Lidl is highlighting the “freedom” its turkeys enjoy, as it uses its Christmas ad to once again talk up the quality of its food.
Serving as the first chapter of its Christmas campaign, the headline ad, created by TBWA, features shopper Debbie who previously tweeted her concerns that Lidl turkeys were kept in prisons.
However, Debbie is won over after being taken to a farm in Norfolk where Lidl free-range turkeys are treated to 20 acres of land and even fed apples by farmer Tony Kerry.
Having debuted during tonight’s (12 November) coveted The X Factor ad break, the campaign also marks the first time Lidl has done digital out-of-home, having released five-second teasers at London underground stations over the past few days.
Lidl’s UK marketing director Claire Farrant is confident the Turkey-heavy ad can give it an edge over rivals. She told Marketing Week: “Our customers overwhelmingly told us turkey was the most important Christmas food so we thought it made sense for it to be the next focus of Lidl Surprises.
“And Kerry is absolutely addicted to turkeys, he’s the king of turkeys, so we thought his passion would really show off our product quality.”
And – with perhaps a shot at rival Aldi – she added: “We didn’t want to do just another Christmas character but to tell a human story instead. That’s what will give us the edge this Christmas. There’s no need to try to emulate others as it is already such a convoluted marketplace.”
However, Lidl might put some viewers off their dinner, with one of the ad’s feathered friends later brought out fully cooked as the centrepiece of a Christmas dinner. “As a vegetarian myself, I was very conscious of that risk,” admitted Farrant.
“But during the consumer research the majority of respondents told us animal welfare and the Christmas shop should be of equal importance.”
She added: “Yes, there will always be the odd person that feels uncomfortable but that’s the same with any campaign. Turkey won’t be the only focus and another ad will focus on the production of another Christmas dinner staple. Our social media campaign will also highlight veggie alternatives.”
A successful evolution
Lidl evolved its Surprises campaign back in July based on internal research that revealed many Britons still consider its supply chain in a “derogatory way”. It wants the new ads to go after these “anti-advocates”.
July’s campaign highlighted the production of steak, mussels, strawberries, and broccoli, with Farrant revealing that sales of the four products have increased 4.5 times faster than Lidl’s other ranges over the past three months.
Farrant believes the sales rise proves the Lidl Surprises campaign is achieving an impressive ROI.
“Since July, we have attracted a substantial amount of new customers and we’re only three months in to the next phase. The Lidl Surprises campaign has had a real halo effect and will keep going so long as customers demand it. In non-food we still have a big story to tell,” she added.
“It was important that our Christmas campaign wasn’t an isolated event. It was a very deliberate decision. We want to talk about our low prices and high quality 12 months of the year.”