Channel 4 is running an ad break takeover this evening that aims to support local businesses by highlighting that the British high street is back open.

Devine Flowers in Maidenhead is one of the small businesses chosen to take part in the Channel 4 takeover and will be supported by Lloyds Bank

Brands including Coca-Cola, Lloyds Bank and Rightmove are supporting local businesses through an ad break takeover on Channel 4 highlighting that the British high street is back open for business.

‘The Great High Street Comeback’ sees brands, which also include American Express and Bought by Many, donate a 30-second ad slot to each local business. The ads will be aired across Channel 4, E4, Film4, More4, 4Music and All4 as part of a takeover, as well as on social media with the hashtag #Back4Business.

Coca-Cola, for example, will support an ad for Irish bar Seamus O’Donnells in Bristol, while Lloyds Bank is supporting Devine Flowers in Maidenhead. American Express is supporting Jokoto Tailoring in Bristol, LV Property in Birmingham will be supported by Rightmove, while Larch Green Alpacas in Glasgow is being supported by Bought by Many.

Channel 4 is also getting involved, supporting Kool Kuts barbers in Brixton. All the local businesses have had both their airtime and ad production fully funded. The brands will have their logos feature in the films, showcasing their help in supporting the SMEs.

The businesses featuring were chosen after an on-air and social campaign launched earlier this month to find companies to feature. The ads will aim to show a “real moment of authenticity”, according to Channel 4, to communicate the message that businesses are back and ready to serve customers.

Why big brands are helping local businesses navigate Covid-19

Channel 4’s head of digital and partnership innovation, Jonathan Lewis, says: “At a time when community has taken on a new importance, this bespoke ad break takeover will take a positive local message to a national audience. With thanks to the great help of some of our advertiser friends and partners we are delighted to be play our part in encouraging the public to support local business, get back out on the high street and ultimately get back shopping.”

For Coca-Cola, the support is part of a wider programme of activities it has planned to support small businesses, with a specific focus on hotels, cafes and restaurants hardest hit by the Covid-19 lockdown. The hospitality venue support programme will see Coca-Cola donate “multimillion pounds” worth of media budget and advertising space to hundreds of its existing commercial customers to help get them back on their feet.

Through the ad creator platform, Coke will help these small businesses develop ads for digital, social and outdoor to promote their restaurant, bar or shop, using the creative message of the drinks giant’s new ‘Open Like Never Before’ campaign.

“One big part of the campaign is how we make a difference. We are creating positive action. We will use very local material, outdoor and print to really celebrate the local shop, the local restaurant,” said Coca-Cola’s senior vice-president of marketing in EMEA, Walter Susini, speaking earlier this week.

“The power of the Coca-Cola brand at its best is the ability to go really high, with the big message of the film, or really small. The empathy goes from a big message for everybody to really engage with the community, door by door, restaurant by restaurant, bar by bar.”

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