Kiwibank and Jayden Daniels ask students to Major in New Zealand

Kiwibank has teamed up with Shortland Street’s Jayden Daniels to release a new campaign by agency Hello, targeting uni students who are keen to have their money reinvested into New Zealand. 

With the first semester soon to be underway around the country, the young soap star is seen walking through Auckland University of Technology’s campus followed closely by students showing their support for New Zealand by cheering and waving flags.

His voice cuts above the hype however as he discusses the way some banks coax new customers with freebies, such as backpacks and fries, while Kiwibank is offering investment in New Zealand.

While the video appears to be critiquing other banks for offering freebies in return for business, Kiwibank is also no stranger to the approach as general manager of marketing and communications Regan Savage says it’s previously offered freebies as well.

This time last year it was giving away vouchers for New World, travel and power.

“One of the things we’ve discovered as we develop our understanding of this particular target market is there’s a lot more to motivating people to choices as consumers in this day and age than to offer them freebies,” says Savage.

This year, it’s hoping the opportunity to back a company investing in New Zealand will be a key motivation to sign up to the bank.

And as well as consumers seeing through freebies, Savage adds that the giveaway idea no longer cuts the mustard for the Kiwibank brand as it wasn’t leveraging the most compelling part of its story.

That brand story can be seen in the way this campaign shares a similar tone to the bank’s brand campaigns from the past two years. In 2016, Kiwibank customers were projected onto the sides of New Zealand buildings and landmarks to reiterate the point of the bank keeping its profits local, while a series of videos and stories about the economy was shared on The Spinoff in an effort to educate New Zealanders about where their dollars are going and what they’re fuelling.

Then last year, the message was retargeted to business owners to show them how they could be making use of Kiwibank’s local offering.

Those campaigns were followed by the announcement that Kiwibank was taking its lead creative agency, Assignment Group, off retainer to instead work with a number of other partners with specialist skills.

This time, it was Hello that proved to be the best fit for the job. The Auckland agency was founded in March of last year by James Polhill after Us&Co closed its doors. He’s been joined by former Us&Co creative director Gilda Kirkpatrick and former Sugar & Partners creative director David Nash and ECD Damon O’Leary, who is now a creative director.

Savage says Kiwibank’s had a relationship with the agency for a while after it approached the bank with an interesting proposition, which has been brought out in this campaign for tertiary students.

Despite having never worked with the agency before, Savage says it was important that this campaign remained true to the message pushed out in all other Kiwibank campaigns.

“I think what’s really important as a brand is having a very strong sense of what you stand for,” says Savage. “I think we’ve been able with this campaign to bring that through but in a way that’s different to what we have done in the past – a different creative approach and working with an agency that, to us, appeared to be the right partner for this particular campaign to this demographic.”

The choice to use Daniels within the campaign was also considered in relation to the target audience and Savage describes him as an “upbeat, likeable guy who is quintessentially a young Kiwi”. On top of his fitting personality, Daniels has 44,700 Facebook followers, 1,600 of which have reacted to the Kiwibank video.

And on Instagram, he has 62,4000 followers, who are also set to aspects of the Kiwibank campaign.

The work with Daniels is a throwback to a 2015 campaign, which saw Kiwibank harness the audience of YouTuber Jamie Currie in a series of videos following her move from Napier to Auckland.

Production company: Thick as Thieves 
Director: Michael Duignan 
Executive Producer: Nik Beachman

Agency: Hello: The Conversation Company
CEO: James Polhill 
Creative Director(s): Damon O’Leary, Dave Nash & Gilda Kirkpatrick 
Account Director: Rebecca Toomer (Farlow)

Client: Kiwibank
Head of Campaigns: Vesna Nixon
Campaign Manager: Kylie Wing

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