Marks and Spencer has revealed its Christmas campaign, directed by Oscar-winning British director Tom Hooper and featuring a brand new character – Mrs Claus, the wife of Father Christmas. Christmas with Love is its most customer-centric campaign to date, with input from thousands of its 32 million customers across the UK to develop the star of their Christmas ad – Mrs Claus.
The ad premiered on Friday 11th November. It is also M&S’s most socially immersive campaign to date, launching in the first ad break of Gogglebox to more than three million viewers, alongside landing on YouTube, M&S’s website and to its five million Sparks members.
It tells the story of Jake, who’s spent the last year squabbling with his sister Anna. As Christmas approaches, Jake decides he wants to do something special for her. So he writes to Mrs Claus (played by British actor Janet McTeer) who helps him give the perfect present with love to Anna – red, glittery trainers. And Mrs Claus helps out in her own stylish way, flying from Lapland across London in her helicopter to get Anna’s present to her on Christmas morning. As she departs, it magically begins to snow, delivering a white Christmas for all to enjoy.
Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne, Executive Director of Customer, Marketing & M&S.com said: “Our Christmas with Love campaign is a brand new approach for M&S this year, one that has been created with our customers and for our customers, with their feedback at the heart of our strategy. Our ambition is for M&S’s customers across the nation to experience something special this festive season.
“Mrs Claus is the result of thousands of conversations that we had with our customers to understand what they want from M&S – which is warmth, empathy and a touch of humour presented in a modern and contemporary way. She epitomises the huge efforts our customers put in to making the festive season special and represents the love and togetherness that customers want to feel and see in abundance at Christmas.
“That’s why we’ve brought Mrs Claus and her world to life outside the ad in our most immersive and mobile Christmas experience yet. Across social, in store, mobile and online she’ll be there to help our customers with the build up to the big day by taking over our communication channels and surprising customers as they shop, ensuring that everyone will #LoveMrsClaus this year.”
Mrs Claus will be helping M&S make every moment special for its customers this Christmas. Living beyond the ad, she’ll open her world and point of view outside the TV ad – from social media takeovers featuring her own emoji and hashtag #LoveMrsClaus to offering outfit and gift inspiration on in store décor. M&S’s store teams will be getting involved by carrying out 15,000 acts of Mrs Claus kindness for customers, from free coffee for a Café regular to a party makeover for a customer in need of a pick-me-up.
Along with its media agency Mindshare, M&S has created an exclusive partnership with Channel 4 to launch the campaign. Following a week of co-branded teaser activity across the Channel 4 network and in social media, Mrs Claus will appear in a special ad break where she will officially kick off the festive season on the channel. A specially created spot narrated by David Mitchell will see Mrs Claus give seasonal style tips to Dawn O’Porter, Christmas decoration suggestions for Kirsty and Phil and festive food inspiration to Jimmy Doherty. This spot will launch as part of a break takeover alongside the M&S Christmas ad tonight, with more content to be released in the run up to Christmas on air and in social media.