UK soft drinks producer AG Barr has said it will be stepping up marketing and promotional activity behind its Irn-Bru brand over the Christmas period, with the marketing push to include a national television advertising campaign.

The Christmas ad campaign forms part of the company's GBP7m annual spend on the brand, and will be supported with limited-edition labelling, featuring images from its Snowman TV adverts, and price promotions on all 330ml, 500ml and 2-litre packs.

The company is also planning to introduce a new look to its 250ml bottle size which is available as a single or 8-pack purchase.

In spite of poor summer weather, AG Barr said Irn-Bru grew its national market share in June, July and August, posting growth in August alone of 6.5% in value terms and 17% in volumes. According to the latest Nielsen data, the brand is showing 3% value growth year-on-year, the company said.

The recent launch of Irn-Bru 32 in 330ml cans has also boosted sales and distribution of the brand, the company added.

"The total Irn-Bru brand has performed very well this year," said AG Barr commercial director Jonathan Kemp. "Combined sales revenue for Irn-Bru and Diet Irn-Bru achieved a 2% growth in the first six months despite the poor summer weather. Christmas is a key trading period for the industry and we have put an exciting programme of activity together to ensure that Irn-Bru continues to deliver phenomenal sales both nationally and in Scotland right through to Hogmanay and the New Year."