Kiwibank casts net for creative agencies

Kiwibank has announced a search for creative agencies to support the next phase of its growth.

Simon Hofmann, who was appointed head of brand and marketing in August this year, says as the bank evolves, the timing is right to take a fresh look at its creative capabilities.

“Kiwibank has an incredible brand that has been developed with a history of fantastic partners. To stay relevant and respect one of New Zealand’s most important brands we must constantly ensure we are challenging ourselves. The aim is to build a strong agency eco-system across all layers of the brand.”

The bank is looking to appoint a panel of creative agencies across strategy, brand communications, performance, campaign delivery and content with a strong understanding of the constantly evolving digital landscape.

Hofmann says its looking for partners who are keen to collaborate and work with it towards one common goal – “to do the best they can for the Kiwibank brand every day and be part a connected part of our whanau”.

Already Kiwibank is working with a suite of agencies after it took Assignment Group off retainer in August last year. While it has worked with Assignment since then, it has also worked on projects with a number of agencies including The Enthusiasts, EightyOne and Wrestler.

It’s worked on the ‘Let’s Go’ campaign with The Enthusiasts and a Banqer campaign with Wrestler.

Hofmann says it is continuing to work with those three agencies today and will do so in the new year.

At the time of the move to take Assignment Group off retainer, former general manager of marketing communciations Regan Savage explained the objective was to ensure it had complete freedom to bring to the table for the very best partner for the job at hand.

And later, speaking to NZ Marketing, Savage said the multiple partners approach eliminates the difficulty that can come when relying on a single partner to deliver across all channels.

With there being so much change in the media environment and new technologies in the market right now, agencies that are jack-of-all-trades are often masters of none, therefore, a specialist agency with a deep understanding of the required channel is often called upon.

Now, when Hofmann is asked what the new mix of agencies will look like, he says it’s open to what will best deliver on its goal to do the best it can for the Kiwibank brand.

However, Hofmann does say that while the location of agencies is not restricted, most of the team who deal with agencies day-to-day reside in Wellington. 

“We’re simply looking for the best and brightest to join us from across New Zealand.”

With the timing of this new search kicking off in the lead up to Christmas and New Year, Hofmann says it’s been considerate not to cram a lot of work into the final weeks of the year.

“We get that traditional pitch processes can be time consuming, expensive and distracting so we are trying to ‘un-pitch’ it a little. The team is keen to make it as immersive as possible in place of big shiny presentations. We want to spend time in the agencies getting to know the people, understand what allows them to do great work and chat with existing clients around what makes their partnership hum. 

“We know that it’s a tricky time of the year to be kicking this off so we’re taking a light touch approach pre-Christmas and certainly won’t be asking for any action over the summer break. This is reflective of the type of relationships we want to build.” 

Hofmann is hoping this side of the break will see conversations with agencies begin so the process can kick off in the new year when everyone is back and agencies are resourced up.Expressions of interest for agencies interested in having an initial conversation should be emailed to diana.young@kiwibank.co.nz by 12pm 18 December 2018.

Expressions of interest for agencies interested in having an initial conversation should be emailed to diana.young@kiwibank.co.nz by 12pm 4 December 2018.

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