Ninety-year-old comedian Don Rickles "roasting" chestnuts for you. Star chef Bobby Flay, a redhead, making you bread means, yup, gingerbread cookies.
Those are some of the quirky, offbeat scenes in Best Buy’s holiday ad campaign that starts hitting TV screens on Sunday.
Once again, the Richfield-based retailer is relying on humor throughout the ads that dream up ways to make the holidays even easier. Other absurd solutions include a turkey basting itself in the oven and a suitcase-wielding Christmas tree singing holiday tunes in a raspy male voice that walks up to your door already decorated.
In the absence of those options, the electronics chain notes that its blue-shirt experts in stores, its free holiday shipping and its “amazing deals” are another way to reduce some of the stress of the season.
Of course, these days many shoppers think that online shopping is the easiest option. But Best Buy is also making a case in the ads that coming to its stores and having its employees help you isn’t that hard. The theme of the campaign is “Holiday Gifting Made Easy.”
“The holidays can be nerve-racking,” Greg Revelle, Best Buy’s chief marketing officer, said in a statement. “Our campaign is a fun reminder that Best Buy is here to make shopping easy and enjoyable.”
While Best Buy is doing its part to drum up excitement for the season, this is not expected to be a blockbuster holiday for the retailer because of an industrywide lull in electronics sales that have been hurt in particular by a slowdown in smartphones. Best Buy has forecast flat sales for the year.
Haim Mano, a marketing professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, said the humor helps add to the notion of ease of shopping. And the choice of celebrities to feature in the ads was also very deliberate.
“I don’t think they can have Don Rickles without being cool,” he said, adding that will likely appeal more to baby boomers while Flay would be more of a draw to a younger crowd. “Bobby Flay is very likable, too.”
Best Buy’s holiday campaign last year under the slogan “Win the Holidays” didn’t showcase any celebrities but were also infused with humor showing how everyday customers emerged from shopping at Best Buy feeling victorious. In 2014, its holiday ads were narrated by actor Bradley Cooper.
This year’s holiday campaign includes about 15 TV, digital and social spots. A company spokeswoman said Best Buy had made a similar TV buy as last year but is once again increasing its digital investment since that’s where most of its customers spend most of their time.
The ads were directed by Harold Einstein and produced in partnership with Dummy Films.
As it has for several of its recent campaigns, Best Buy partnered with agency Grey New York on the holiday ads. That firm also worked on its back-to-school campaign that featured comedian and actor Adam Devine.