Here is our round up of the news stories and industry articles that caught our eye during December.

The best marketing campaigns of 2021

Marketing Week choose 8 of their top campaigns of 2021.

Read part 1 of the article here.

Read part 2 of the article here.

December 2021 News Roundup

John Lewis launches £1m fund for projects that “rethink waste”

John Lewis Partnership has established a £1 million fund in the hope of supporting projects that could speed the shift to a circular economy.

In partnership with environmental charity Hubbub, the Circular Future Fund seeks to support a variety of projects which “rethink waste”.

“We’re hoping to unearth some of the world’s leading innovators, who have built their business models, products and services around the concept of circularity,” John Lewis Partnership director of ethics and sustainability Marija Rompani says.

Read the article in Design Week.

December 2021 News Roundup

Visit Sweden campaign reveals the tourism gems behind Ikea product names

Ikea has gifted the simplicity of Swedish design to the world, yet, as a witty new ad campaign points out, the choice of names for its products may be doing its home country something of a disservice.

Created by ad agency Forsman & Bodenfors, the Discover the Originals campaign reveals that the names of many Ikea products – which the world has long struggled to pronounce – are named after real places in Sweden. It then encourages tourists to visit these tourism spots.

Read the article in Creative Review.

Digital artist Claudia Rafael on painting with code

“I’m always into using these tools in an emancipist way, and not abusing them,” says Claudia Rafael, whose visual practice nowadays is built around technologies like AI and AR. The Berlin-based digital artist and art director cites how AI can be employed to anticipate health conditions, but recognises how the fields she is interested in have more harmful or even malicious applications.

“When we talk about medical stuff, [AI] knows two weeks before that a person might get a stroke – so artificial intelligence can save lives. This would be an emancipist way [of using the technology]. And of course, you can abuse artificial intelligence and do deepfakes and fake news and stuff like this, so this is why it’s very important to be always critical with these new tools,” she says. “But it’s also very beautiful what new possibilities are coming up in terms of filters.”

Read the article in Creative Review.

Aldi crowned this year’s most effective Christmas ad

Aldi’s Christmas campaign has been rated as the most effective festive ad of the year, pipping Coca-Cola, Lidl, and M&S to the post.

According to research by Kantar, the discount supermarket’s reimagining of Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’, featuring Kevin the Carrot and new character Ebanana Scrooge, is the Christmas ad most likely to deliver on long and short term measures this year.

Combining 3,600 consumer survey responses with facial recognition AI technology, the research saw Aldi rank top of 24 tested ads on four of five key measures, named the most ‘festive’, the most ‘enjoyable’, the most ‘distinctive’, and the most ‘meaningful’. The latter is a measure of how likely the ad is to build affinity or brand love.

Read the article in Marketing Week.

Tesco’s Christmas ad cleared of causing ‘widespread offence’

With more than 5,000 complaints, Tesco’s Christmas ad is the most complained about of the year, but the Advertising Standards Authority has ruled it is not “irresponsible” so will not be taking further action.

Tesco’s Christmas ad featuring Santa flashing his Covid passport at border control has been cleared of breaking any rules by the advertising watchdog, despite receiving more than 5,000 complaints.

The majority of complainants took issue with the scene in which Father Christmas proves he is vaccinated, as they believed it could be viewed as “coercive” and encourage “medical discrimination”.

Read the article in Marketing Week.