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M&S to drop its fashion TV campaign this Christmas

Gaelle Walker
29 October 2020

Marks & Spencer is reported to have dropped TV advertising for its fashion department this Christmas. 

According to Campaign, M&S has planned some online and influencer activity to support clothing and homewares, but food will be its primary marketing focus for the festive season, with a new TV advert set to hit screens in the coming weeks.

The halt in TV activity signalled “a shift in M&S’s marketing strategy to boost its long-troubled clothing and home business, which has been further damaged this year by the impact of Covid-19,” Campaign said.

M&S has run two different Christmas campaigns – one for food and one for clothing and home – since 2018, with last year’s “Go Jumpers” Christmas advert boosting the sale of jumpers across womenswear and menswear by 6% and 7% respectively.

M&S’s decision comes amid news that brands are expected to slash advertising spend in the run up to Christmas as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak.

The final quarter of this year, traditionally the Golden Quarter for retail and ad-spend because of the Christmas Advertising season, is set to see a 10.5% drop to a total of £6.2bn some £724m lower than the previous year, according to the Advertising Association.

The latest industry data also shows that UK ad-spend fell by 33.8% in the second quarter of 2020 at the height of the nation’s lockdown.

This was the worst ever quarter recorded for the UK’s advertising industry and contributed to a 14.9% dip over the first half of the year, equating to a loss of £2bn when compared to the same period in 2019, the Advertising Association added.

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