Big production, intricate storyline, little boy doing something for someone else at Christmas with a slight tear. Sure sounds like John Lewis, right? This year, John Lewis left the door wide open with their slightly boring bouncing dog ad. Marks and Spencer appears ready to steal the best in show prize away.
Evaluating the Marks and Spencer Christmas ad
Here’s the latest Christmas ad for 2016, for Marks and Spencer of the UK. This is a very appealing modern-day take on Santa and of course Mrs. Claus, who comes across as modern, empowering with a make-it-happen attitude. Helicopters, GPS and stylish red suit.
And if you look very closely, Mrs. Claus is reading “Fifty Shades of Red” at the end. All the modern appeal and yet, we have a very simple old-fashioned story of a boy trying to do something nice for his sister.
Well done Marks and Spencer. I would give this spot a solid 7.5/10 on the Christmas ad scale. Light on branding, but good solid story-telling in a modern sense. A slight tear at the end. And, most importantly, you just beat John Lewis.
So far, the best ad of the Christmas season goes to Burberry, with a fabulous spot. I give this spot a 9.5/10. This Burberry spot will be hard to beat. Click to read below.
The best advertising must balance being creatively different and strategically smart.
When ads are smart but not different, they get lost in the clutter. It is natural for marketers to tense up when the creative work ends up being “too different.” In all parts of the business, marketers are trained to look for past proof as a sign something will work. However, when it comes to advertising if the ads start too similar to what other brands have already done, then the advertising will be at risk of boring your consumers, so you never stand out enough to capture their attention. Push your comfort with creativity and take a chance to ensure your ad breaks through.
When ads are different but not smart, they will entertain consumers, but do nothing for your brand. Your advertising must be smart enough to trigger the desired consumer response to match your brand strategy.