At this time of the year, we often find ourselves debating with family and friends over which brand ad truly ‘owned’ Christmas. But here at Fold7, we wanted to put the spotlight more specifically on our favourite Christmas ad characters of all time. Yes beautiful snow-filled set designs and catchy seasonal music work wonders, but it’s often the characters themselves that do best to tug away at our festive heartstrings.
Bob Carolgees for Hellman’s Mayonnaise: “A loveable, long-running character for Hellmann’s Mayonnaise back in the day. And, strategically, a charming way of getting people to use the brand outside of the usual summer season.”
Coca-Cola’s Santa: “It’s hard to find another brand that’s had such an impact on a key character of Christmas like Coca-Cola has with Santa Claus. There’s some debate around Coca-Cola’s involvement in turning Santa’s clothes red, but the iconic illustration by Haddon Sundblom and subsequent campaigns, such as ‘Holidays are Coming’, certainly paved the way for the image of a modern Santa. It demonstrated the power of colour and image to create a strong link between a brand and emotion.”
Monty the penguin: “It’s got to be Monty from the latest John Lewis Xmas ad. Beautifully told, emotionally engaging and a lovely twist at the end. With the cuddly toy selling out within 24 hours of launch, there’s no denying the huge impact he’s had on audiences this Christmas. I’m welling up just thinking about it … sniff.”
Harvey Nichols’ ‘self-gifter’: “Harvey Nichols used the best and most memorable type of Christmas character in its ad last year: the self-gifter. Going against the stereotype of thoughtful giving, it reveals a far more interesting and entertaining truth about Christmas – that buying a present for yourself is nearly always the best part. Having only last week convinced myself I definitely deserved that pair of overpriced trainers, ‘Sorry I spent it on myself’ is more than likely what I will have to put in my Christmas cards this year.”