Lidl pre-empts rivals with surprising ‘Surprise’ campaign

It must be fun running Lidl (and its German cousin Aldi) at the moment as the two German discounters are busily routing the giants of the British supermarket game.

Tesco’s new CEO Dave Lewis has been dragged off his holidays to try to find a desk in Tesco’s crowded Cheshunt HQ a month early as the UK’s market leader (its share has fallen from over 30 per cent to about 28 in the past few months) tries desperately to combat the cocky Germans.

And now Lidl is launching a new TV campaign through TBWA plugging the quality of its food by surprising a bunch of artisanal food curators at an East London market – with not a price in sight.

Great stuff and well done TBWA. This is perhaps the first campaign from the new regime there, headed by former AMV/BBDO creative director Peter Souter, that indicates a transformation of the agency may indeed be in progress.

It’s also clever of Lidl boss Ronny Gottschlich to launch a brand campaign when the world is talking about Tesco’s problems at the hands of the Germans. It’s also a good idea to get your retaliation in first before all your rivals wheel out the big ad guns at Christmas

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.


  1. Well done TBWA. Love the “Little Market” ad. I expect to see you in the Ad awards, shortly.

  2. I’m biased Stephen, as my mail address implies.

    Although we at TBWA might suggest there are some price message embedded in our commercials, we’re most appreciative of your post. So much so, we wondered if you like to join us for a Lidl slap-up lunch at sometime in the not too distant future. (The price on this occasion will, of course, be free.)

    Let me know if you’re interested and we’ll let you know the details.

    John Lowery

  3. Be delighted to John.

    There isn’t a Lidl in the hood I inhabit (or I haven’t found it yet).


  4. That’s great.

    Can you send a mail to my TBWA address and we’ll let you know when, where, etc.