John Lewis, Lovehoney, KFC, Coke, Heathrow jingle bells

Xmas_2023_5It’s Chriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiistmaaaaas! Well, that is what many people would like you to believe, with the launch of the John Lewis festive spot marking the official opening of the festivities. 

In fact, John Lewis has turned back the clock for its first Christmas campaign by Saatchi & Saatchi, reverting to the “unsual friend” formula used by previous agency Adam & Eve DDB for so many years.

This time the role of Buster, Penguin and Alien is played by a Venus flytrap, a wannabe Christmas tree named Snapper, who a young boy nurtures from seed in the belief he is cultivating a perfect Christmas tree.

The fast growing plant becomes a force of its own, although it soon grows too big for the living room and is cast out into the cold.

Naturally, ‘Snapper’ is eventually embraced back into family life, giving out presents with such exuberance that the family find a new joy in gathering around their unconventional Christmas tree.

The music is provided by Andrea Bocelli who performs a song called ‘Festa’, which means ‘celebration’, and is written and produced by Le Feste Antonacci specifically for the John Lewis advert, which is also backed by a shedload of merchandise.

Media for “Snapper the perfect tree” is by Manning Gottlieb OMD.

For those looking for fun of a more adult nature, however, Lovehoney’s inaugural festive TV ad uses real customer experiences to showcase the joy of giving or receiving a Lovehoney Christmas present.

Devised by Leith, it features two couples – one of whom is same-sex – and an excited woman unwrapping the gift of pleasure, to champion the idea that sexual happiness is for everyone.

It is based on three real reviews left on the website, including “wow, wow, wow, this toy sent me to space”, “it’s … orgasamazing!!!” and “definitely put this on your Christmas list”.

Despite previous appearances during the festive season, this marks Lovehoney’s first-ever Christmas-specific advertisement, as Lovehoney head of international marketing planning Elaine Sosna said: “Seeing a Lovehoney commercial alongside other Christmas ads will help show how normal it is to give or receive a sex toy as a gift, and how much better your sex life could be as a result!”

Meanwhile, Heathrow has launched its Christmas campaign for 2023 going with the seasonal message that the most special festive memories are those made with loved ones – and often when departing or arriving at the UK’s largest airport.

The integrated campaign, created by St Luke’s, showcases the airport’s departure experience through three human stories, each focusing on a different group of travellers.

In the first ad, “Love”, a young couple are inspired to look forward to future holidays together after seeing another older couple at the airport. The second, titled “Arrival”, centres around a multi-generational family about to take a trip to New Delhi. The third, “Keepsake”, focuses on a father and daughter as they share a heartfelt moment reminiscing about their dearly departed loved one.

Each film ends with the tagline “Heathrow. The best memories start here”.

Over at KFC, every year around this time suggestions come flowing in to the purveyors of crispy chicken that it should offer Kentucky Fried Turkey.

For this year’s Christmas campaign, it is teasing customers about its forthcoming Christmas offering – which will be launching on November 13 – across social media and OOH.

For the next week, KFC will be profiling the requests it has received to switch to turkey (for a limited, Christmastime-only period) – by playing back the social commentary across all media formats.

The aim? To get people ready and excited about the launch of the Christmas menu. And all will be revealed next week apparently…

You will have to wait even longer for Coca-Cola‘s Christmas campaign “The World Needs More Santas”, which despite already being on YouTube, doesn’t launch on UK TV screens until November 17.

Devised by WPP Open X and Stink Films, it hinges on the idea that through acts of kindness, anyone can embrace their inner Father Christmas.

The film portrays a city where hundreds of Santas walk the streets as we see them helping and supporting others, building to the understanding that, in this world full of Santas, we see a world full of kindness.

However, the culmination reveals that what viewers have been witnessing was in fact people’s ‘inner Santa’ as they performed acts of generosity and goodwill.

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