PR and advertising Oscars gives NAB’s ‘Break-up’ campaign top gong
National Australia Bank’s ‘Break-up’ campaign has been recognised at the world’s biggest advertising and PR awards, the Cannes Lions, for changing perceptions of the bank and its rivals.
Other Aussie winners were Leo Burnett (for its work on a Diageo fund-raising effort for Queensland flood victims) and Happy Soldiers for its Tontine pillows campaign, which sought to remind people that pillows age, and provide the solution of stamping products with a ‘best before’ date so people know when to change them.
The campaign showed how every pillow has its own ecosystem of dead skin cells ‘’and the things that feed off them”. Slogans from the Tontine campaign were “You're not the only one who loves your pillow" and “As you grow to love your pillow, it just grows".
NAB says its campaign, by advertising giant Clemenger BBDO Melbourne, led to an increase in customers. It was awarded the PR Grand Prix award, ahead of of 818 other entries.
Cannes Public Relations Jury president Dave Senay said the campaign – which started on social media before moving to traditional media – understood that “the way to win was to reverse the power of the competition against it, and thereby underscore the difference.”
"What was so wonderful about this entry was its full use of all channels of communications in a timely and clever way,” Senay said.
NAB’s entry, shown on the Cannes Lions website, says the idea was to embrace the idea that the big four were in bed together to crush competition, and turn it to the company’s advantage.
The entry details how a tweet from a NAB employee ruing an impending decision that will hurt somebody’s feelings was picked up gleefully by competitors and the media, but was in fact an entrée to a full-blown campaign about how the bank was ‘breaking up’ with the other big banks.
Beyond advertising in traditional media and online, the NAB advertised on yachts on Sydney Harbour and from banners on helicopters, and also established a ‘break-up’ blog where people could set up accounts on the spot. Mock ‘break-ups’ by NAB employees also piqued the public’s interest.