So far, this year’s winning viral Christmas ad goes to the tiny Hafod Hardware store in Rhayader, Wales (population 1,879), a mom and pop shop that has been running Christmas ads for three years.
The 30-second ad features the owner’s two-year old as the store’s proprietor getting ready for the Christmas rush. In the commercial, the boy sweeps the floors, runs the cash register and wraps gifts like a two-year-old, all with a thumbs-up and a big smile. The ad closes with a reminder for us all to "be a kid this Christmas." As the two year-old leaves the frame to pick up a Christmas tree, he re-enters the commercial a moment later as an adult, now played by his father.
It’s just a charming ad.
And it cost the family a total of $131 (100 pounds) which mostly covered the ad’s music.
According to USA Today, the ad had received 50,000 views on YouTube within two days of posting. As of Thursday, it had nearly 700,000 views. The owner of the store told the BBC and CNN that in addition to wanting to remind us all to keep the child-like spirit of Christmas alive, he wanted to put a spotlight on independent small businesses such as his family's. "I understand Christmas can be a very expensive time for everyone and they need to save money where they can," he told the BBC, "but if they can afford to, just try and shop at your small independent shops and support us. It makes a big difference."