AUCKLAND, Saturday: At least five agencies are understood to have been shortlisted in a pitch for the prized ASB media account, reports editor-at-large Shayne Currie in the Weekend Herald’s Media Insider page.
The incumbent is Dentsu; the shortlist is Together; Dynamo; Group M; and FCB Media.
Currie (who did some serious legwork on this story) writes, “This reflects huge interest in the multimillion-dollar contract”.
“For ad agencies it’s a big deal: the successful bidder would likely need to bring in dozens of new staff.
“ ‘Everyone wants a bank,” says one media insider. ‘They spend so much, and it’s stable money, even in an economic downturn.’ ”
Currie continues: “Some of the agencies will walk a very careful path during the tender process, especially any that already have links with banks. They won’t want to risk fallout with existing clients.
“A sixth agency, who Media Insider was told was on the list, insists it’s not. Things can move rather rapidly in this space.
“Sources say Group M may have an inside running, given its Australian parent looks after ASB owner Commonwealth Bank of Australia. Group M Australasia ceo Aimee Buchanan – like many of the leaders at the other agencies – didn’t wish to comment, citing ‘a confidential process’.
“ASB was reluctant to comment on the next phase of the selection process and the criteria. It did confirm that Ben and Amy would remain at the centre of its creative execution.”
SB itself was also reluctant to comment on the next phase of the selection process and the criteria. It did confirm that Ben and Amy would remain at the centre of its creative execution.
“For more than a decade, Ira Goldstein dominated our screens. He featured in about 60 commercials and became an annoying master of the goofy one-liner, such as his infamous ‘herd (heard) of chickens?’.
“For all Goldstein’s many, cringeworthy faults, the advertisements firmly placed ASB in a marketing hall of fame, a position it maintained through the 2010s after Goldstein departed.
“And today, that continues with the softer, modern-day appeal of Ben and Amy, and their emotional exploits as a young couple.
“Over the past two years, in various public surveys, Ben and Amy have been voted top or near top as people’s favourite ad campaign, often alongside Trustpower’s three-legged dog, one-legged owner.
“Now, one of the biggest deals to help distribute that ASB campaign, and lead the strategy for others, is up for grabs as the bank consolidates all its media services – strategy, planning, buying, analysis and reporting – into one contract, dealing with tens of millions of dollars of advertising spend.”
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