It’s Showtime


It’s officially the countdown to Christmas as the TV channels in the UK all showcase their wares for Christmas.

Every year, the channels try to find ever more inventive ways of showcasing the vast array of content available. Last year, BBC One had a singing and dancing spectacular – and loads of Christmas Jumpers. And BBC Two had this wonderful animation.

This year, it’s down to a vast array of BBC One talent again – in a really nice concept called “It’s Showtime”. It’s down to Rob Brydon to gather together an all-star cast for the biggest show of the year. In the trail, we see stars like Mrs Brown and the cast of BBC One shows “Call the Midwife” and “Outnumbered” alongside some iconic stars of the channel (including the TARDIS and Del Boy’s van). There’s also people like David Walliams, Miranda Hart, Matt Smith, Lee Mack, Strictly Come Dancing’s Craig Revel Horwood, and the cast of EastEnders.

Here’s Part 1

And here’s Part 2

It’s a really fun concept – probably a nightmare to organise – which really shows the sense of fun that BBC One gathers together for Christmas. And nice to see it backed up with some great clip based trails too..

It’s good to see that the BBC can still surprise and entertain with all the distractions of the past few months. It was created by Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R and commissioned by Aoife Liyanage and the team at BBC Creative Marketing.

Consider Yourself One of Us – BBC 1 Christmas Trailer

What’s the best way to showcase the talent on your channel or station? Feature all of them in a trailer for your Christmas programming.

And that’s what BBC1 have done this year. You’ll be singing along..

BBC One’s Christmas 2011 trailer featuring Gregg Wallace, John Bishop, Gary Lineker, Len Goodman, Lee Mack, Guy Henry, Laila Rouass, Hugh Quarshie, Shane Richie, Shona McGarty, Ricky Norwood, Frank Skinner, Brendan O’Carroll, Tyger Drew-Honey, Ramona Marquez, Daniel Roche, Kevin Bridges, Sian Williams, Carol Kirkwood, Chris Hollins, Bill Turnbull, Matt Allwright, Lenny Henry, Tess Daly, Fiona Bruce, Alex Jones, Sunetra Sarker, Alexander Armstrong, Graham Norton, Julia Bradbury, Sir David Jason, Anne Robinson, John Torode, Nick Knowles, June Brown, Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Michael McIntyre and Sir Bruce Forsyth

What’s your Red Cup?

The Red Cups are about to return in Starbucks branches around the world.


For years, every Christmas, Starbucks have added the red Christmas Cups to their stores with a number of special Christmas flavours. Christmas music appears in the stores (they also sell the CDs) and it feels a little bit closer to winter. Over the past few days, the number of mentions of Red Cups in my Twitter feed has been increasing. I’ve noticed loads of video ads at Underground station telling me the Red Cups are Coming. There’s even a dedicated websitefor them counting down to the big day. It feels like Starbucks (just like Coke Christmas ads ) are doing their best to “own” Christmas.

In the UK, Smooth Radio have  again launched Smooth Radio Christmas – non stop Christmas songs and a great way to cross promote to Smooth Radio. I’m guessing the thinking is that people who don’t necessarily think that Smooth Radio is for them might like a Christmas station. Add in some cross promotion and hopefully gain some listeners.

Christmas stations are nothing new. There are loads online. Many AC format stations in the US flip format in November and December to do the same thing. In Denmark, Radio Soft – sister station to Radio 100 becomes all Christmas too.

But can Starbucks teach us anything about brand extensions?

The Red Cups work because they tie in with a specific time of the year where it’s easier to create a Mood. I’m not sure Starbucks summer cups would have the same effect.
With radio, it’s easier to do brand extension with musical decades (such as Absolute 80s and the like).

But whatever happens – in a crowded (coffee) market, the sight of the Red Cups instantly makes me think of Starbucks and Christmas.

So what’s your Red Cup moment?

Christmas Greetings – from Zagreb

Photo:James Stodd

This afternoon, this video popped into my inbox from one of my new European radio friends that I met at last month’s Broadcast Symposium in Nuremberg.

It’s a simple idea from Antene Zagreb

Take your on air talent. Put them in a room. And get them talking about Christmas. It’s a nice way of creating some connection with some of your on air talent and your listeners.  You could also take some of the audio and cut it into quick Christmas idents.

And whilst you’re doing it, get them to help create your Christmas Card – which you can film and then post on the website or maybe email to clients.

You didn’t do that? Maybe next year…