Christmas 2021 Advertising Trends – Is Authenticity Still King with Consumers?


The holiday season is drawing near, and the Christmas advertising extravaganza will soon be upon us.  Following last year’s lockdown Christmas, we’re all ready for, and certainly deserve, some good ol’ festive cheer.  John Lewis has just announced that they’re giving viewers an early Christmas present as their latest festive advert is set to hit our screens around two weeks earlier than usual.  Bring on the bubbles…


An authentic creative brief

With the effects of the pandemic still being felt, global supply chain problems, skills shortages, and tough economic circumstances still making their presence known, brands continue to see success with user-generated video (UGV) strategies which tap into a real desire for human connection, as well as being more cost efficient to produce.

But a word of warning!  Let’s not make the same mistakes as last year. Who can forget, of course, the ill-fated Sainsbury’s Christmas advertising campaign which once again brought to the foreground the importance of authenticity in advertising.

Whether it’s highly credible ad messaging, using real people instead of actors or raising awareness of the issues impacting audiences, consumers more than ever value brands that ‘keep it real’.  Brands in turn have therefore requested that their agencies get more innovative and more creative with their Christmas advertising campaigns this year.  



Heartwarming Christmas Videos

Keep it real this Christmas

The particular skill of the best ad agencies is to spot a style or a cultural trend in creative media and appropriate it to promote their client’s brand or service.  As we saw with Sainsbury’s appropriation of UGV.  But sadly this ‘homage’ was less ‘sincere form of flattery’ and more ‘rip-off’. It was not well received despite being a heart-warming Christmas advert. Why?  Because raw, genuine, honest UGV touches hearts and minds in a way artful mimicry never can, and more importantly it’s what consumers want.  

If your desire for the ‘real’ is genuine, don’t ask your advertising agency to artificially construct ‘authentic scenarios’.  Better to act with a greater sense of integrity and honesty and use genuine UGV as opposed to mimicking a UGV style.  Consumers are even more savvy this year and hold little tolerance for brands that pretend to be genuine.  



Christmas 2021 Videos

Create the real deal with Newsflare

I truly believe the best adverts this Christmas, and indeed into 2022, will come from the highly creative minds of everyday people.  Brands and agencies don’t need to mimic, storyboard or direct the action, they just need to tap into the limitless energy of content creators. Don’t copy creators; just reach out and they’ll deliver you something original, authentic, and emotionally-compelling – ‘real’ moments of advertising gold.  

Contact Newsflare today to find out how we can crowdsource the content you need to make your next viral Christmas ad, before you spend all your budget on creating something less authentic.

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