of all’ is Heathrow Airport’s motto and we think it captures this magic.

 

What are your thoughts on the Christmas adverts this year? Tweet @milkbathspa to share your favourite.

 

 

Feature image:  © Vasile Cotovanu. Original Via Flickr / Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike License

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