In today’s day and age, simple TV adverts are no longer enough. Companies are turning to social media to actively engage audiences and give their campaigns a unique edge. This is especially true during the holiday season, when it seems as if every major company is fighting for the title of best Christmas advert. This year, we saw a greater emphasis on digital marketing to accompany the traditional TV adverts. Here are some of the best digital and social media campaigns so far.
John Lewis—Buster the Boxer
John Lewis invested heavily in social media marketing this year. Whether or not people enjoyed the advert, the interactive techniques proved a fun way for people to engage with the campaign. The department store created sponsored Selfie Lenses on Snapchat, allowing users to transform into Buster the Boxer. John Lewis was active on Twitter, too. They always build up publicity on the social media platform, but this year they experimented with Twitter stickers, giving users the ability to decorate their pictures with Buster and his furry friends. Most impressively, John Lewis thought outside the box and looked to the rise of virtual reality. In their London-based flagship store, customers can bounce with Buster and the others in an Oculus Rift headset—this experience is also available to those with Google Cardboard.
Aldi—Kevin The Carrot
Aldi excelled at digital marketing with their Kevin The Carrot campaign. Leading up to the advert’s debut, a Kevin The Carrot Twitter account—using #KevinTheCarrot and sharing mysterious pictures of the character out in public—started gaining publicity. Many people originally thought Kevin was the creation of John Lewis, due to their tendency to create friendly Christmas characters with accompanying Twitter accounts. But as time went on and people began to suspect Aldi, the buzz grew, and Aldi had a successful social media campaign on their hands.
Marks and Spencer—Christmas with Love
M&S has often missed the mark with Christmas adverts, but this is their year. The touching ad already has a reputation on social media for making viewers shed a few happy tears. The star of the ad is the chic and stylish Mrs. Claus, portraying the trendiness and sophistication that M&S’s target consumers wish to express. M&S decided to promote this ad on their Facebook and Twitter pages with the help of a special guest—Mrs. Claus herself. For 24 hours after the launch of the ad, Mrs. Claus responded to users’ social media posts with personalized messages. Not only did this raise awareness and promote the commercial, but it added to the emotional aspect of the ad, evoking a sense of nostalgia. You can also find Mrs. Claus on Channel 4, where she’ll be giving holiday fashion, decoration and recipe tips.
Lidl–#LidlSurprises: Christmas Turkey
Their English holiday advert may not have had the desired reaction, but Lidl are making up for it in a big way with their latest social media campaign. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, Lidl is letting customers control their prices. The more people tweet about Lidl products, the more the prices will drop, with a new selection each week. The campaign is a genius way to gain publicity at a time when the company has the opportunity to increase sales thanks to the upcoming holiday. It’s also extremely engaging, and gets the audience actively involved with the company. Tapping into the festive feeling of giving back, this campaign is sure to be a success.
Waitrose—Home for Christmas
Waitrose’s ‘Home for Christmas’ advert shows the emotional journey of a Scandinavian robin migrating home, while a young girl anxiously awaits its arrival. The heart-warming ad was a hit, with many viewers using social media to praise this as the best Christmas advert of the year. To make the most out of this tale, Waitrose has taken on an impressive integrated marketing approach; the ad will air on TV and in theatres as a 3D adventure, the supermarket is selling related toys and books and an interactive game will be available to play online. Waitrose understands the power of social media, encouraging users to share their thoughts with the hashtag #HomeForChristmas. There will also be social media takeovers on numerous accounts to take followers on the robin’s treacherous adventure.