Although the past year has been one of the strangest and most frustrating in recent memory, the Christmas season is now well and truly upon us. People are really embracing the Christmas period this year with the hope that lockdown restrictions might be eased and people will get to spend time with their families. Without much else to look forward to it has also been predicted that the Christmas period will be huge for retail, with many already starting their shopping online despite much of physical retail being closed this year. One of the biggest parts of the Christmas season is always the Christmas adverts and this year is no exception. Such a huge part of the marketing, we have decided to put together a list of Christmas 2020 adverts ranked from worst to best;
17. Argos – Christmas Advert 2020
Could someone please let Argos know that their catalogue is no longer a thing? This advert would have been great about 10 years ago but not really sure it resonates with people that much any more. It also features a new Gary Barlow song, so we will deduct points for that too. With so many shops being shut this year it would’ve been a better idea to promote their click and collect service, available at lots of local locations even throughout lockdown, but what do we know…
16. Morrisons – Making Christmas Special
We’re not really sure how a Dua Lipa song fits into Christmas and whether it was worth paying for as the actual advert turned out to be rather uninspiring from Morrisons. It’s also very short compared to most of the others without any real message apart from a few subtle 2020 references. Not enough substance from the Morrisons advert for us, maybe spend the budget on the ad instead of the song next year?
15. Asda – That’s an Asda Price Christmas
Is this a bad advert? No. Is it a good advert? No. A rather unremarkable entry from Asda this year that doesn’t really have a message or any memorable angle other than good prices. It features a family preparing for Christmas and annoying their neighbour in the process. With some 2020 references it could have been worse, but there isn’t really much more to say about it.
14. Aldi – Kevin the Carrot
Do we really need another Kevin the Carrot advert? Sure the kids might like it but they’re not the ones spending their hard-earned money. This year’s effort from Aldi comes in two parts but the main advert features Kevin the Carrot trying to get home for Christmas and seems half hearted, although there is a good appearance from Jim Broadbent as Santa. This year’s advert falls short of their previous Kevin the Carrot installments and feels lazy this time around.
13. Walkers – A Sausage CaRoll
Sausage Roll flavoured crisps? Does anyone want that? We’re not really sure this classifies as a proper Christmas advert as it is really just a shameless plug for their latest flavour invention in collaboration with LadBaby. At least we don’t have to hear another sausage roll song rendition reaching Christmas number one this year. Still, at least it’s original so we’ve put it above Aldi this year.
12. Lidl – Big on Christmas
Taking a jab at their budget supermarket rivals, Lidl even went as far as serving up a cooked Kevin the Carrot to poke fun at Aldi’s campaign. Although a decent effort, it isn’t all too original but we do admire their boldness, which puts them ahead of their rivals this year. Losing marks from a shameless plug of the Lidl Christmas jumper, is that really something that people would buy?
11. Sainsbury’s – Gravy Song
Sainsbury’s seem to be cheating this year with three different Christmas adverts, so we will rank their first. A nice advert with a good family theme but like his daughter in the ad, we’re still not sure about the gravy song. The ad features a call between father and daughter expressing their desire to be home for Christmas. A decent effort from the supermarket giant but they’ve had better ads in the past.
10. Boots – Help Fight Hygiene Poverty
A nice advert from Boots with a very good message and cause, but we coudn’t help feeling they could’ve made more of this? Cute animation on the products but it doesn’t grab your attention as much as some of the other ads this year. It features different hygiene products animated with smiley faces but the powerful message could have been lost with a rather plain advert.
9. Not on the High Street – The Magic of Small Things
A good effort from the lesser known online marketplace Not on the High Street, promoting small businesses and craft sellers. A tough year for all, small businesses have been hit hard this year without as much capacity to cope as larger retailers. This was a good advert promoting small gifts and stocking fillers that many might otherwise turn to Amazon for. This will hopefully bring some new customers to the platform to help support small and local business.
8. M&S – This is M&S Christmas Food
How long can M&S use Fleetwood Mac’s Albatross instrumental and still have us drooling over food? Probably forever. This year they have added narration from the Queen to make it even better! Well, not the actual Queen but Olivia Colman from The Crown, which is the next best thing right? Although it’s a solid advert from M&S, it lacks originality so it doesn’t make it higher up our list.
7. TK Maxx – The Lil’ Goat
The surprise package this year comes from TK Maxx, not known for Christmas Ads but with online shopping being huge this year more than ever they’ve thrown their hat in the ring. Short and sweet and completely random their advert features a farmer letting his baby goat choose his own outfit…you have to watch it to understand. A creative effort from TK Maxx that gets our appreciation with a high ranking.
6. Tesco – No Naughty List
A very merry 2020 Christmas advert. Tesco looks to make light of a bad year by stating there is no naughty list as everyone has already been through enough. This good effort from Tesco lightens the mood as their campaign features a number of people expressing their guilt over buying too many toilet rolls, going on holiday, and not singing happy birthday while washing your hands. This wins the award for “most 2020 advert”.
5. Amazon – The Show Must Go On
Another ad that focuses on 2020 and is proving to be a very popular one. No fancy animation here but a very good theme that focuses on a young girl missing out on starring in her ballet performance due to it being canceled, we assume due to coronavirus. However, her sister helps out and gets the show to go on with the help of the local community, and of course an Amazon delivery. Despite the sneaky product placement, the ad ranks highly with us!
4. Disney – From Our Family to Yours
If you’re one of the largest companies in the world and have been producing blockbuster movies for decades, is it cheating to create your own Christmas advert? Probably yes. But it’s a fantastic effort nonetheless so it still features highly on our list this year. With Disney getting involved in the streaming wars through Disney+, they are really looking to expand their viewership over Christmas and its the perfect time to do it. A great ad featuring the story of a young girl’s love of Disney right through to her old age.
3. Coca Cola – Christmas Commercial 2020
One of the earliest Christmas adverts in memory is Coca-Cola’s iconic Holidays Are Coming red trucks. They have produced a new advert this year which features a dad trying to deliver a letter to Santa for his daughter to the north pole. The end of the ad sees him get a lift home from the Coca-Cola truck, to find his daughter only asked Santa to have her dad home for Christmas. It’s proved popular with people this year amassing over 4 million views already and we can see why!
2. McDonald’s – Inner Child
One of the surprise entries this year and possibly one of the most loved so far is the McDonald’s Christmas advert, which features a teenager that has grown out of Christmas traditions but changes his mind towards the end of the video. This has pulled at the heartstrings of the nation’s parents with many relating to their children growing out of old traditions. It has also been soundtracked by a fantastic acoustic rendition of the popular 80’s Alphaville song Forever Young, covered this year by Becky Hill which we thoroughly approve!
1. John Lewis – Give a Little Love
Is it surprising that John Lewis has topped the list? Not really. As much as people try to top them, they just seem to have the knack for Christmas adverts. Although this isn’t their best effort (Monty the Penguin in 2014), their ads just feel like Christmas. This year’s effort has an array of different animation styles and a nice message about giving the gift of love.
Did we miss any ads? Don’t agree with our list? Get in touch with us and convince us why your favourite ad should’ve been higher. I doubt you’ll change our minds.