Christmas is the blockbuster season for TV commercials. Brands go above and beyond to grab your attention in the hopes of grabbing your holiday gift money. Although commercials can be an annoyance, there are definitely some gems in the mix. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite holiday commercials of 2017 for your enjoyment. Read on to learn why we think these ads stand out from the pack.
Lego, “Shake Up Imagination”
These days it seems like every child has an iPad permanently glued to their hands. With all of the technological offerings in toys and games for kids, it’s impressive that Lego has remained a key part of the childhood experience. This ad is a testament to the enduring power of Legos — the little boy who exclaims, “Lego bricks!” is so in awe, he sounds practically reverent. And he didn’t even need to see the Legos, proving that Lego is so beloved that the sound alone can instill excitement in a child. The genius here is seeing kids be thrilled about a toy that’s so simple — and one that doesn’t involve a screen. As they excitedly plan what they want to build before the gift is even unwrapped, Lego proves that childhood imagination is still alive and well.
Amazon is undoubtedly the ruling retailer of the holiday season (or any season, for that matter), but they lack the personal touch and genuine connection that smaller businesses can provide. Amazon’s “Give” ad is a brilliant tactic for adding warmth to their brand. What makes this ad so exceptional is that Amazon never denies their true nature. They allow the spot to take place in the large, industrial distribution centers and delivery trucks stuffed to the gills with boxes, as we expect from Amazon. The boxes, however, like to sing. Rather than seeing the cold, systemized giant at work, we see each package as a little piece of love we can send to those we care about. Amazon attempts to relieve a bit of your “shop small” anxiety here — maybe you didn’t buy local, but hey, Amazon isn’t so bad.
When you think Lexus, you think luxury. That’s why Lexus’s “inner child” holiday commercials are so refreshing — they ditch sleek in favor of silly. Everyone remembers freaking out over a certain toy they were gifted as a child, and Lexus captures that magic here, reminding us that Christmas giddiness is still within reach. The toy has just gotten a bit bigger, that’s all. And perhaps a tad more expensive.
eBay, “Don’t Shop Like Everybody Else”
At some point in time, we’ve all been lazy holiday shoppers. Whether it’s asking for an exact link to the desired gift, printing a picture of the item that didn’t ship in time, or just giving up and going for a gift card, we’ve all been there. eBay’s “Don’t Shop Like Everybody Else” series calls us out on it, playfully mocking these less-than-ideal gifting scenarios and ensuring us that spending a little time on eBay will relieve our holiday shopping woes. The ads encourage us to laugh at ourselves, and everyone loves being in on the joke.
HP, “Create Wonder in Your World”
Cheesy, heartfelt holiday ads generally don’t appeal to me. The structure always seems the same — no dialogue, sweet music, the child who teaches the adult about the magic of Christmas through their innocent generosity. But HP’s “Create Wonder in Your World” is an exception. Perhaps the spot works because it’s so fantastical. Most touching holiday ads encourage us to believe the sweet moment is possible in our actual lives, like maybe our kid really will spend weeks looking for the perfect gift for us (or whatever else the ad is peddling). HP’s ad is more like a lovely little short film, giving us just the right amount of fantasy. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t get a few goosebumps when it all came together.
Tile, “Lost Panda”
Ok, so technically this isn’t a holiday ad...but it came out in November! And there’s some snow in it! Plus it’s about a toy! We’re saying it counts.
What is it about anthropomorphized toys that just gets to us? Tile’s “Lost Panda” ad is borderline heartbreaking. For a product that I think of as something to help me find my car keys, the emotional depth in this ad is incredible. It’s nostalgic, it’s beautiful, and most importantly, it got me thinking that perhaps a Tile is a better buy than I originally thought. Anyone know if I can put one on my dog’s collar?