Kevin the Carrot is 2019’s ‘Greatest Showman’, as UK viewers rate Aldi’s Amazing Christmas Show the most powerful Christmas TV ad of the year

Aldi’s Amazing Christmas Show is the most powerful ad of Christmas 2019, according to Kantar’s annual research into which festive TV advertising campaigns work best with viewers. Kantar, the world’s leading data, insights and consulting firm, tested 19 ads with almost 3,000 consumers using its LinkNow ad testing service. LinkNow tests ads against seven factors that drive short-term sales and long-term growth: enjoyment, involvement (grabs attention), expressiveness (makes us feel emotion), branding, persuasive (makes us want to buy), meaningful (creates love) and different. Facial coding from Affectiva also captured how viewers engaged emotionally with each ad. 

Aldi’s campaign taps into a movie phenomenon and its much-loved soundtrack to tell another entertaining story about Kevin the Carrot. Viewers rated it highest overall across the seven ‘ingredients’ that make an ad effective. ‘Amazing Christmas Show’ is this year’s most ‘different’ and ‘emotional’ ad, and is among the top performers on ‘enjoyable’, ‘attention-grabbing’, and ability to create love for the brand.  

The eagerly anticipated ‘Excitable Edgar’ from John Lewis & Partners is the most enjoyable ad of 2019. Viewers also felt it celebrates the joy of Christmas more than any other spot. The ad reinforces the message that John Lewis has stood behind since 2007: you’ll find the perfect gift here, no matter who you need to buy for. This loveable and engaging story about true friendship and inclusivity is wrapped up in the excitement and magic of Christmas. Aldi’s ad is the second most enjoyable, followed by Asda’s Let’s Make Christmas Extra Special and Very’s Get More out of Giving.  

The ad that generates most love for the brand behind it is Walkers’ ‘Too Good To Share’. This combines a very popular song, a glamorous celebrity and a dash of good humour. It is very consistent for the brand, building on the original campaign featuring Gary Lineker, and the message that its crisps are so irresistible even the nicest person will turn mean to get their hands on them. It has Walkers’ cheeky tone of voice, and the product is well woven into the story. Aldi was rated second highest on ‘love’, with Amazon’s ‘Everybody Needs Somebody’ third.  

In 2018 consumers responded most positively to ads that told realistic, simpler stories. This year sees a swing back to those that bring to life the magic of Christmas and contribute to feelings of excitement, joy and anticipation. Many use music to influence what we feel, capture our attention, and awaken ‘Christmassy’ feeling and memories. Lynne Deason, Kantar UK’s Head of Creative Excellence, says: “To create advertising that really resonates with consumers, brands must understand what we’re thinking and feeling. Many are making a very deliberate effort to lift our spirits this year. They’re earning attention by taking us on a dramatic emotional journey, using entertaining, cinematic stories that bring a magical sparkle and – hopefully – leave us feeling good. This year, lost joy will mean lost sales.”