Uncategorized

Festive campaigns that grabbed our attention

Festive campaigns that grabbed our attention
Photo by Brett Jordan from Pexels

The most wonderful time of the year is upon us, and it won’t be long before all our loved ones are crowded around a table heaving with festive food, as the fairy lights twinkle in the background. Along with the advent calendar chocolates and office Secret Santas, the Christmas season is a time when our TV screens are flooded with festive adverts.

From emotional stories which tug at our heartstrings to humorous scenes which make even the most cynical members of the household chuckle, Christmas campaigns have become something to look forward to as December rolls around each year.

Here are some festive campaigns that grabbed our attention.

Iceland’s campaign against the palm oil industry

Back in 2018, Iceland collaborated with Greenpeace on a campaign to raise awareness of deforestation being caused by the palm oil industry. The video featured a baby orangutan and the destruction of its habitat by palm oil farmers. Cuddly toy orangutans were sold by Iceland as part of the campaign and the proceeds from these went to Greenpeace.

Unfortunately, the advert was removed from TV by the regulatory body, after being deemed “too political”. However, Iceland persevered, showcasing the campaign through online channels, where it quickly went viral.

Google’s “Home Alone” Christmas advert

Celebrity appearances in Christmas adverts don’t always go down well. However, Google hit the nail on the head with their Home Alone-themed advert for the Google Home Assistant in 2018, by hiring Macaulay Culkin to reprise his role as Kevin McCallister, almost 30 years after the classic film was released.

The advert showed Culkin in the family mansion where the film takes place, interacting with a Google Home Assistant as he goes about his day as “Kevin”. Viewers were even treated to a few 90s flashbacks from the film for one final touch of nostalgia.

Aldi’s “Kevin the Carrot”

Bringing another Kevin to the forefront was supermarket giant Aldi with Kevin the Carrot, who has featured in Aldi’s Christmas campaigns for six consecutive years after being introduced in their 2016 festive advert.

The 2021 advert has not disappointed, with viewers crowning it their favourite Christmas ad. Aldi has continued the Kevin the Carrot theme across its marketing channels, from displaying posters in-store to selling soft toys in aid of the children’s charity Barnardo’s.

Coca Cola’s “Holidays Are Coming”

Coca Cola are known for taking the cake when it comes to Christmas campaigns, and their “Holidays Are Coming” adverts have never failed to delight us since first launching in 2010. The adverts follow the same pattern year after year, and feature Santa Claus driving the renowned Coca Cola 4×4 lorry to announce the start of the Christmas season.

M&S Food’s “Percy’s First Christmas”

A firm favourite among Brits of all ages, Percy Pig sweets have been associated with M&S Food for nearly 30 years. Percy, voiced by Tom Holland, features as the main character in their Christmas advert this year, which is one of the biggest campaigns the brand has ever produced.

The advert begins with the store being closed for the evening, when the Christmas tree fairy, voiced by Dawn French, accidentally casts a spell which brings Percy to life. Percy goes on to explore the store and M&S Food’s Christmas specialities.

Uncategorized

5 Ways to Promote Your Small Business This Christmas

Ways to Promote Your Small Business This Chirstmas

Photo by Tim Douglas from Pexels

Some of you may know that aside from blogging and copywriting, I occasionaly do some marketing work too, and back in July I shared some ways that you can market your small business. With over 400,000 new companies launching during lockdown, it seemed like a good time to share some tips and now, with Christmas approaching (SORRY for mentioning the ‘C’ word in October!) I thought I’d give you some more targeted tips for helping your business to have a prosperous Christmas:

Point of Sale

Something that I’d advise many small businesses to invest in is some bespoke Christmas displays. This is especially important if you have a physical shopfront, and although you may be worried about the cost, it’s something that you’ll be able to use year after year. Having a professional display will really elevate your Christmas promotions and will look So much more inviting that just have strands of tinsel strewn about!

Send a Card

If you’re the type of business that holds address information for your clients, there’s nothing quite like a Christmas card to spread some festive cheer (and tell them about your latest offers!). There are many approaches, from online services which will send them automatically to actually handwriting cards, which is time-consuming but gives a truly personal effect. You could even just send an e-card via email, if that’s easier.

