With the coming of Christmas, shopping malls start the war of communication campaign. Tired of mountainous commercials and promotions, John Lewis draws an extremely different picture of Christmas which creates new understanding on the shopping festival.
Recently, John Lewis launched their 2012 Christmas campaign with a 90-second TV advert called the journey. The commercial is banking on a love struck snowman’s journey to meet his love.
Please click the picture below to watch the sweet video.
The ad, dubbed ‘The Journey’, opens in a family’s snow-covered garden, with children making a snowman and snowwoman. When the snowman has mysteriously disappeared the next morning, the audience is transported to a magical world, following the determined snowman on an epic journey across river, mountain, road and city. The motive for the snowman’s journey is not revealed until the last scene, when we see him return on Christmas morning.
The love story is unique. Snowman’s love melts my heart. Great visuals and heart rending music leaves the viewer with a lovely warm feeling. I genuinely admire this advert as a tele-visual artwork. Differently with other commercials, it doesn’t actually sell John Lewis nor would it induce me to visit one of their stores. In fact, the advert presents John Lewis’ understanding of Christmas: meeting people you loved, which is much more important than commercials. It’s heartwarmer in the cold winter and therefore it makes me have a great expression on the shopping mall: considerate, warm and sweet. I have to admit emotional sweet story can always work, at least, for me.
In fact, This advert, which features the tag line “Give a little more love this Christmas“, is the follow-up to last year’s multi-award winning campaign, which is highly praised by BBC news as a breakdown in Ads. Actually I love last year’s video more than this newly launched one. I remember When I saw it the first time, I just cannot help crying.
Please click the picture below to enjoy the video. Please do not miss it.
The video features a little boy who could not wait to give his parents the perfect gift on Christmas morning. The child in the video is seven-year-old Lewis McGowan, who in the ad spends 10 days counting off the hours, minutes and seconds until Christmas. Not so he can indulge in a frenzied present-opening fest, but so that he can experience the joy of giving his parents a special gift of his own. The Long Wait is engaging on an emotional level – having a character that we can relate to, such as checking the time again and again, being too exciting to fall asleep and cannot focus on anything else. I totally understand the feeling of cannot wait to give, which is far more excited and even nervous than receiving gifts. I remember every year when I finish preparing the birthday gifts for my parents, I just cannot help telling them before the big day.
John Lewis uses this commercial to press home the real meaning of Christmas – that it is better to give than to receive. Customers put real effort and emotion into finding the perfect gift for their loved ones at Christmas. This commercial succeeds by motivating the philosophy of giving which is extremely hit the core of the festival. More importantly, the smartness is that John Lewis selects an intangible way to encourage customers to consume in the name of showing love.
Above all, I favor the commercials by John Lewis not only because it use a intangible way to describe a beautiful life but also it has been using storytelling to take the viewer through a long-form ad for a few years. It is a successful strategy. Each year, the Christmas commercials it promotes is consistent. When I watch newly launched Ads , I will always go back to review the former ones and expect more for the next year.
If you would like to know more about John Lewis’ Ads, here is another classic commercial from: Never Knowingly Undersold. This one does not focus on Christmas theme, but I extremely like it because of the Britishness as well as the love story that spans time and space.
The advert is the story of two people falling in love. On the left side of the screen we see the girl’s side of the story. She lives in 1925, the year that John Lewis made its life long commitment to Never Knowingly Undersold. On the right side of the screen we see the boy’s side of the story. He lives in the present day. By bringing their two worlds together as one, we show that falling in love, and embarking on a relationship, is a universal story which will keep being replayed throughout time. The Ads tells us while many aspects of our lives today are very different to almost a century ago, the really important things haven’t changed at all.
Please click the picture below and enjoy the romantic story that spans time and space.