Adverting and marketing is a complex game for any business. Christmas advertising is a whole new level of difficulty. For many, Christmas adverts are a form of entertainment to be scrutinised, whether they’re in the form of TV adverts, printed posters, or billboards. Miss the mark and you risk being labelled as a contributor of a ruined Christmas.
But a successful Christmas marketing campaign can not only become an intrinsic part of your brand’s identity, it can also create fantastic ROI. In the world of TV adverts, the three main contenders that spring to mind are John Lewis, Sainsburys, and Coca-Cola. These three experts of Christmas TV ads have often been hailed as the virtual ribbon-cutters announcing the official beginning of Christmas. This brings excitement, creativity, and customer anticipation to a brand; all-important ingredients to convert into sales.
Indeed, John Lewis has stated that their famous Christmas adverts are their most profitable ROI. But they’re also quick to note that the key element for success in those well-loved adverts is creativity. And creativity pays off hugely for brand building in the longer term, where short-term elements like social media “likes” might be a visual boost, but don’t often translate to brand-building success.
Successful Christmas marketing examples
The Christmas TV Advert Stand-Off
Every year it seems like titans of retail John Lewis and Sainsbury’s face off in order to see who can make the most people sob over its Christmas advert. Whether it’s the impossibly endearing child waiting all month not to open his presents, but to give them, or the bittersweet retelling of the most famous moment in the most awful of circumstances during World War I, it seems the pair are aiming to get as many sobbing emojis floating around their respective hashtags year after year.
Meanwhile, in the background, the Coca-Cola Christmas advert does essentially the same thing every year to nearly the same level of hype and anticipation.
So, what is it that makes a TV advert really successful? For John Lewis and Sainsbury’s, the creativity factor is there each year, but then the same excitement is generated by Coca-Cola for their very samey advert every Christmas. Arguably then, it’s less about the content and more about what it stands for — it’s almost like a TV broadcast alert that Christmas has begun. Even for those less-popular John Lewis adverts, they still generate the excitement, a whole load of views, and a decent ROI.
For a start-up, such a huge-scale event is likely out of reach for now, but the core lesson is very much at hand. As advertising expert Sir John Hegarty advises start-ups: “[Don’t] just build a business, create a brand.” The focus right now needs to be on building your brand image to the world.
And remember, you don’t need John Lewis’ £7 million Christmas advert budget to do it. This year, a £50 advert has gone viral and clocked 7 million views and counting, with people calling for the filmmaker to be hired by John Lewis.
Festive shop windows
Every year, it’s a Newcastle tradition to head to Northumberland Street to see the grand unveiling of the Fenwick’s Christmas Window. Each year the window display takes on a new theme, from Alice in Wonderland to The Snowman. The displays are vast, intricate, and oh-so-Christmassy. Like the TV adverts, for many Northerners this is the hallmark of the beginning of the festive season.
But with a little creativity, a little mischief, and presumably a lot less money, you can advertise to the same crowd Fenwick’s pulls in — as shown by the Greggs store opposite Fenwick’s.
Realising how many people had their backs to the Greggs shop to take photos of the glorious window opposite, the cheeky chaps at everyone’s favourite bakery installed a new sign with their logo in reverse. When festive Fenwick’s customers took photos of the Christmas Window, the Greggs logo appeared the right way around and ready to be share along to so many social media viewers when the photos were uploaded and shared!
The logo-flip alone isn’t Christmassy, but this is a genius way to get people talking and sharing a brand’s creativity over the winter season. And, of course, remembering to pick up a festive bake on the way home from Fenwick’s window…
Of course, any sort of winter advertising push needs a little extra money. It is wise, therefore, for start-ups to consider when throughout the year to push advertising. As Entrepreneur Europe points out, splitting your advertising budget evenly over twelve months sounds smart, but really, is ineffective — if you have a seasonal product, or you know Black Friday and Christmas will be huge for your brand, you should allocate more funds to advertising for this. Starting a little early can also get you a step ahead of the competition. However, be careful not to start too early and be forgotten closer to the time!
Entrepreneur Europe also advises start-ups to know their audience. Knowing the websites they visit, the magazines they read and so on will highlight exactly where you need to place your ads, whether you opt for an online presence or for digital printing (ideally, balance both offline and online methods!).
With the right approach and the right creativity, you will certainly see your brand build year-on-year as each festive season arrives!
Best Brands To Wear To The Club
Going to the club is one of the best opportunities for people to wear their favorite brands and this is important because the brands a person chooses can speak volumes about their character. For this reason, people consider their brands carefully and why we have developed our own list for the best brands to wear to the club.
