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Editor's Comment: Christmas ads fail to ignite our emotions

Keely Stocker

It’s hard to believe this is my penultimate editor’s comment of the year and the Christmas break is nearly upon us.

This year, there was as much anticipation around the Christmas adverts as ever, but I get the sense that the impact has not been quite as strong.

In past years, there was non-stop talk about John Lewis’s Monty the Penguin and Man on the Moon, Marks & Spencer’s Mrs Claus and the emotional Christmas Truce of 1914 from Sainsbury’s. Although they divided opinion – was the Man on the Moon too melancholy? Was the Sainsbury’s ad in poor taste? – they were undoubtedly memorable.

This week, we take a deeper look at the role of emotion in Christmas campaigns, and rate this year’s ads according to how successfully they tap into consumer sentiment. As we have seen year after year, it is virtually impossible to predict whether shoppers will respond well to an advert. However, those retailers with a deep understanding of their brand and how it fits into their customers’ lives are more likely to succeed.

The 2017 adverts do not seem to have caused the same fervour of previous years, so it will be interesting to see how they perform in terms of conversions to sales.

As well as focusing on Christmas, we are also looking ahead to next year. This week, we bring you the essential trade show dates to mark in your calendar for the autumn 18 buying season. As always, the Drapers team will be at all the key shows this season. 

Like everything else in the industry, the format of trade shows is shifting, and more brands and agents are not venturing out and instead sticking to their showrooms. However, a trade show is still a great place to network with contacts old and new, discover new brands and, at many, place orders.

The relevance of a show depends on your individual business strategy, but I believe brands and buyers would be missing out by failing to attend any of them. My first stop will be menswear show Pitti Uomo in Florence on 9-12 January, and I hope to see many of you there to kick off the new season. 

  • What do you think of this year’s Christmas ads? And are you going to the trade shows in the year new year? Tell us what you think

Readers' comments (1)

  • Ads aren't so important, especially with Generation Z. Do you know anyone who bought an item just because they like the Xmas ad?

    Me neither.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

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