It's that time of year again. The John Lewis Christmas advert has launched and everyone has an opinion. This year's advert has received a lot of attention - university students have made a £700 parody of the £7 million ad, someone has made a Star Wars version, and most of the major UK newspapers have made some comment.
For their £7 million spend, John Lewis are hoping to boost their own sales as well as raise awareness and money for UK charity Age UK. In addition to putting the spotlight on loneliness among the elderly, the profit from the sale of three Man On The Moon products - a mug, gift tag and card - will go to Age UK and their work with the elderly.
The budget for the ad has been criticized by many, perhaps most notably by the art students who made their own version. The retail giant has been critiqued for sending the message that consumerism is the solution to loneliness, and by remaking the ad for £700 the students wished to show that Christmas is not about the amount of money you spend. No matter what you think about the advert and its message, the win for John Lewis is that you have opinions about it and have probably talked about it with your friends and co-workers.
The John Lewis phenomenon
With their Christmas advert, John Lewis has managed to create something of an advertising phenomenon. The Daily Telegraph had a countdown clock for the ad launch, and last year's Monty the Penguin campaign resulted in a sales uplift of over 13%, earning John Lewis more than £100 million in a week.
John Lewis will spend around £6 million on television slots, internet visibility and press - but in reality, the Christmas advert is on half the lips in Britain before it has hit prime-time commercial breaks. For John Lewis and advertising agency Adam&Eve, the Christmas ad is a prime example of how content marketing can add enormous value to your brand and to your bottom line.
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