If Christmas ad launches by retailers and supermarkets mark the start of Christmas, then Christmas has officially begun.
Department store Debenhams launched its first Christmas ad in six years this Wednesday, on each of terrestrial TV channels’ biggest shows: at the end of Coronation Street on ITV, Grand Designs on Channel Four and during Dallas on Channel 5. The ad features a woman’s journey home for Christmas.
Also on Wednesday, Marks & Spencer launched its Christmas ad for its clothing range during Coronation Street’s centre break. The ad continues to use the models introduced in its Autumn/Winter campaign, popular for using plus sized women. The ad is shot in the style of a music video and promotes five product ranges including knitwear, dresses and kidswear.
This comes at the same time that Marks and Spencer reported that UK total sales in the 26 weeks ending the end of September grew 0.6 per cent thanks in part to renewed confidence on the high street though like-for-like sales decreased 1.4 per cent. . These figures contrast with Primark like for like sales for the year to September, which grew three per cent.
Also in the fashion retail sector, Matalan launched its Christmas TV advert on Saturday during X-Factor. It features a family at Christmas day opening presents around the Christmas tree, struggling to light the Christmas pudding and carrying the kids to bed. According to Matalan marketing director Lee Pinnington, the ad echoes the retailer’s commitment to being a family retailer that strives to deliver great quality, design and value.
Big launches of fashion retailer ads reflect the importance of the fashion sector to the economy, and represents huge opportunities for supermarkets. Research we have undertaken about these opportunities featured in Talking Retail this week. The work uncovers six fashion shopper segments, with two being especially important to Sainsbury’s and Waitrose.
ASDA also launched its first ever Christmas advertising campaign on Sunday. Following Christmas through a mother’s eyes, the 60-second ad features a mum struggling her way through preparations for the big event. This reflects our work which looks at mums' changing values.
Last Thursday, The Co-operative Food unveiled its Christmas ad campaign, dropping its ‘Good with Food’ strapline for a series of commercials created by The Full Monty director, Peter Cattaneo. The ads, with 27 different executions, use the strapline ‘Here for you for life’, highlighting the availability of the Co-op’s products and seeking to stir customer loyalty.