Youtube VideoMore like a film launch than a traditional ad campaign, Kiwibank’s cheeky new EasySwitch campaign, which encourages consumers to switch banks via an interactive YouTube channel called ‘Green Ops' that looks and feels like a first-person POV-style game, has taken out the Colmar Brunton Ad Impact Award for August.
Complete with blockbuster movie trailer effects, it’s certainly not your traditional bank campaign. The site is built around a loose narrative of an elite team whose mission is to help rescue customers from bad banking experiences and visitors to the channel can hunt for ‘hotspots’ where they’ll find random moments of humour and discovery, not to mention some lees than subtle references to its competitors. Could one of banking’s best loved personalities have made the switch? Watch out for the cameo: “Kiwibank, you complete me.”
“The ‘gamification’ aims to provide a richer and more engaging experience,” says Kiwibank’s Nicky Ashton. “It’s kind of like Get Smart meets The Bourne Identity, as the ‘Green Ops’ team goes around making it easier for people to switch to Kiwibank.”
“That trademark tongue-in-cheek humour really grabs the attention of the viewer," says Colmar Brunton senior account manager Harriet Dixon. "Combine this with great branding, and starring the little green car yet again, it’s intrinsically tied to Kiwibank."
There are also games to play, videos to watch, and competitions to win (there's now even the chance for switchers to win a black Smart car) and the channel also features a number of interactive elements allowing users to share their experience with friends via social media.
“The feedback we’ve had from people who have interacted with the site has been overwhelmingly positive,” says Ashton. “It’s created a real buzz.”
As well as cleverly spoofing other campaigns, the initiative positions Kiwibank as something different and worth checking out, which is exactly what an ad for switching banks should do.
“We utilised every in-house facility to the max to achieve this look,” says Ogilvy’s Dave Nash, whose collaborative effort alongside Damon O'Leary, Peter Vegas and Glenn Wood, produced the distinctive and creative result. “The entire team was buzzing, ideas were flying, and the product just grew bigger and better as we progressed.”
Z Energy's campaign by Assignment Group, which takes us onto the forecourt and tries to depict a caring company that’s keen to hear what customers have to say and was keen on giving back to local neighbourhoods, also stood out.
"The branding of this ad is outstanding," says Dixon. "The consistent use of the same music and the strategically placed ‘Z’ logo, is integrating these brand cues well into the main focus of the ads."