Hardbacon wants you to make more rewarding comparisons

The financial app's first national campaign aims to get Canadians to stop picking the first product offered to them and "leaving money on the table."


Personal finance app Hardbacon is going national to tout the benefits of comparison shopping.

The app, which is best known for appearing as part of a pitch on an episode of Dragons’ Den, allows users to compare different financial services such as credit cards, bank services, online brokers and robo-advisors, directly through their bank accounts.

In the brand’s first national campaign, devised by Montreal-based content agency EKO productions, four animated vignettes take the form of “keeping up with the Jones’s”-style, “pointless comparisons,” whether they’re about a neighbour’s lawn or brother-in-law’s fancy sports car. The spots suggest the same thing could and should be done with credit cards, brokers, bank accounts and mortgages.

“Comparing made sense [with the creative] as at the end of the day, I feel like shopping for financial products is a commodity – like shopping for sugar,” says Hardbacon CEO Julien Brault. “Sugar is sugar,” he maintains, and it’s best to, for example, grab the lowest insurance rate regardless of which institution is offering it.

The campaign, “Compare. Make Money,” is based around the insight that Canadians leave a lot of money on the table by selecting the first financial product offered to them, rather than taking the time out to look for the best fees and rates, according to Brault.

A lot of people know about the Hardbacon brand, he says, but didn’t know exactly why they should come to use it, Brault says, and it’s targeting those curious about personal finances, between the ages of 25 and 45.

The main competitor, according to Brault, is Ratehub, but it’s a crowded space with the likes of Rates.ca and Greedy Rates vying for attention. According to Brault, those lead generation sites have a lot of solid content and are great at providing that, but Hardbacon’s differentiator is a technology platform that directly connects to users’ accounts to provide more accurate financial insights, and that Hardbacon can answer specific questions – like how much one might expect to pay in brokerage fees – rather than merely provide advice around general principles.

The Canada-wide TV and digital initiative launches today and will run into fall, with creative on Facebook and YouTube, as well as with targeted TV ads through media properties such as Radio Canada’s Zone économie, hosted by Gérald Fillion, and on L’Indice McSween with Quebec personality Pierre-Yves McSween.

Hardbacon launched as an app for retail investors and when COVID struck, it transformed into an app for Canadians to take better control of their finances.