John Lewis launches Christmas ad celebrating tradition of eating and hosting together

John Lewis has launched its 2021 Christmas advertising campaign, with a two minute advert entitled ‘Unexpected Guest’. The advert is a joyful story of friendship, which celebrates the magic of Christmas moments experienced for the first time. We know our customers are more excited than ever for Christmas, craving joyful moments, togetherness and escapism as so many were unable to celebrate with loved ones last year.

Viewers are taken on a magical Christmas journey through the eyes of the lead characters, a young boy called Nathan and the space traveller, Skye. Nathan discovers and befriends Skye, who has landed in the woods beside his home. Their friendship develops as Nathan introduces Skye to many of his family’s festive traditions and brings them to life for her in the woods. They decorate the tree with fairy lights, celebrate the tradition of eating and hosting together, as he encourages her to try her first mince pie, and he also introduces her to the joy of thoughtful gifting by giving her his Christmas jumper. Through these shared moments, we see the magic of Christmas through the eyes of someone who has never experienced it before.

This year’s soundtrack to the advert is performed by Lola Young, a 20 year old singer-songwriter from South London. The track ‘Together in Electric Dreams’, originally released by Philip Oakey and Giorgio Moroder in 1984, was chosen as a celestial compliment to the advert.

 

Interactive marketing

This year, the story of the advert will be brought to life for customers in John Lewis’ ten Christmas Emporiums, where they will be able to get up close to Skye’s ship and create and share an interactive gif on social media.

The advert will also be easy to explore and shop on our website, all the products featured in the advert are from John Lewis, customers will be able to shop key scenes and make purchases directly from them.

As a first for this year, My John Lewis Members will also be able to interact with the advert – they will have exclusive access to a virtual experience on the app and website, ‘Unexpected Guest: The Experience’. Members will be able to take on the character of Nathan and explore the world of the advert through his eyes, discovering AR characters and downloadable prizes for children such as printable toys and activities. There will also be hidden characters from previous adverts waiting to be found.

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