Boots signs comedians in festive strategy shift

Boots is overhauling its advertising for Christmas with a comedy campaign that it believes brings together health and beauty in one 'brand voice' for the first time.

The ads, described as ‘comedy vignettes’, mark the next stage in its three-year-old ‘Here come the girls’ campaign.

The 11 ads break tomorrow (Thursday) and will run until January. They feature five female comedians, who will appear throughout the campaign playing various characters in  sketches based on ‘real-life’ situations.

Each ad focuses on a different insight, such as ‘feigning interest when opening a present’ and ‘women soldiering on despite heavy colds, while their husbands rest up at home with man flu’. The ads will be seeded on YouTube after airing on TV.

Boots marketing director Elizabeth Fagan said the retailer had not previously created an ad style that worked equally well for both health and beauty.

‘For the first time we are speaking about one brand with one voice,’ she said. ‘A requirement for this campaign was that we made sure both had the same energy behind them. I feel we’ve achieved that.’

The campaign, created by Mother and Ric Cantor, director  of the BBC Three sketch show series Man Stroke Woman, will be adapted next year, potentially bringing in other comedians, but still based on insights into women’s lives.

‘The comedy sketches are intended to form a long-term campaign,’ said Fagan.

‘We will be rigorous in making sure [the insights] are genuine and we’re not just indulging for the sake of the comedy.’

Fagan admitted that axing the brand’s use of the ‘Here come the girls’ theme in its ads had been discussed, but said the song was now seen by many as its ‘brand anthem’.

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