M&S's clothing and home Xmas activity to include targeted online and radio ads

Holly Willoughby will star in the campaign.

Willoughby: will front online ads
Willoughby: will front online ads

Marks & Spencer's clothing and home Christmas activity will include an online video campaign fronted by Holly Willoughby and a radio campaign tailored to different regions across the UK.

"It's on" is designed to put the spotlight on "fun Christmas moments", the retailer explained, such as matching pyjamas or putting on a sequin top.

The video executions each open with Willoughby saying "Christmas: it's on" to the camera, while Blondie's One way or another plays. There are 10 different versions, each of which cuts together clips profiling different products from the range - some featuring Willoughby and some other people. Individual users will be shown the version most to them, based on their search data.

The brand pointed to IAB research that found that online video consumption has increased by 40% year on year, and video-on-demand is up 38% during lockdown, so it will be using Finecast to help target people on these platforms.

The digital videos will also run across social media, with a big focus on YouTube pre-roll.

For the radio activity, it is the first time that M&S has tailored its ads with location callouts, regional accents and turns of phrase.

To back up its investment in this area, M&S highlighted Radiocentre data that shows that 38% of commercial radio listeners increased their consumption during lockdown.

Campaign reported last week that the brand has opted not to run a Christmas ad on TV for its clothing and home division this year. It follows a tough year for brands because of the financial downturn caused by the coronavirus crisis.

Nathan Ansell, M&S's clothing and home marketing director, said: "Whilst Christmas may feel different this year, we know our customers want to make it special for the ones they love, and that spirit is at the heart of our campaign.

"We're utilising a range of channels to reach our customers and with a digital media focus our aim is to tap into customers as they're in a 'scrolling and shopping' mindset, inspiring them with festive gifts for all the family."