How banning Iceland’s advert boosted their brand

How banning Iceland’s advert boosted their brand
For many brands, their Christmas advert is the pinnacle of the advertising calendar. If that advert was banned from television it would be sensible to assume it’d be a devastating blow to a brand’s Christmas campaign. However, Iceland have managed to use their advert’s ban to their advantage. 

On November 9th, Iceland tweeted “You won’t see our Christmas advert on TV this year, because it was banned. But we want to share Rang-tan’s story with you… Will you help us share the story?” 

You may have seen their advert before, it was released by Greenpeace a few months ago. But Iceland have used it to highlight their stance on palm oil. 

The advert was blocked by ClearCast for being “overtly political.” An advertising disaster? Not for Iceland. 

Their original tweet has 90,215 re-tweets, 95,206 likes and 5,100 comments. 

It has been shared by James Corden, Stephen Fry, Bill Bailey and Paloma Faith. James Corden’s single tweet was viewed 13 million times. 

The story has been covered by The Guardian, the New York Times and the Telegraph. 

A petition to get ClearCast to reconsider their judgement has over 590,000 signatures

The video of the advert on YouTube has received over 3 million views. Their 2017 advert only drew 97,000 views by comparison.  

People have commented that Iceland knew the ad would be banned but marketing director Neil Hayes has denied this. 

“There’s some compensation is the fact that it’s gained a bit of momentum and people are watching it on social media. But I would still have loved to put it on primetime TV as our main ad,” 

Neil Hayes

What do you think about the advert?