1. Calvin Klein
Many people consider Calvin Klein to be a go-to when it comes to nightlife brands for both men and women as the company specializes in apparel for both. Not only that, but the brand also has a certain process for quality and excellence that only it is known for. Wearing anything from this brand can guarantee confidence to a person that they are at least wearing a brand that is respected by many in the fashion industry. A little cigar is an essential when you go to the club.
2. Ralph Lauren
Another worldwide favorite, Ralph Lauren is known for its attention to quality and detail. Also producing quality clothing for both men and women, the brand is known to be the industry standard when it comes to luxury and so this is another brand that a person can feel exceptionally confident in when wearing to the club.
Known for their innovation in fashion around the entire world, Versace delivers a diverse element to the fashion scene with its lack of confine to the standard principles of fashion. The brand is known specifically for going beyond traditional means and bounds while at the same time remaining among the most well respected brands in the industry of fashion and also making it another brand that is suitable for any club occasion.
Another brand known for their unique branding, Lacoste is a French based organization that produces some of the highest quality clothing in the market today. This brand is also likely to attract recognition from anyone who is familiar with the fashion industry which is why this brand is certainly on the last.
The combination of these names are likely to be among the best known in fashion, but you don’t have to take our word for it. Many people know these brands by name just like they know Little Cigars to be among the best in the cigars industry. These are qualities that cannot be mimicked an instead have to be earned in the eyes of consumers.
Best BBQ Places In The South
There are many BBQ places in the South, but only few have what it takes to be considered among the best. The following is a list of 5 that are sure to be on the list and the reasons why.
1. Southern Soul Barbeque – St. Simons Island, Georgia
This famous gas station turned barbeque is the iconic southern BBQ location with its location right on the Southern Georgia beach. The destination for many BBQ fans, they are legends when it comes to their BBQ in terms of flavor and delivery. I always make sure to keep a little Montgomery Inn BBQ Sauce with me just incase.
2. Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q – Atlanta, Georgia
This one more inland in the city of Atlanta, the Fox Bros. are established masters in their art of southern BBQ with one of the most renowned flavors and recipes in BBQ dating as far back as 1958. With so much history and experience, it is not surprising to see the Fox Bros. on any list that discusses some of the top places for southern BBQ.
3. Lexington Barbecue, Lexington, North Carolina
Known for their famous Lexington Dip recipe, this unique southern BBQ location has earned the nickname of Honeymonk when it opened in honor of Wane Monk in 1962. SInce then, the place has worked to uphold a great reputation for its BBQ that has earned it the respect of many southern BBQ fans across the entire country.
4. Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q, Decatur, Alabama
This authentic southern BBQ location was built by hand in 1925 by a railroad worker who began serving it to people around them and the process has been going since. Such a long history and authentic beginning make this place the true definition of Southern BBQ
5. The Salt Lick BBQ; Driftwood Texas
Texas is unique in its BBQ and the particular recipes they use but their unique qualities have still found their way into the hearts of many Southern BBQ fans. With three generations of BBQ to support the foundation of this place, there are many reasons why the Salt Lick BBQ can be considered one of the most authentic and quality southern BBQ places that exists.
Each BBQ has its own unique qualities and attributes that makes it special and no BBQ goes well without the proper type of BBQ sauce.
The Different Types of BBQ
There are several different types of BBQ but the following are the main types of BBQ that are considered to be the most common and authentic. With any BBQ however, there is no sauce that goes better with the American Classic BBQs than Montgomery Inn BBQ Sauce.
The Eastern North Carolina Vinegar Sauce uses an apple cider vinegar mixture with brown sugar, cayenne pepper and crushed red pepper flakes giving it a traditional BBQ flavor mix between tangy and spicy.
The Lexington-Style Dip uses the same vinegar base but mixes in black and white peppers and ketchup as the base for the BBQ.
The South Carolina Style Mustard Sauce is made with a mustard base mixed with honey and vinegar as well as ketchup, brown sugar, worcestershire sauce as well as hot sauce and a modest amount of melted butter, all of which give it a more dashing flavor unlike any other.
The Texas Style Mop or Basting Sauce is a unique BBQ recipe that combines the flavor of beer with oil and vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, minced chile and crushed peppers and garlic with a dash of thyme. These elements provide it with a authentic southern Texas flavor that cannot be mimicked.
Kansas City Style Sauce is unique in that it combines the tomato flavor of ketchup and tomato sauce with unsulfured molasses as well as hickory flavored liquid smoke. The addition of sugar and red wine vinegar and garlic gives this BBQ flavor a taste that’s guaranteed to keep people wanting more.
