The time of year is upon us. It’s the time of the big Christmas adverts. We all seem to forget the purpose of these adverts is to make people buy things. The adverts suddenly become films, with promo shoots, behind the scenes videos, hashtags, media coverage, merch and trailers.
And you can see why, the adverts always have so much more meaning, and care and attention put into them. They can be up to 4 minutes long with characters and storylines and they sometimes don’t even feature the brand name till the end. So you can see why it’s easy to forget they’re just marketing tools. As a media student doing a unit on advertising this time of year is basically a godsend.
This year, so far, four Christmas adverts have been released. And I’m going to rank them in order, from my least favourite, to favourite.
Contrary to most people, this years ad from Sainsburys is my least favourite so far. I felt as though it was a little too long, and I think it needs watching at least twice before you start picking up on the really great character diversity. Although getting James Corden involved is pretty huge and the musical element makes it unique compared to the rest.
It’s so hard for me to order the next three as I really adore them all. But I think the John Lewis one will be the next one. The diversity for the ad is so good (although the gender roles are less good), the dog is a breed that has a negative and incorrect stereotype (if you google Boxer dogs the suggested similar searches are dobermans and pitbulls which also have bad connotations) I wouldn’t be surprised if sales/adoptions of Boxers went up. I’m an animal lover so seeing the cute foxes and hedgehog and squirrels and badgers on a bloody trampoline made me SO happy! But I’m putting it third because they didn’t develop the characters enough to make it 100% emotive.
My next one is the Waitrose Christmas advert, which actually hasn’t taken off as much as it’s parent company John Lewis has, or does every year. But I think it’s extremely cute and actually quite emotional. It follows the journey of a little beautiful robin on its way home, through miles of forest and sea. I don’t want to spoil it for those of you who haven’t seen it, but a big wave happens and I actually gasped and was genuinely worried. Its the shortest of all the ads so far, but it packs in so much storyline. The music is powerful and there’s no speech in it at all. All eyes are on the bird. It made me a little bit teary eyed. But that was nothing compared to the tears I shed for my favourite ad this year.
The M&S advert has stolen the show. It’s exploring Mrs Claus which never really happens, she is so girl power it’s amazing, and it’s all about sibling relationships and I cried when I first saw it and continue to get emotional every time I watch it. If you have a sibling, even if you aren’t close, you’ll find it tugs at your heart strings. It’s also quite comedic too, the line about forgetting Australia makes me laugh every time. AND at the end she’s reading 50 Shades of Red. RED. It’s filmed beautifully too, and there’s a cute dog which always helps.