John Lewis spends £6m on biggest-ever ad campaign

John Lewis is to turn the screws on its rivals Marks & Spencer, Debenhams and House of Fraser by launching its biggest ever advertising campaign on Friday. The department store said the £6m advertising campaign over the next six weeks aims to "reposition" its famous "never knowingly undersold" strapline.

Craig Inglis, the marketing director at John Lewis, said the series of ads show a woman moving through the key stages of her life, such as from giving birth to becoming a grandmother, and how she interacts with John Lewis and the "DNA" of its brand.

The first advertisements will be in the break of ITV's Coronation Street on Friday and will also be shown alongside other programmes, such as Channel 4's Glee, and the celebrity chef Marco Pierre White's Marco's Kitchen Burnout on ITV. The advertisements will also appear in newspapers.

Mr Inglis said: "We are repositioning 'never knowingly undersold' in the market. It has been around 85 years. Over the last five to six years, it has become known as just a price promise and it was never intended like that. It had become slightly legalistic."

He added: "We have allowed it to become that and we want to repackage it and make it clear what it is all about: quality, service and price."

The launch may raise concerns at Marks & Spencer, House of Fraser and Debenhams, given that John Lewis outperformed them at Christmas in terms of sales and has enjoyed a strong start to its new financial year. For the 10 weeks to 10 April, John Lewis's sales are 17 per cent ahead of last year. Mr Inglis described its biggest-ever spend on an advertising campaign as a "significant investment", adding: "It shows we are upping the ante."

Despite the challenging outlook for retailers, Mr Inglis said that consumers are looking for value, based on both price and quality. "It feels like our time. It feels like 'never knowingly undersold' has never been more appropriate."

But he said the high street still faces a tough second half of the year, given the pressure on consumer spend and the uncertainty over any measures the next government may take to reduce the deficit. "I think the reality is that we are still facing a very changeable and unpredictable future and we are still expecting it to be difficult," he said.

The TV ads use a re-recorded version of Billy Joel's "She's Always a Woman", sung by the Guillemots. The campaign was produced by the communications agency Adam & Eve, which also did John Lewis's Christmas campaign.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Payments Operations Assistant

£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They win lots of awards for the...

Recruitment Genius: Telephone Debt Negotiator

£13500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This nationwide enforcement com...

Guru Careers: Communications Exec / PR Exec

£25 - £30K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a highly-motivated and ambitious Comm...

Guru Careers: Pricing Analyst

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral