Finding money in new CIBC campaign

Who: CIBC, with Courage for strategy and creative; Spy Films for production (directed by Romain Chassaing); Nimiopere and Alter Ego for post-production; Grayson Music for audio, and MediaCom for media.

What: “Finders Keepers,” a new campaign for the bank’s Dividend Visa Infinite credit card. It’s some of the first product focused creative from Courage, and retains the “Ambitions Made Real” platform, with some updates.

When & Where: The campaign launched last month, running on TV and as digital video cutdowns.

Why: While CIBC changed creative agencies, it is happy with the “Ambitions Made Real” platform launched in 2021, but wanted Courage to do more with it, said the agency’s partner and chief strategy officer, Tom Kenny. “[They wanted] to make it stand out more in the market and be a bit more disruptive, so that’s the journey that we’ve been on with them over the past six months or so.”

One of the changes from Courage has been to shift the emphasis from ambitions to real. Much of the earlier advertising on the platform showed people facing financial anxiety, but with their ambitions realized by the end of the ad, said Kenny.

“Most people have these ambitions, but it’s more of an incremental journey to get there,” he said. “Our thought was, ‘How do we shift the emphasis from ambitions to the real… how do we tap into the financial realities that a lot of Canadians are dealing with right now?'”

How: The campaign is anchored by “Finders Keepers,” a 30-second ad showing a young woman literally finding money when using her Dividend Visa Infinite Card: she pulls a $5 bill from her meal at a restaurant, and after buying a banana in a market, peels it to find another $5 inside, and so on. “Find money in every purchase you make, to redeem on any purchase you want to make,” explains a voiceover.

Initially the plan was to show how people earn cash back to spend on the things they want, said Kenny “The way we reframed the brief a little bit to be reflective of people’s realities is more on on the earning cash back piece, versus the spending.”

People are currently anxious about inflation and talk of a coming recession, he said. “The notion of being able to earn a couple of bucks here and there, through your everyday spending, we thought it was [an idea] that would be appealing and resonant.”

How else is CIBC changing? There’s a conscious effort to move away from some of the traditional tropes of financial advertising, said Kenny.

“A lot of it feels very similar, and the research reflects the fact that people have a hard time distinguishing one bank from another,” he said. “What you see is an attempt to deviate from some of the conventions of bank advertising… the way it’s shot, the tone of the spot, the music of this spot, hopefully feels very unique within the category and will stand up for that.”

The diamond logo that was launched with the platform in 2021 to represent a “portal to your ambitions” is there, but is being treated a little differently. In earlier creative, it was much larger and presented as an actual portal for characters to pass through on their way to their ambitions. In the new Courage creative, the logo is there, glowing magically in the final scene, but much smaller.

Courage also created an animated version of the logo to close the spot. “It takes a logo that might otherwise feel a bit corporate and a bit formal, and makes it a little bit more human, a little bit more playful and approachable,” said Kenny.

David Brown