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Nedbank's Striking Anti-Advertising Campaign Urges South Africans to Take their Money Seriously

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#TakeMoneySeriously was created by Joe Public Johannesburg and directed by Greg Gray through Romance Films

Nedbank's Striking Anti-Advertising Campaign Urges South Africans to Take their Money Seriously

When it comes to money, South Africans are notoriously overextended, with one of the lowest savings and highest debt-to-income ratios in the world. Nedbank, a bank that has always championed taking money seriously, wanted to take a stand and create social consciousness around excessive consumerism and irresponsible money behaviour. 

To achieve this, integrated brand and communications group Joe Public United in arms with Romance Films brought to life a campaign that subtly subverts the signals of advertising to get people to think more critically about the thousands of messages exhorting them to want more and spend more. 

As a result, an anti-advertising campaign was created through a series of fictitious product commercials. However, instead of selling products, the campaign strikes the conscience of South Africans around the critical need to #TakeMoneySeriously by joining the bank that already does.

“As a bank that wants to use its expertise to do good, we, together with Nedbank, found that this is a golden opportunity for us to draw attention to the reality of overspending and irresponsible borrowing, as well as the urgent need to save and invest for the long term. Therefore, we had to ask ourselves how we awaken a social conscience of ‘investorism’ rather than consumerism? The result is a thought-provoking campaign that takes the very same advertising messages that usually encourage spending and, instead, use them to stimulate critical thinking and challenge underlying presuppositions around banking and money,” says Xolisa Dyeshana, chief creative officer, Joe Public United. 

Directed by Greg Gray of Romance Films, each of the five films in the campaign appears, at first glance, to be a commercial we are all familiar with: the luxury car on the wide-open road, the edgy basketball player with the cool new kicks, the shiny features of the latest smartphone, the sophistication of the cocktail lounge, the ethereal sensuality of perfume – all recognisable tropes that we, as consumers, understand, respond and give meaning and our money to. However, as each film progresses, the allusions to unchecked spending gradually become more pronounced to reveal that all that glitters is not necessarily gold. Explicit references to banking clichés are intentionally held back to build interest, intrigue and impact before revealing that this is, in fact, a commercial for a bank.  

Romance Films was challenged to create a sense of the unexpected within each trope to break through viewer complacency with conventional executions. Working in collaboration with Joe Public United, the thinking and filmic treatment was pushed to arrive at something distinctive and evocative. This campaign features products in their most desirable and aspirational but, ultimately, financially perilous way possible. 

The fully integrated 360-degree, through-the-line campaign will continue to roll out across all mass media platforms, digital media, outdoor advertising and PR, in an effort to help people understand the impact of their money choices, good and bad, to offer alternatives to old spending patterns, and ultimately, #TakeMoneySeriously. 

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Brand: Nedbank

Brand Representatives (Client): Khensani Nobanda, Nthabiseng Matshekga, Buli Ndlovu, Molise Moloi, Rachel Motloung, Thuladu Khumalo, Anisha Khan

Agency: Joe Public Johannesburg

Group Chief Creative Officer: Pepe Marais

Chief Creative Officer: Xolisa Dyeshana

Creative Directors: Martin Schlumpf, Assaf Levy

Art Directors: Wesley Wolf, Zamani Ngubane

Copywriters: Michelle Mckenna, Caroline Bergh

Group Chief Strategic Officer: Laurent Marty

Strategy Director: Chad Nelson

Account Management: Lebogang Sebola, Candice Shortt, Nomsa Sidu, Phindile Ndzekeli

Agency Producer: Di Cole

Stills Producer: Tammy Chetty

Traffic: Michele Lazarus, Vanessa Pegler

Production: Manuel Lopes, Belinda Shea

Production Company & City: Romance Films / Cape Town

Director: Greg Gray

Executive Producer: Helena Woodfine

Line Producer: Leanne Sanders

Production Manager: Shannon McDougall

Director of Photography: Adam Bentel

Production Art Director: Will Boyes

Stylist / Costume Design: Bridget Baker

Head of Creative Research: Maghiel van Dorssen

Creative Research: Annalize Mostert

Editor: Kobus Loots

Editing Company: Deliverance

Visual Effects / Post-production: Chocolate Tribe

VFX Supervisor: Rob van den Bracht

Lead Technical Director: Tiaan Franken

VFX Producer: Corlia Ohlsen de Fine

Lead Compositor: Jean du Plessis

Colourist: Nic Apostoli / Strangelove

Sound: The WorkRoom, StudiJoe

Sound Engineering: Stephen Webster, Sergio Da Cruz

Sound Design: Kobus Loots, Stephen Webster

Post-production Facility: Chocolate Tribe

Principal Actor – Perfume: Tanya van Graan

Principal Actor – Cellphone: Kwakho Qongqo

Principal Actor - Luxury Car: Levi Masoet

Principal Actor – Cognac: Martial Batchamen Tchana. Lauren-Joy Manus

Principal Actor – Basketball: Siphumle Qanya

Media Agency: The Media Shop

Digital Agency: Digitas Liquorice

PR Agency: Riverbed

Editorial Contacts:

Joe Public United
Tarryn Pickup
021 013 3672
Romance Films
Helena Woodfine
083 626 0422

Genres: Action, Storytelling

Categories: Banking, Finance

Joe Public United, Thu, 13 May 2021 14:17:00 GMT