ANZ Bank took over as Black Caps sponsors from National Bank, when it absorbed the brand last year. Even though it’s new to the game of cricket, it’s already producing cringeworthy TVCs with the best of them.
The latest cricket ad promotes ANZ Cricket World, a cricket community for grass root players of the game. The TVC features seven Kiwi sports stars playing beach cricket in front of Rangitoto Island- including former Black Caps fast bowler, and current bowling coach, Shane Bond.
The ad exemplifies the difficulties of using sports stars in ad campaigns. On the one hand, the athletes provide pulling power with their achievements and lend their credibility to the brand; while on the other, their performances on screen very rarely matches their output on the field.
New Zealand has a long proud history of awkward product endorsements by sports men and women. Sir Richard Hadlee’s turn as the spokesperson for HRV has been said by many to be the creepiest performance by a sportsman in New Zealand commercial history.
Manu Vatuvei, Steve Price, and Simon Mannering are hard hitters in the NRL, but come off looking second best to Hawaiian t-shirts in this Sky TV spot from a few years ago.
There are some instances of sports stars being used incredibly effectively, as this other Sky TV ad for the Rugby World Cup shows.
ANZ’s anthropomorphic ATM mascot got a bit of flak over the weekend for being an ATM mascot. Comedian Guy Williams asks if this is possibly the worst mascot in history, while we at StopPress say it’s a very fitting (if unimaginative) representative for a bank.
— Guy Williams (@guywilliamsguy) February 9, 2013
Meanwhile, ASB Bank and Saatchi are teasing their new mascot, with a five second snippet for a new campaign featuring a bushy bearded cowboy (perhaps played by Brian Blessed, actor and adventurer, renowned for a voice that’s brought down a thousand empires).