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John Lewis 'Man on the Moon' Ad tugs on heart - and purse strings

By Vivian Hendriksz


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The gauntlet for best Christmas advert seems unlikely to be broken this year, as British department store John Lewis has once again managed to tap into viewer's sentiments together with creative agency Adam & EveDDB for it's 2015 Christmas advert 'The Man on the Moon.'

John Lewis wins over viewers hearts with 'Man on the Moon' 2015 Christmas advert

The advert, which reportedly cost 1 million pounds to make, tells the heart-warming tale of a young girl named Lily who is keen to send a Christmas present to an old man she's spies living on the moon through her telescope. The older man's solitude during the holiday season is palpable in the advert and for a good reason too as John Lewis partnered with UK charity Age UK to help raise awareness for the million elderly who go for up to a month without speaking to anyone. The British department store will be supporting the charity in a number of ways in the run up to Christmas, such as donating the profit of three selected products to Age UK and encouraging members of staff and shoppers to volunteer.

"Our Christmas advert is once again all about going the extra mile to give someone the perfect gift," commented Craig Inglis, director at John Lewis on the newest ad. "This year though, the story is told in a uniquely creative and engaging way as we see Lily, our heroine, go to great lengths to connect with the Man on the Moon. We hope it inspires people to find really special gifts for their loved ones and through our partnership with Age UK, raises awareness of the issue of loneliness amongst older people and encourages others to support in any way they can."

In addition to launching the advert, John Lewis has also developed a Man on the Moon app which uses augmented reality to help bring it's story to life. When a user points their smartphone at a Man on the Moon image, found on posters, shopping bags, click and collect boxes they are able to unlock a 3D interactive moon which shares daily facts and animations in the run up the Christmas. The app also features a game based on the Christmas campaign, in which the players has to avoid obstacles and collect power up to get their chosen object to the Man on the Moon.

Although John Lewis has managed to capture both the nations emotional sentiment as well as their spending favour, some viewers have criticize the retailer for spending so much on the advert (as well as the issue of there being no oxygen on the moon). In addition to spending 1 million pounds on the ad, the department store spend another 6 million pounds on developing the app and the rest of the campaign. However, this 7 million pound figure is no different from the amount the retailer spent on its Christmas campaign last year, which featured Monty the Penguin and was labelled to be much more 'engaging' than it's 2013 holiday campaign which featured an animated bear and hare.

In fact, Monty the Penguin advert in 2014 has been credited for the 4.8 percent increase in like-for-like sales in the five week run up to Christmas thanks to its emotional tale of a penguin in search of love. And it seems as if its latest ad is set to follow in its footstep. "John Lewis have rolled out another emotional tear jerker involving again a child as the central character to a rather clever Oasis soundtrack choice sung by a breathless Aurora; its what John Lewis do well or rather their advertising agency adam&eveddb," commented Daniel Todaro, managing director of field marketing agency Gekko.

"By creating a memorable message through its soundtrack, which most who have a child of that age and perhaps in the 90’s never dreamed of stepping into a John Lewis store, creates a connection across a wider demographic of existing and new shoppers which I suspect will work to generate revenue; the actual purpose of the ad." With the advert garnering close to ten million views on Youtube alone in 4 days, it seems very likely that the ad will deliver John Lewis a very happy Christmas indeed.

Christmas Campaign
John Lewis
man on the moon
monty the penguin