BMO puts focus on personal advice for wealth management

Who: BMO, with FCB Canada for strategy and creative, UM for media, Asymetric Media for production (Brooks Reynolds directing), with Rooster, Alter Ego, Fort York, and OSO for post production.

What: “Great advice pays off,” a new integrated ad campaign for the bank’s wealth management practice, BMO Private Wealth.

When & Where: The campaign went live this month using out-of-home, TV (heavy on sports and prime time programming), social media, and in-flight video with Air Canada. It runs through the end of the year.

Why: There’s has been a lot of noise and disruption in personal investing over the last year or so, said Shelley Johnsen, director, brand advertising for BMO. Extraordinary circumstances—from meme-stocks and cryptocurrency, to the growth of fintech and the effects of the pandemic —have led to a lot of confusion for many high net-worth investors who are looking for help and advice.

“For this segment—our high-net-worth clients—the market and investing is one piece of a really complex financial puzzle that they have,” said Johnsen. “They require this really personalized approach that a human relationship provides.

“Given all this noise, we set out to prove the power of that advice through a campaign that’s focused on the value of the relationship with the advisor.”

How: The underlying insight is that regardless of their personal wealth, people have a lot of worries on their mind. “For the private wealth segment, these worries are really big and thorny and complicated, and we wanted the audience to see that we deeply understand those concerns.”

The ad “really leans into getting into our clients’ heads,” said Johnsen, showing the kinds of worries clients and prospective clients are dealing with. The ad opens with Danielle waking up in bed and reading her alarm clock, which says “stocks” beside a down arrow. As she gets ready to start the day, she sees “tuition” spelled out by alphabet cereal in a bowl, and then “taxes” on a roadside construction sign. The ad ends with her arriving to a meeting with her friendly advisor. “I could really use some advice,” she says. “Let’s get to work,” the advisor responds, as the message “Great advice pays off” appears on screen, followed by a BMO blue screen and the BMO Private Wealth logo.

“While a bunch of other financial institutions are really focused on things like fees, we’re focusing on these bigger things that keep our clients up at night, and that peace of mind from getting advice, and having a partnership with an experienced advisor,” said Johnsen.

The music: “The other piece of this to really drive memorability was the music. This really beautiful, big highly recognizable track,” said Johnsen. The song is Edit Piaf’s “No Regrets” in English, as well as the original version (“Non, je ne regrette rien”) in French. “The lyrics for the music really reinforce the benefit of this idea of having no regrets when you work with BMO,” said Johnsen.

And we quote: “Private Wealth clients often feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders… With this campaign, we’re setting out to show that when it comes to peace of mind, great advice pays off.” —Jeremiah McNama, executive creative director, FCB Canada.

David Brown