Around this time every year, Spaniards start to go Christmas lottery mad, queuing for hours to buy their tickets and waiting excitedly for the grand unveiling of Spain’s annual Christmas lottery advert.
But this year, there is not one but four separate adverts, each of which is designed to have you in tears.
The ads, by Madrid agency Contrapunto BBDO, feature well known Spanish actors and are designed on the theme central to the Spanish lottery culture.
Unlike most lotteries that reward individuals, Spain’s Christmas lottery typically rewards groups of coworkers, relatives or friends who pooled together to buy tickets with the same number.
In Spain it is customary to team up with groups of co-workers, friends and family to all buy a share in the same number – that way you all share in a win.
The campaign, called #UnidosPorUnDécimo, or “United by a Decimal” in reference to each group’s shared ticket number, has the strapline “When you share a Christmas lottery ticket, you share so much more.”
Each 90 second ad tells its own story, of a bond between two central characters strengthened through the sharing of a “décimo”.
1: The story of Ramón and José
2. : The story of Pilar and Félix
3. : The story of Carmen and Víctor
4. : The story of Emilio and Gloria
Previous campaigns have included the animated tale of Justino, a lonely nightwatchman in a mannequin factory (2015) and a confused grandmother who mistakenly believes that she has won the lottery and wants the whole town to celebrate with her.
Last year’s spot emulated “Groundhog Day” with grumpy key cutter Juan reliving the day of December 22nd – the day of the lottery draw.
Spain’s Christmas lottery – known as El Gordo or the Fat One – is the richest in the world, paying out millions of euros to winners every year.
The prize money for the 2019 draw – to be held on December 22nd – will be €2.38 billion.
Its popularity stems from its many prizes, which mean that chances of winning at least something are high.
The grand unveiling of the lottery balls is carried out in a unique way – lottery numbers are sung by pupils from Madrid’s San Ildefonso school.