John Lewis isn’t a retail store

John Lewis isn’t a retail store

John Lewis isn’t a retail store

Every year, we all wait in anticipation for the first signs of Christmas. I’m not talking about when the town lights go up, or when you first hear Mariah Carey on the radio. I am, of course, referring to the annual John Lewis Christmas advert.

Year after year, John Lewis and Partners offer us a tear-jerking, two-minute television spectacular, usually with a re-imagined pop song that lingers in the charts long after the last mince pie of the festive season has been eaten.

Nearly always accompanying these adverts is a flood of messages on twitter from critics, Christmas enthusiasts and John Lewis customers, all towards to the department store giant. However, these tweets are usually directed to the user ‘@johnlewis’, who is not the British chain, but is in fact a teacher in Blacksburg, Virginia.

The Real John Lewis has, every year, taken the Christmas increase of tweets in his stride and replied to the individuals that tagged him in their tweets instead of the retail store.

Twitter saw the irony and the humour in this Christmastime phenomenon, and for Christmas 2018, released an advert for their social media platform dedicated to the Real John Lewis.

At only one minute long it isn’t taking the cake for biggest production, but Twitter have utilised the festive fun and produced a wholesome, yuletide online advert that encourages people to ‘join the conversation, even if it’s by mistake’.

In a world where each December (or even earlier!) Christmas adverts have to be bigger and better than the last, it is nice to see that lower budget, simple story advertisements have us talking the most. It just goes to show that big budget doesn’t always yield better results. We won’t give the whole video away, so grab your hot chocolate and a mince pie and take a look at Twitter’s #NotARetailStore Christmas ad for the Real John Lewis.


As a fun exercise, I went around the room and asked the team here at Viva Towers what their favourite Christmas for 2018 advert is. Personally, I love the Coca-Cola ‘The Holidays are Coming’ advert as it’s when I know that Christmas truly has arrived.

Lisa W
The ‘Love is a Gift’ video that came off the back of this year’s John Lewis advert was amazing and made with a budget of just £50.

Hannah
I like the Tesco advert because it celebrates how different people ‘do’ Christmas and shows us there’s no right or wrong way to feel festive.

Lisa V
The Sainsbury’s advert has to be my favourite this year, mostly because of the kid who is dressed up like a plug, but it was definitely the most memorable.

Tony
Iceland’s orangutan advert caused a bit of a stir this year as it was banned by the ASA from being broadcast, but because of that it is probably one of the most talked about Christmas ads of 2018.

Nic Parkes | Junior Accounts Executive

2018-12-01T11:08:36+00:00 30th, November 2018|

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