AGF returns to humour

In anticipation of a stronger RSP season this spring, AGF is introducing a humorous branding campaign with a substantially larger media budget than last year's effort.

In anticipation of a stronger RSP season this spring, AGF is introducing a humorous branding campaign with a substantially larger media budget than last year’s effort.

According to Tammy Scott, director of advertising and marketing at the Toronto-based financial firm, the media buy will be half way between where it was in 2003 – when it was at about one-quarter the spend of previous years – and a more auspicious 2001.

The campaign, which continues with the tagline ‘What are you doing after work? Why aren’t you doing it?’ also reflects a more positive mood. Says Scott: ‘We’re much more optimistic about the next few months, so it’s appropriate to go back to a sense of humour.’

One spot in the trio of ads, which launches Jan. 12, begins with a shot of a crane operator and then pans out to show a restaurant that sports a giant fish logo. The crane operator, who apparently would rather be a fisherman, uses his hook to snag the catch.

The advertising is a continuation of AGF’s attempt to reach out to a broader audience by focusing on things other than retirement. To that end, last year AGF created an AfterWorks program, whereby investment advisors walk clients through a series of personality questions to determine what they truly want to do with their lives.

‘When we started advertising in 1997, retirement was the widest doormat, but there has been a real shift,’ says Scott. ‘People need clearer goals. We want to be seen as a company that [will give you] the freedom to pursue your dream.’

Client: AGF

Agency: TBWAToronto

Creative Director: James Spence

Copywriter: Simon Creet

Art Director: Simon Duffy

Agency Producer: Winnie Alford

Production House: Avion Films

Producer: Paola Lazzeri

Director: Tim Hamilton