A big question mark has been hanging over the 2020 Christmas ad season for months.
Would brands dial down the glitz and glamour, opting for smaller productions to reflect our straightened times? Would it be insensitive to shoot a blockbuster ad campaign when staff are being made redundant in their thousands?
What would be the right tone to strike and how would brands even know with customer sentiment changing by the day? With all the obstacles in the way, would they even bother at all?
The answer, of course, is yes. Moving on from the Zoom-style ads of the first lockdown, brands are out in force for Christmas 2020 rather than pulling back as some feared.
Riffing off a ‘Christmas with a conscience’ narrative, retailers are using the festive season to switch away from practical messaging about social distancing in an attempt to – as Waitrose executive director James Bailey puts it - “leave a lasting legacy”.