Hobbycraft launches inaugural video-on-demand Christmas ad

Arts and crafts retailer Hobbycraft has launched its first video-on-demand (VoD) ads, encouraging consumers to continue their interest in crafting this coming Christmas.

The ‘Let’s Craft Together this Christmas’ campaign shows how the UK increased its focus on making and mending during the coronavirus crisis, highlighting how crafting “brought families together even though we’re apart”. The retailer has made what is a growing trend in terms of its sales the core part of its festive marketing.

The advert, which aired for the first time this week, will appear across VoD services including Sky On Demand, ITV Hub and All 4. The advert was produced in-house, although the marketing team worked with a team of local freelancers to develop the creative assets.

Hobbycraft's revenue was up by 8.9% to £193.6 million in the 12 months to 16 February, but online sales were up by 200% year-on-year during some stages of the coronavirus-enforced national lockdown which followed, as demand for the retailer’s products continued in the crisis and new customers sought activities for the extra time at home.

Joel Pickering, head of marketing & brand at Hobbycraft, said: “We’ve seen an exceptional level of customer demand this year, and with more people turning to craft than ever before it’s the perfect time for us to launch our first VoD brand advert.

“We want to show that Hobbycraft is here to help bring families together with arts and crafts, and we hope our Christmas campaign will resonate with new and existing customers. The nation has turned to craft this year and we can see this continuing into the festive season and beyond.”

Last month, Hobbycraft’s head of digital experience, Jennifer North, said the retailer would be doing more brand-led marketing “and cascading it down the funnel”. She made the comments during her presentation at e-tail trade association IMRG’s virtual Data Week event in September.

It’s part of a decision by the company, she said, to be ambitious in its efforts to build on the doubling of online sales experienced since the start of 2020 and ensure the company continues to improve its eCommerce offering and evolves with consumers' more digital requirements.

North revealed Hobbycraft scaled its distribution centre (DC) significantly during the height of the pandemic, taking on more packing agents, doubling the number of benches in picking areas of the DC, and generally expanding its online business functions to meet demand.

“We have turned into a different operation, and although the market is softening we don’t want to go backwards – we want to stay at this level,” she remarked.