It’s that time of year again. Love it or hate it, the Christmas adverts are here. Supermarkets start stocking wrapping paper, decorations, and the latest gift or craze. But what advert, past or present, pulls on your heartstrings? Which one signals to you that Christmas is around the corner? The battle for the Christmas advert top spot is a fierce one each year. The big brands fight to bring you the most viral, memorable, and all-around feel-good advert to date.
We’ve got together a top 10 list from the ’80s, ’90s, the noughties, and recent adverts for you to reminisce over. Enjoy.
Marks and Spencer – Christmas Food – 2006
Food, but not just any food. A classic ‘Marks and Sparks’ advert sets the scene with a bit of ‘extra special’ Christmas food and a very sultry voice-over. This theme became almost a template for M&S, with subsequent years following suit. A firm favourite.
Age UK/John Lewis – Man on the moon – 2015
A mashup from 2015, with a poignant message. Age UK and John Lewis teamed up to bring awareness to the sad fact that “a million older people can go a month without speaking to anybody.” A powerful reminder for us to show someone they are loved at Christmas.
Marks and Spencer – Christmas with love – 2016
Marks and spencer with a more customer-centric advert in 2016. Christmas with love from Mrs. Claus shows us the all too common squabbling between siblings. Showing that no matter their differences, there is love.
Toys“R”Us – Magical Place – 1989
Not strictly a Christmas advert, but we go back to the ’80s for this classic. Toys“R”Us is an iconic brand many of us will recognise. Sadly, they stopped trading a few years back, but some online articles suggest they are making a comeback. Nostalgic animation that many will remember.
Irn-Bru – Snowman – 2011
A funny re-imagining of the classic snowman animation with new lyrics and a refusal to share a drink. Fun fact, Coca-Cola is the number 1 drink in any country that sells it apart from one. You guessed it, Scotland, where the nation’s favourite soft drink is Irn-Bru.
Boots – #SpecialBecause – 2014
No sounds, no words, just a powerful backing track. Showing a family getting together for someone special in their lives. Even more profound in 2021 with that someone special being a nurse.
Yellow Pages – Mistletoe – 1992
An innocent, festive, and simple Merry Christmas from the Yellow Pages. When was the last time you can remember seeing that big old book? Rarely seen in paper form anymore, but an iconic image and advert enjoyed by many.
John Lewis – The Long Wait – 2011
John Lewis could easily have multiple entries in any Christmas advert list. Still, one of our favourites is ‘The Long Wait.’ Following a young lad, eagerly awaiting the arrival of Christmas Day, but not for the obvious reasons.
Sainsbury’s with The Royal British Legion – 1914 – 2014
A powerful story, one you may have first heard in a history lesson at school. Inspired by actual events from over 100 years ago, the Christmas truce immortalised by Sainsbury’s and The Royal British Legion in a genuinely great Christmas advert.
Coca-Cola – Holidays are coming – 1995
“Nothing lights up Christmas like Coca-Cola.” It’s hard to beat, big jolly red Santa swigging a bottle of coke featured on the side of a giant delivery truck convoy. The memorable jingle and festive bright lights mean Christmas is here. The history of Coca-Cola and Santa Clause runs deep, Coca-Cola helped shape the image of Santa, and he has featured on ads since the 1920s.
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