Alabama White Sauce BBQ is perhaps one of the most unique of the recipes as it combines mayonnaise with creole mustard and horseradish as well as garlic, black pepper, vinegar, salt and paprika. The combination of these sharp flavors gives it one of the most powerful BBQ flavors among any and so it is important that a person is prepared for it before the try it.
With any good BBQ – there is no sauce that works better than Montgomery Inn BBQ Sauce. With a recipe dating as far back as 1951, this legendary brand of BBQ sauce is known for its exceptional quality and taste that is guaranteed to be a classic fit with any authentic American BBQ.
4 Must Haves for Your New Apartment
Moving into a new place can be exciting depending on your previous living situation. If you were living with your parents or in another situation where you really don’t have much to start with then this will be a great guide.
The first food shopping trip can be extremely intense. You are getting all of the essentials plus regular food which really adds up. Buying some bags of bulk candy will really come in handy for those late night cravings. Besides for that you should consider getting all of the necessary condiments. Nothing fancy is rally needed at this time. Most likely you are going to have to go back the next day to get the second round of stuff anyway.
When it comes to bedroom furniture this is important because most of the time you spend at your new place is likely going to be in your bedroom. There are many great sites to get secondhand stuff like Offer Up or you can go to ikea for something new. When I moved into my first place, I basically bought most of my second hand. Of course, when it comes to sheets and towels you will want to buy it new, but this is in regards to the furniture in your bedroom.
A Decent Smart TV
Over the past ten years televisions have been getting cheaper and cheaper. It used to be that a fifty-inch smart tv could cost as much as a thousand dollars. Now you can find stuff in the three to four-hundred-dollar range. Smart tv’s are a must have if you want to be able to watch prime, Netflix or even just search the internet.
It is really disappointing to realize that you do not have the right amount of lights in your place. Sometimes it has to do with the quality of the lightbulb you decide to use but the quantity can also be an issue as well. You can find affordable lightbulbs and lamps on amazon. That is probably going to be where you get most of your stuff. A plus to that is if you have storage then you can save all of those boxes for the next move since now you are going to have a ton of stuff.
Good luck in your new place!
How to Enjoy Those Frigid Winter Weekends
If you are like me and living in an area where it does not make sense to go outside unless absolutely necessary then you are going to have to find ways to enjoy yourself indoors. There is another few months left of winter so I am sure you have already made your way through a few seasons of the office but that does not mean that you cannot start being productive.
Organize your house
It is really satisfying to organize everything in your house. Many people love to smoke pipe tobacco while they get everything done since to some, this is a boring activity. The reward of having your house the way you like it makes it all worth it in the end. If you are terrible at organizing, then you can watch a few videos on YouTube which can give tips. I am pretty sure that there is even a series on Netflix which features an organization expert going to messy houses and helping them tidy up.
If you are more of a thinker than someone who turns their house upside down then there are some awesome online chess groups. You sign up and play a few matches against others which allows them to find out your skill level so you can play against the right people. Otherwise it would either be too easy or way too hard.
Joining a bowling league is great if you have a few friends that love to bowl and drink beer. Bowling leagues can get serious but for the most part everyone is just there to have fun and enjoy each others presence. The demographic varies so widely so you will get to meet a vast range of people mixed with some beer and friendly competition. If you are a little unsure then go with your friends on an off night and figure out exactly where you guys stand when it comes to skill level.
Different Ways to do Things Cheaper
If you have certain habits where it is making a huge dent in your wallet then it is probably time to find a cheaper, alternative method. Many people go through life paying for something without ever knowing that there is a cheaper method that is just as satisfying whether you are a cigarette smoke, or you play certain sports with expensive equipment.
Rolling Your Own Cigarettes
Rolling your own cigarettes is ten fold cheaper than going to the store and buying a pack, or even a carton at a time. The average price per pack in the US costs anywhere from six to eight dollars. What if I told you that you could buy a cigarette rolling machine and your own tobacco for a fraction of the cost. You can roll a whole carton of cigarettes for twenty dollars or even less in some cases. Buying a cigarette rolling machine may save you the money you need to use for other things.
Buy Your Own Strings
If you are a tennis player then you are probably aware that strings do not come cheap at all. Sometimes it can cost up to fourty dollars to replace your strings each time they break. If you are a heavy hitter then it pays to just buy a whole roll of the strings that you need so you do not have to pay the marked up price of the pro shops strings. It’s even better if you buy your own stringing machine because then you can do things on your own time instead of having to wait days for something that only takes a half hour.
Many people are huge fans of vaping the juul pods. Depending on the city they are in it can cost up to thirty dollars for a pack of four. You can go online and buy empty juul pods and vape juice. For the cost of four juul pods you can literally have thirty of them.