Christmas In Adland: Our Roundup of 2017's Christmas Campaigns

by Dec 1, 2017

As a flurry of Christmas campaigns hit our screens, we give you a roundup of festive cheer.

Happy Dec 1st. It’s officially the start of the Christmas season (so we say anyway). Join us as we look over some of the festive campaigns that have caught our eye. Grab a glass of sherry, ponder over cheese and tuck into our roundup of 2017’s Christmas offering. What better way to be merry than with a Christmas ad (or ten)?!

Debenhams – #YouShall Find Your Fairytale Christmas

Cinderella gets a reimagined in the Debenhams 2017 Christmas ad. With a good dose of fairytale and some old fashioned romance, the brand showcases a contemporary take on the Disney classic whilst cleverly featuring products and modern day lifestyle. Richard Cristofoli, Debenhams MD of beauty and marketing, said: “Customers told us they expect to be entertained at Christmas. ‘You Shall’ is a modern take on a classic fairytale with finding at its core. Our story is heart-warming and uplifting.The full campaign showcases our breadth of gifts for everyone.”

Heathrow Airport – Coming Home for Christmas

My favourite ad from this years offering – The bears are back, this year explaining that “coming home for Christmas is the best gift of all”. The spot, from Heathrow Airport, shows the heartwarming story of a 50-year romance at Terminal One. Beware though, this ad has made me cry each time I’ve watched it. Tissues at the ready!

TK Maxx – ‘A White Christmas’

An interesting incentive from TK Maxx this year – the chance to win white snow to your door. Find an exclusive snow globe in store or online at and the retail company will come and cover your home in real snow. The Christmas ad reinforces this concept with a quirky spot to explain the idea. Personally I love this! Great work.

Sainsbury’s – #everybitofChristmas

As somewhat of a departure from blockbuster Christmas campaigns of previous years, the supermarket chain has gone for a low key ad with and created an original song that is sung by the public and employees to create footage. Although the ad shows everyone enjoying Christmas and also carries on from their ongoing campaign, it’s surprisingly weak when comparing it to some of the previous years such as Mog’s Christmas Calamity, 1914 and Christmas in a Day. Better luck next year!

Boots – #ShowThemYouKnowThem

This year, Boots have shifted the focus of their Christmas spot to ‘meaningful gifting’ as part of a change in direction by new creative agency Ogilvy. The nostalgic and heartwarming ad looks at the relationship between real-life sisters and how finding the perfect gift can show someone how well you truly know them.

John Lewis – Moz the Monster

Every year as Christmas approaches, the country waits with anticipation for the arrival of the oh so popular John Lewis Christmas ad. This years campaign features Moz the Monster who lives under the bed of a rather cute little boy named Joe. Although the campaign is quite cute, I remain by the opinion that the 2011 spot entitled ‘The Long Wait’ is the most moving John Lewis ad to date.

H&M – A Magical Christmas

One of the last to be released, H&M revealed it’s whimsical story late in November staring singer Nicki Minaj and Grey’s Anatomy actor Jesse Williams. The film see’s Williams reading a imaginative bedtime story to his daughter where he makes down-to-earth mom (Minaji) into a curious winter queen and himself into a fast and formidable fairy. With a clear influence from Alice in Wonderland, the short version of the ad is a little confusing, yet in saying this, when watching the full ad the true story is revealed and is rather magical.

M&S – Paddington & The Christmas Visitor

Everyone’s favourite Peruvian bear has taken over from Mrs Claus in the M&S 2017 Christmas ad. Created by Grey London, this year’s spot is a more child-friendly tie in with the release of the Paddington 2 movie, launching under the hashtag #LoveTheBear. A lovely spot with plenty of festive cheer, but then I am biased as I love Paddington!

Aldi – Christmas Spirits ft. Kevin The Carrot 2017

Kevin the carrot is back with the 2017 extension of his adventurous story. This year he is finding love on a luxurious sleeper train. Adam Zavalis, Marketing Director at Aldi UK, said: “We launched Kevin last year with the line, ‘heroes are grown, not born’. And Kevin really did grow into our hero. Our customers took him to their hearts and enjoyed watching his escapades in the run up to Christmas. We just had to bring him back again this year to help showcase our latest show-stopping festive range. Let’s hope Katie the Carrot loves Kevin as much as we all do.”

Very – Get More Out of Giving

The ad from Very this year follows the story of a little girl as she spreads festive cheer with her little pink boxes. As she takes on the journey she is accompanied by her much-loved toy wolf who we see being brought to life to accompany our heroine. It’s a beautifully heart-warming animated short with a sweet ending.

Asda – Best Christmas Ever

Personally, I think this is the strongest of the 2017 supermarket Christmas ads. Asda launched their Christmas spot ahead of the competition with a product focus rather than an emotive storyline. Offering insight into a creative workshop, we see a young girl and her grandfather go around different sections of the workshop in a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory style adventure.

Lidl – Every Lidl Thing for Christmas

Going against the grain, the supermarket chain has released a selection of 7 short ad’s rather than 1 longer spot this Christmas. Each clip focuses on a different character paired with a Lidl Christmas product. The quirky spots, all named brilliantly, act as short and sweet reminders of what Christmas is all about.

Peacocks – #XMASFACTOR

Could this be the turkey of the 2017 Christmas ads? Watch it and tell us what you think.

I have to be honest, personally I think this year hasn’t been the strongest for Christmas campaigns across the board (bah humbug). Nonetheless it has put us all in the mood for a merry festive season ahead… Now where are the mince pies?!

What do you think of this year’s Christmas ads? Tell us over on Twitter @toworkorplay.


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About Natalie Jahangiry

Natalie is half Persian with a Geordie accent. Although small in stature, she makes up for it with a big personality! As a Graphic Designer you will often find Natalie gushing about her passion for all things creative and sharing her ideas with everyone and anyone who will listen. If she’s not decorating her house you will find her cooking up recipes from her foodie family or propped up in a cocktail bar in town.