Coffee shop ad makes local community ‘super’ stars

Never mind the John Lewis penguin, Marks & Spencer’s fairies or Sainsbury’s nostalgic ode to the First World War - a Ballymoney coffee bar has unleashed its creative juices to make, for the first time ever, a Christmas ad of its very own.

Ground Espresso Bars, which now boasts an impressive 13 coffee shops across the island of Ireland, got its start along the north coast just over 10 years ago.

A still from Ground Espresso Bar's first ever Christmas 'movie' ad

A still from Ground Espresso Bar's first ever Christmas 'movie' ad

But this year for Christmas, one of the company’s directors, Darren Gardiner, said they thought they would try something a little different.

Speaking about the coffee company’s foray into the world of advertising - a Christmas ad filmed in their Bushmills coffee shop - he told the Times: “It started out as just a little project.

“We thought we would like to do something in one of the stores, and it really was just something that we thought we would do with customers and staff and friends.

“Then it led on to something a wee bit more special because we engaged the right kind of people to do it - the production company, camera crew and a lot of people involved in the actual production.

“When we started putting it together we thought it would be nice to have our own sound track to it, and we used local music producer Richard Campbell and he created the completely original composition of Let It Snow that you hear on the track.

“The young girl that’s singing in it Jasmine - she’s only 14.”

But Jasmine, he insisted was chosen because of her lovely singing voice, and not because she’s his daughter - and at the Times we would be inclined to believe him.

And recording and putting together the song was plain sailing Darren explained, with the young song-bird having nailed it in just three takes over 40 minutes.

“Once we actually heard the song played back,” he went on, “that’s when we thought this could be something special.

“Then we used fancy cameras and we recorded the whole thing in slow motion because we set the tempo of the movie to suit the music.”

And the folks in the video - they are customers, office staff, family and friends - which Darren said helped them keep it personal to the company.

“We just thought it was a lovely piece that kind of personified Christmas in Ground locally her on the north coast... and we didn’t do it for any other reason than we thought it was a nice thing to do for Christmas.

“Showcasing what we do, and the fact that it’s from Northern Ireland and the fact that its local - we think we have produced something that is equally as good as some of what the big UK retailers have spent millions on.”

The short film, a delicious portrayal of everything Ground has to offer, can be seen on the company’s Youtube and Facebook pages, and has so far managed to gather over 2,500 hits.