You can't fail to miss the John Lewis Christmas advert every single year and whether you like it or not, you can't deny it is a masterpiece of marketing, advertising and design alike.
You'll have seen this years #manonthemoon, you'll probably still have a tear in your eye from Monty the Penguin and you'll still remember the premise of The Bear & The Hare but if you Google John Lewis ad 2012, 2011 and so on you'll watch them again and remember all the feels all over again.
The marketing campaign for the John Lewis ad is second to none, the creatives and the marketing strategists on the Christmas team are a clever bunch of folks. It is the most eagerly anticipated new advert of the holidays (the Coca Cola 'holidays are coming' is obvs the crowned winner of all time) and though this year some come close (Sainsburys, Asda, Lidl Christmas School), John Lewis reigns supreme.
I wrote a little bit about this years Christmas advert in this Best Of The Week blog post but having watched a tonne of different festive ads since the release of John Lewis' masterpiece, you have to take your hats off to whoever came up with the idea.
The hype each year for the advert is getting bigger and bigger and I, like a lot of people checked it out on Youtube just ten minutes after it was released let alone the 8392849023850938 others who waited for the first tv showing during Channel 4's Gogglebox. It is one of those things (similar to the Adele album advert during the X Factor- SO GOOD) that you hear about for days, weeks in advance, you wait for the release and then you have to see it before everyone else, go mad for it on social media and then express your love for it to countless friends and family.
This hype is built up by simply uttering the words John Lewis Christmas Ad 2015 and a release date and the work is done. This is the product of a good few years of making quality festive adverts that have a classic mix of a cute story, some snow, a child, a tear jerking message and a melancholic vocal over a song we all know. This formula wins every time for JL but it is the marketing that follows the advert release that keeps us coming back for more.
This year, the big seller of the advert is its links with Age Uk and the work it is doing for charity but what you might not know is the plethora of marketing and PR wonder that awaits you on the #manonthemoon section of the John Lewis website. For one it has it's own moving illustrated version of the advert, it has an Instagram account, A Facebook page and a Twitter following. You can watch the advert on Youtube, you can buy the song on Itunes or stream it on Spotify. There's an app available on IOS and Android that includes a game, education on the moon and a countdown to Christmas Day itself. There's obviously the links with Age Uk and a chance to donate and there's information on the charity, the work it does and why the cause is so important. There's a lunar lookout on the rooftop of a store on Oxford Street, a chance to see the moon from selected branches, chances for selfies on the bench of the old man and an educational pack for children to learn more about space and the moon. And to top it all off it that wasn't enough, there's also the range to shop in store and online and alright whilst the telescope might be a bit pricey the illustrated mugs, cushions, cards, pjs and everything else are beautiful, plus who can forget how quickly Monty the Penguin sold out last year?
The marketing team of the John Lewis ad have hit the nail on the head with this post production marketing. The wealth of information available relating to the ad plus the products you can buy makes for a very profitable season for the company and whilst we can't all make an advert with a budget of millions or create a whole range to shop from, we can definitely try and emulate the inclusivity of all platforms both online and in the flesh. John Lewis' stretch into Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, website, app, educational packages, ecommerce, iTunes, Spotify and more is the perfect example of a cracking marketing campaign. Hats off to whoever tries to topple them.