It's that time of year when all the major retailers release their Christmas adverts!
This year there has been a fair bit of criticism for a couple of major retailers. Firstly Waitrose donating their Christmas advert budget to charity whilst John Lewis go to town on theirs received a mixed reception, and being part of the same group that message seemed to be conflicting for a lot of people. However as John Lewis pointed out the two businesses are operated separately and have their own unique values and culture.
So was the Asda advert sexist? Mum's and women do a lot of running about at Christmas, just as Dad's and men do, and focusing on one gender and not another does not by default make an advert sexist. Any retail analyst will tell you that for most FMCG retailers the purchasing power is heavily with women and reaching out to busy mother's is not unfamiliar ground, after all Iceland based their whole campaign for many years on 'That's why mums go to Iceland'.
John Lewis have a snow romance on the go to the Power of Love by Frankie Goes to Hollywood. I don't think it's had the same impact as their adverts over last couple of years have had. It's hard to buy into snow boy meets snow girl and must go to any lengths to get her a matching scarf and glove set for Christmas, even if the music is great. I think the award winning tug at the heart strings advert of last year's little boy was magic, if a little sentimental...but if you can't do sentimental at Christmas...when can you! John Lewis only started TV campaigns in 2007 but they seem to have become and institution already and eagerly awaited.
M&S, Tesco's and Boots have dropped the celebrity appearances in their adverts, it seems the recession is causing retailers to not be too overtly flashy with their Christmas adverts.
Littlewoods came under a lot of criticism last year for its myth busting of Santa Claus, this year they seem to have brought him back to life, fronted by an angelic looking Myleene Klass.
Just a few of the Christmas adverts by the clients we work with - there will be plenty more to blog over the next few weeks, as the installation of supporting in store POS materials is currently being rolled out nationwide. Christmas is well and truly on its way!