Christmas Themed Packaging

We all know how important custom packaging is for your brand. Packaging is the only thing that reaches 100% of your customers and is the first step in creating a memorable unboxing experienceUnique Christmas packaging for your products over Christmas adds a touch of luxury and class and, if coupled with a Christmas edition product, can really help create a sense of ‘exclusivity’ around your product.

Support a Local Cause

By reaching out to those less fortunate than you, you can also create awareness of your own brand at the same time. There are loads of different ways you can support charities, and it should be something you consider doing year-round, rather than just at Christmas. You could inform customers that all proceeds made from a certain range of products goes to charity, or even host a charity event like a coffee morning or brunch and encourage customers to donate with you. Just make sure you send invites beforehand!

Reward Your Loyal Followers

Depending on your audience, you may find that your followers on social media are your most engaged customers and your best brand ambassadors. Why not thank them by having offers exclusive to social media platforms? Although digital coupons and coupon codes work best with online stores, brick-and-mortar businesses can still offer print-at-home coupons that are promoted exclusively on social media. An alternative for online businesses is to create a landing page with unique offers, and again only promote this on social media.

Uncategorized

How to Create a Luxury Bathroom

How to Create a Luxury Bathroom

Photo by Monstera from Pexels

When you live in a rented property with fairly basic or older ameneties, you really notice the difference when you go into a luxury bathroom which has had some cash splashed on it. It’s not always just the fixtures which make a bathroom feel like a luxurious space; sometimes there are little details that you might not even consider. Here are a few of the things that you can do to elevate the feel of your bathroom:

Fixtures

Okay, so I know I literally JUST said that it’s not all about the fixtures, and in terms of asthetics I do stand by that. There are plenty of budget bathroom suits out there which look pretty decent. However, if you want to give your luxury bathroom that hotel or spa feel, going for some high-end features like an Insignia Steam Shower will definitely give you an edge.

Towels

When it comes to towels, face cloths and even robes, the fluffier the better. If you’re going to splurge anywhere in your bathroom, update your towels and bath rug first. A soft, fluffy, neutral-colored towel goes a long way if you’re trying to turn your basic bathroom into a spa-like oasis. If neutral isn’t your bag, they’re also a good place to add a splash of colour.

Lighting

Basic bathrooms usually come with basic lighting, which is often way too bright and not very relaxing OR flattering. Think about not only your light fixtures but also the actual bulbs too. The fixtures and shades will dictate how the light is directed but opting for bulbs with a warmer glow will give the bathroom a much nicer feel without spending much at all.

Presentation

Consider your counter: are your beauty and hygiene supplies just strewn about randomly? If so, adding a few small trays can mean the difference between a mess and an artful arrangement. And don’t write off apothecary jars just because they’re a cliche! They’re a beautiful way to display the small but necessary items that often come in gaudy packaging (cotton balls, bamboo cotton buds) and can really amplify that luxury bathroom ambience.

Accessories

Bathrooms are often really starkl areas, made up of predominantly white or light coloured fixtures, walls and tiles and adding some personality might seem tricky. However, there’s absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t accessorise your bathroom to the max – in fact, we absolutely insist that you do! Plants are a fantastic addition to any bathroom, especially if you opt for varieties which love tropical, humid environments.

Uncategorized

4 Healthcare Checks Your Should Perform Regularly

Over the years, doctors have stressed the need for people to have regular medical check-ups to monitor their health. Regular screening by a specialist quarterly, twice, or annually should not be a daunting exercise. On the contrary, these can help an individual detect their risk of potential ailments for early treatments. A report by The Guardian suggests that between 50-80% of cardiovascular disease is preventable with early checks. With that said, these four checks should always feature on your medical to-do list.

  • Breast cancer 

Image Credit

Medical specialists concur that having regular breast screening is valuable in detecting breast cancer early and offers a better chance of survival. This means you are also less likely to undergo a mastectomy (removing the breast issues to treat cancer). However, chemotherapy will come as the best treatment if the cancer cells are detected early. Studies have shown that breast cancer treatment and the survival rate has improved substantially in the last four decades in the UK; about 600,000 individuals remain alive after early diagnosis, with the figure expected to rise to 1.2 million by 2030.

