The most memorable holiday commercials of 2013


I can’t even pretend the holidays aren’t my favorite time of year. And it’s not just because of the obvious advantages like the great food, family time, Christmas carols, holiday shopping, snow and Christmas cookies, it’s also because the marketing that comes this time of year is enough to make any marketer sing, “joy to the world”.

With holiday marketing, brands can choose a number of avenues to get their holiday message to the masses, especially through online and television commercials. Videos not only reach a vast audience, but there’s something so special about brands telling a story through video, and when done the right way, brands have the ability to conjure various emotions in their audience. This year, my favorite holiday commercials fit into roughly three categories: humor, romance and heartwarming. Let’s take a look at these commercials:


One of my favorite holiday campaigns this year is Kmart’s Show Your Joe commercial.

Despite some controversy, the campaign certainly is clever, which is something Kmart does well. Remember their “Ship My Pants” commercial? Now that was funny! Humor is one of the most difficult marketing strategies to execute, but it can also be the most rewarding. And while some may not think good looking men ringing their, hmm, how should I put this – well their bells to the classic “Jingle Bell” tune in their boxers is funny, I would say the majority of viewers found this quite witty and entertaining.

I have also been enjoying the seemingly, somewhat script-free AT&T “It’s Not Complicated” commercials. While I’m sure there will be some others coming out soon, this Thanksgiving-themed spot is just too cute:


It’s the holiday season, and we know that means a bunch of romantic jewelry advertisements will be making their way across our television and computer screens. You should also prepare yourself for the classic car-with-a-red-bow-sitting-in-the-driveway spot. All I can say is, one day, these commercials will get old – but wait, aren’t they already?

And in case you didn’t know, every kiss begins with Kay…

All sass aside, I really do love how consistent Kay’s brand message is.  It translates very well into videos and commercials, and there’s something about awaiting the yearly Kay commercials because they always manage to put a new twist on their tag line.


A truly heartwarming spot, Kohls hit the nail on the head with this holiday commercial. After all, the holidays are (or at least should be) about giving to others.

Get out your tissues before watching this one…

For me, this is what the holidays are all about. And I’m sure I’m not alone when any spot with the elderly being treated with so much love and kindness gives me the chills.

Although this one won’t make you cry, the following commercial by British retailer John Lewis is a lovely story of two unlikely friends, who are met with an interesting dilemma this holiday season:

Lends a feeling of magic, doesn’t it?

While all of these commercials offer something different to their respective audiences, I think it’s clear that holiday marketing is about bringing people (and animals) together. Whether it’s through a song, dance, story or a gift, the holidays are about giving and brands work hard to create memorable ads that reflect this.

What are some of your favorite holiday commercials this year? Let us know in the comments below.

About The Author:Courtney Christman
Courtney Christman is a content marketing specialist at Mainstreethost, a Buffalo, NY digital marketing agency. Connect with Courtney: Twitter | Google+