Despite the primacy of Christmas in American culture, the visibility of Hanukkah in pop culture reminds Jews that they have their own holiday in which they can take pride.
Hanukkah is ranked one of Judaism's minor festivals. It's popularity in the US has a lot to do with the country's history.
Hanukkah was instituted in 164 B.C. to celebrate military victory, but the meaning has changed over time with the circumstances of the Jewish people.