New Co-op 'Christmas' ad slammed

The Co-op's big summer TV ad - an irony-laden, tongue-in-cheek number featuring Andy Williams' The Most Wonderful Time of the Year soundtrack - has gone down so poorly with Co-op employees that they are blasting it on Facebook.

Chucking snowballs around a garden in soaring temperatures isn't that funny, they say. Hanging stockings on a garden trellis? Um... %VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%

Love it, hate it

For ad-land, the divided response is plenty of free publicity. "Love it or hate it, our latest ad has certainly got people talking," the Co-op's marketing head, Helen Nunn, told the Guardian, "but, judging from our scorching sales over the Wimbledon weekend, the Andy Williams soundtrack isn't putting people off shopping with us."

The summer BBQ ad was created by agency Leo Burnett. Christmas imagery is all over it, with sandpit angels and a couple kissing over a sprig of something green - rocket probably. However the Co-op has taken some criticism to heart, cutting the amount of time the Williams soundtrack is played in stores.

"It's depressing enough as it is with Christmas stock coming in as earlier [sic] as it does without the music being rammed down our throats every other song," one member of staff was quoted in Marketing Week from the Co-op's Facebook page. "Get rid of the bloody Christmas song," said another post, "its driving us demented and sick of customers moaning about it."


Either way it's a an illustration of the sometimes loathsome power of advertising and the creativity, or its lack, when deploying client cash. Alternatively, you may have thought: "Wow, so creative! A Christmas song in July! Thanks Co-op for making my summer so magical!"

Let us know if the ad fills your Co-op trolley - or not. Meanwhile the Co-op Group remains under pressure in attempting to fill a £1.5bn capital black hole. An action group representing pensioners and some retail investors in Co-op bank bonds are now pushing for a rethink of the bank's rescue plan.

Seven of the craziest supermarket glitches
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New Co-op 'Christmas' ad slammed

One of the most popular glitches, was a wine deal at Tesco back in November 2012, where a series of offers clashed, leaving a bottle of £9.99 wine selling for £1.50.

The 'three wines for £10' deal apparently clashed with a '25% off when you buy six or more bottles' deal. The 25% was accidentally taken off the original price rather than the reduced one, leaving the wine at rock bottom prices. Deal-hunters cleared the shelves around the country.

Perhaps the most popular glitch from Tesco came in June 2011, when instead of taking £4 off the cost of a £20 case of beer, the supermarket accidentally started selling the cases for £4. The ensuring rush was nicknamed the 'beer stampede'.

Sadly not every supermarket pricing glitch comes with such a happy ending for consumers. In March last year the bargain-hunters thought their luck was in, when Tesco accidentally priced the new iPad at just £44.99 instead of around £650. Sadly it spotted the mistake before shipping the goods. The small print on its website meant it could refuse to sell at this price, and refund their customers instead.

In September 2012, Asda was responsible for one of the most expensive glitches. The Asda Price Guarantee offered vouchers to customers who could have got their shopping cheaper elsewhere.

However, when certain trigger products were in the basket, the supermarket massively under-priced the shopping at other supermarkets, and offered huge vouchers to shoppers. In many instances the vouchers came to roughly the same as the cost of the shopping.

In April, a mistake on their website resulted in Tesco selling 8 packs of Bulmers cider 568ml bottles for £5 - rather than a six pack for £8.

Deal-hunters snapped up the deal online, and had varying degrees of success. Some had their order delivered in full, others had six delivered for £5 - and were able to negotiate their way to another two, while others were offered six for £5 or their money back.

October last year saw one of the most famous glitches, when Tesco Terry's Chocolate Oranges were subject to two deals at the same time, and the price dropped from £2.75 to 29p. There were plenty of people getting chocolate oranges last Christmas.

A buy-one-get-one-free deal went awry at Tesco in March. People putting four tubs of I can't Believe It's Not Butter or Oykos yogurt packs into the trolley were only being charged for one.

Soon the online deal-hunting community was in action, with one person bagging 50 tubs of butter and 22 pots of yogurt for £8.79 - a saving of £133.89.


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