Making the nation cry...and buy  (2012)

Grand Prix Winner
Gold award winner

Campaign: Making the nation cry...and buy
Brand: John Lewis
Client: John Lewis
Entrants: Adam & Eve, Manning Gottlieb OMD
Principal Authors: David Golding - Adam & Eve, Helen Weavers - Real World Planning, Paul Knight - MG OMD
Contributing Authors: Sam Veitch - BrandScience, Lesley Turnbull - BrandScience
Credited Companies: John Lewis - Client, Neuro-Insight - Research Agency, Blink Productions - Others, Millward Brown - Research Agency, Manning Gottlieb OMD - Media Agency


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In mid 2009 John Lewis was struggling in a very challenging financial climate. Recent advertising investment had been ineffective and a new approach was required. A bold decision to use highly emotional advertising, particularly on TV, generated a huge amount of interest in the brand which resulted in more visitors, coming more frequently who spent more money. The campaign generated £1074m of incremental sales and £261m of incremental profit in just over two years. Thousands of partners also benefited, as the profitability of John Lewis communications enhanced the annual bonus that they share.

Judge's Comments:

This campaign combined wonderfully emotive creativity with evident effectiveness to return the brand back to national treasure status. It demonstrates the power of acknowledging and rallying other audiences behind the brand, including employees and stakeholders, to really shift consumer behaviour and perceptions.