By Suzanne Basra, Content & Internal Communications Manager at Ogilvy UK


Last week, Boots unveiled its Christmas campaign, ‘Get them something that says… you get them’, an idea which brings to life that magical feeling of giving or receiving a gift which really celebrates each person’s uniqueness.

The TVC was created by Ogilvy UK so we went behind the scenes with Ogilvy UK’s Deputy Executive Creative Director, Sam Cartmell, to find out more about the ad.

Tell us a bit about the story - what made you choose a mother and daughter for this year's festive spot?

Last Christmas, we told the touching story of two loving sisters with ‘Show them you know them’, so we were looking for a relationship that was equally powerful and important.

The different dimensions of a mother-daughter relationship are fascinating. Having three teenage daughters myself, I’ve been lucky enough to see first-hand just how loving, volatile and precious that can be. Sometimes when you become a teenager, that person you’ve loved unconditionally and never really questioned suddenly becomes a slight bump in the road.

We wanted to capture that unique relationship in in the Boots Christmas commercial. Mums are so amazing – it just felt a beautiful area to focus on at Christmas.

Where did the idea for 'Get them something that says... you get them' come from?

We wanted to encourage people to step away from traditional gifts and find something much more meaningful and thoughtful to give this Christmas. We’re saying don’t buy a typical gift for a Mum, Dad or Gran but instead to look for something that really gets who they are. Beauty gifts, in particular, are a much more personal choice and Boots is the home of beauty gifting across the UK.

In order to get someone a beauty gift that says you ‘get them’, you need to have really thought about and understood that person.  And, on Christmas Day, you feel all that emotion, effort and thoughtfulness when you open it too.

But what I love about the ‘get them’ idea is how it lets us tell that story across the customer journey. We have a fantastic team of craft specialists on Boots and whether it’s in PR, loyalty, publishing or through our media partnership with the X Factor, it’s important that the core thought goes beyond the TV ad and engages in every channel right through to purchase. There’s even a social campaign that gives you the chance to have the Boots choir turn up and surprise your Mum with a personalized version of the song – it’s going to be a fully integrated Christmas!

How do you create that festive feeling?

We have a wonderful creative team, Liam Butler, Mark Harrison and producer Rachel Hough, who working closely with the director Frank Todaro, ensured the film felt truthful and authentic – that was crucial first and foremost - but also warm and festive.

We wanted the relationship between the mother and daughter to be genuine – one that showed the tensions, the ups and downs of real life. Frank did a wonderful job in terms of the casting to achieve this - I love the performances of the daughter (Molly) and Mum (Claire). Once you believe in those characters and the casting, the festive element can be dialed up a little further.

Let's talk about the magic behind the music - how did you select the soundtrack?

We were looking for a big, memorable track, but we wanted to do it in a small and intimate way. The music also needed to feel, again quite real and raw – like the inner monologue of a teenager.

We needed to find a song that would allow us the flexibility to tell a story from a teenager’s point of view and Robbie Williams’ ’She’s the One’ works well. Changing the lyric ‘she’s the one’ to ‘she’s me mum’ was a good way to bring the mother-daughter relationship to life and that’s where the magic started.

Any secrets from filming this ad you're willing to share..?

The wonderful moment at the end where Molly spots her mum singing was filmed under quite a lot of weather pressure. We had beautiful weather for the first two days then when we were in the market square filming the choir scene, it started pouring down with torrential rain. You can’t see it thankfully, but it was quite stressful towards the end - we had to grab the choir shots quite quickly. Thanks to Frank and his production team, they shot round it and still captured the Christmas magic. But we had to be agile! Molly’s look when she sees her Mum for who she truly is, is the most touching and powerful moment in the commercial for me. Happy Christmas!


Take a look at ‘Get them something that says…you get them’ here.