IKEA makes Black Friday about saving both money and the planet

The retailer is also shifting its spend and strategy to reach households that are already keen on going green.


Oscar Wilde famously said “a cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing,” and IKEA is reminding consumers that amidst Black Friday’s conspicuous consumption, there’s value in saving things other than money. 

In an integrated campaign behind this year’s Black Friday push, IKEA is again encouraging sustainable products and solutions across this integrated campaign, like showing the many lives one book shelf can lead.

IKEA is encouraging Canadians to not only save money, but water, energy, waste and resources by offering deals on its various sustainability initiatives.

Until Dec. 2, the retailer will offer double the assessed value back to customers who give their gently used IKEA furniture a second life through its Sell-Back program. If they are unable to bring their items to store, be it due to health concerns or how busy the holiday season is, customers can apply for the Sell-Back offer online and bring it back any time before the end of January (for regions where stores have been closed due to pandemic lockdown measures, the initiatives will be offered when it is safe to do so).

The retailer is also bringing additional promotions to its “As Is” selection of damaged or lightly used products.

“We want to show Canadians the wide range of sustainable solutions that IKEA offers and how they can be implemented into daily life,” says Johanna Andren, IKEA’s head of marketing in Canada, reminding consumers that many little acts add up to an outsized impact.

“On one of the biggest shopping days of the year, we want to change the conversation from mass consumption to mass circularity and show how sustainable living can be easy and affordable for everyone,” says Melissa Barbosa, head of sustainability at IKEA Canada. Barbosa adds that this year, it’s also targeting consumers who are trying to live more sustainably, leveraging Environics data to find households that over-index in terms of upholding these values.

ikeaThe overall spend for the campaign is relatively stable compared to past years, Andren says, but in order to adjust to new consumer behaviour during the pandemic, the brand did make some shifts. For example, its focus on transit channels was shifted towards proximity placements like residential elevator screens to target consumers in and around their homes.

“We also shifted focus toward channels that drive awareness, like TV, as well as more strategic placements across social and digital where there is higher sentiment towards sustainability and Black Friday,” she says.

Rethink is creative agency on the campaign, with Carat on the media buy and Wunderman Thompson working on extensions into direct channels and the IKEA Family loyalty program.