Cannes Lions

How Currys PC World found its voice at Christmas

AMVBBDO, London / DIXONS / 2017







This paper tells the story of how a brand, hitherto unknown in Christmas advertising, made it to the top of the advertising charts with an award-winning, fame-driving campaign.

It’s the story of how we created an integrated campaign spanning the category purchase journey, with a fresh, tradition-busting insight around families and Christmas-time.

It’s about how we realised that we needed to craft our own path to success, with a campaign which was unmistakeably Currys PC World.

Ultimately though, it’s about how we captured the Christmas conversation and managed to win Commercial of the Year at the British Arrows, winning more arrows than any other commercial in UK history.

In 2015, we realised that Christmas was such an important sales-driving time of year, that we couldn’t waste the opportunity to capture the UK’s attention and earn some of their festive spend for ourselves.

Despite tough market competition and a decreasing media spend, we unearthed a unique way to make our mark on the Christmas advertising scene, something we’d not previously attempted.

Our objectives were to:

1. Drive brand preference at Christmas by demonstrating empathy and assistance

2. Create a famous, involving campaign that would deliver earned reach to compensate for reduced spend

3. Drive sales and profit returns during the crucial peak trading period

Despite the considerable risk that the public wouldn’t appreciate a brand poking fun at sacred family rituals of Christmas, we planned and executed an award-winning integrated campaign driving up brand preference and retail sales.

The incremental retail sales value reached £25.8 million, working out at £5.01 incremental retail sales value for every £1 spent.

Our parent company, Dixons Carphone, reported overall group sales up 5% year on year for the peak period and record profit figures (driven largely by strong peak trading) of circa £450m for the year as a whole.

We defied the saccharine Christmas norm, creating our own ‘Super Bowl’ moment and winning industry acclaim for our advertising.

Sources: Blue 449, Millward Brown & Gain Theory econometrics.

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