  • Check your heart rate

Your resting pulse before anything else gives a sign of your overall health. The regularity of  your heart rate depends on your age and fitness level. Get familiar with your normal heartbeat by checking every morning for seven days. Thankfully, technological innovations have presented everyday gadgets like smartphone applications, wellness trackers, or pulse screens for this purpose. A difference in 10 beats for every moment (bpm) or more may mean you are run down. Over 100 bpm could mean you are dehydrated, stressed, sick, or excited. Consult a specialist if you need expert advice on the matter.

  • Oral check-up

Frequently visiting the dentist is significant in maintaining healthy teeth and gums. During the dental examination, the specialist will check your general oral health for any areas that may require attention. A clean-up by your dental specialist will eliminate any tartar development and plaque and also clean your teeth thoroughly. In general, you should undergo a dental examination or check-up at least once a year, especially for those at increased risk. You can visit this website for more information on all your oral health-related issues.

  • Blood pressure 

Image Credit

Persons with high blood pressure are at significant risk of developing a heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, and heart failure. Most of these health conditions strike with no indications or warnings; therefore, it is essential to have your blood pressure regularly checked. Fortunately, this is an exercise that can be carried out at home without necessarily visiting the hospital. Blood pressure monitors are easy to use. Ensure you are in a calm climate when you do the test. Blood pressure between 90/60 and 120/80 mmHg in adults is regarded as usual. Anything higher means you must engage in activities like cutting back on your alcohol and salt intake while adopting healthy eating and an active lifestyle.

The famous saying “your health is wealth” is a significant indication of how important your health is. Just as you protect your finances, your health deserves such premium treatment to improve your quality of life.

Uncategorized

Alternatives to Toys for Christmas

I don’t know about you, but sometimes it feels like we’re drowning in toys. Sausage is older now, so her interests are changing but Sausage is still firmly in the “circle every toy in the Christmas cataogue” stage. This year, I’ve been trying to think of things that they would love for Christmas which won’t take up much (if any) space in the house, and I’ve had some decent ideas so far, which I thought I’d share with you today:

Swimming Lessons

BB has a pool at her school, but it’s outdoor which means they only swim between Easter and October and the rest of the year they don’t use the pool at all. I was thinking that BB would probably love to have swimming lessons and that her grandparents could club together and pay for her to have lessons for a year. There are some Seriously Fun swimming lessons for babies and children out there and I think it would make a great gift.

Zoo Experience

A couple of years back, Husband arranged for me to go to Wingham Wildlife park to have an up-close experience with the raccoons and coatis and it was genuinely one of the best presents I’ve ever received. I’ve been in love with raccoons for years and getting to feed them was just phenomenal. Both of our girls are animal mad and I think they’d be just as thrilled with a keeper experience as part of their Christmas present.

Subscription Box

One of the (very small) things that bugs me about Christmas is that you spend silly amounts of time and money buying specially selected gifts and by January, a lot of it has been used up or forgotten. A subscription box would last all year long, giving monthly surprises and you can get lots of different types, to suit every kid. Some of them even have experiements inside, making them low-key educational without the kids even realising that they’re learning as they go!

Magazine Subscription

Like a subscription box, a magazine subscription is the gift that keeps on giving. BB is a MASSIVE fan of magazines (usually for the plastic rubbish attached to the front!) but I think she’d be so happy to get her favourite magazine in the post every month. Magazines are also good because they help to give kids in interest in reading. Sausage is old enough to enjoy a much wider array of magazines now, too, like nature photography, crafting, colouring and even music.

Vouchers

My kids are both at an age now where they love getting cash or vouchers for Christmas and birthdays because it means that they can go to the shops and choose stuff for themselves. Sausage even has her own contactless debit card now, and she LOVES having mney in her account so she can use her card. There are a few shops that the kids love, where they can buy things like books and stationery so getting them vouchers would definitely be a hit – plus, I don’t mind finding space for books!