MasterCard launches made-in Canada campaign

Canadian creative won over u.s. work as the first made-in-Canada tv campaign for MasterCard International launches this week in major English markets.The campaign comes from The Communique Group, the Toronto agency hired last January by Mastercard for the English-language portion of...

Canadian creative won over u.s. work as the first made-in-Canada tv campaign for MasterCard International launches this week in major English markets.

The campaign comes from The Communique Group, the Toronto agency hired last January by Mastercard for the English-language portion of its $3.5-million to $5-million Canadian assignment.

The u.s. campaign was created by Ammirati & Puris, New York, which last year won the $60-million u.s. MasterCard account, previously with Lintas New York.

Previous Canadian MasterCard campaigns have been adapted from u.s. or international creative on a project basis, last year by J. Walter Thompson and, before that, by DDB Needham.

Although MasterCard’s strategy is identical on both sides of the border, it was decided that the approach taken by Ammirati & Puris was not relevant to the Canadian marketplace.

Ammirati & Puris uses the slogan ‘It’s More Than a Credit Card – It’s Smart Money,’ and it tries to show how MasterCard can function in everyday life, for example, to be used to buy groceries.

The u.s. campaign also wages a stronger attack on rivals Visa and American Express.

In Canada, Communique illustrates MasterCard’s goal to be the credit card of choice from the day you apply to the day you die with the themeline, ‘Your Card for Life,’ which was first introduced on radio this summer.

The theme is extended to show MasterCard as a functional part of life with a creative approach that uses zest-for-life scenarios.

The supplementary strategy of the campaign is to build brand awareness and emphasize that MasterCard is accepted in as many places worldwide as Visa.

Two 30-second spots have been created to run through to Dec. 19.

Even though MasterCard is looking to grow its appeal in the 25 to 49 year-old group, Communique has chosen a young-at-heart approach for ‘Dangerous,’ the first execution, as opposed to young-in-age.

It is a fast-paced adventure starring four 50-plus women in a flashy red 1960s convertible on a driving holiday to Arizona and set to a musical background of quirky roadhouse/honky tonk music.

The foursome uses MasterCard to pay for everything from lunch, bail money and a speeding ticket, to rollercoaster rides.

‘Safari’ is a slightly less frenetic adventure – a day-long family shopping trip as told from Dad’s point of view: ‘It was like a Safari. Hiking mile after mile. With little or no nourishment. Surrounded by dangerous creatures.’

The endings are consistent for each commercial.

First the voiceover: ‘No other card is accepted in more [eccentric] [wild] places worldwide than MasterCard. Not Visa or American Express.’

The main character also reinforces MasterCard as the card of choice with the line, ‘I guess [I] [we] could use another card, but [I] [we] don’t.’

The final image of each commercial’s cast of characters is shown on the face of the MasterCard, along with cardholder’s name as the tagline – ‘MasterCard. Your Card For Life’ – appears in voiceover and script.

Media placement is handled by Media Buying Services of Toronto.

MasterCard’s French-language assignment is with LG2 of Montreal.