MasterCard waxes nostalgic

The credit card company is running a national campaign featuring retro-style claymation elves to promote its holiday retail discounts.

MasterCard is turning back the clock with old-fashioned claymation characters in its national campaign for the holiday season.

The ‘Save More. Give More.’ ads will be running for four weeks. On TV, MasterCard is splitting the ads between prime time on main networks and specialty channels for viewers in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. Radio is playing in the same markets on two blitz days per week. Print ads will be running in high-traffic publications such as the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star and La Presse. Online, ads will be running on Facebook.

The company will announce large discounts at certain stores on the weekends leading up to Christmas, and the different media will be used to spread the message in separate ways, Nicole Avery, director, brand marketing, MasterCard, tells MiC.

‘TV and online are [meant to generate] overall program awareness, and radio and print are really focusing on getting specific retail offers out; they’re much more promotional, retail-based and closer to point of sale,’ she says. ‘We figured those are better to actually call out specific offers we’re featuring on specific days.’

MacLaren McCann’s Toronto office did the creative for the campaign, and UM’s Toronto office handled the buy. R/GA in New York is responsible for the digital strategy and development of the microsite, which will launch next week, and Facebook engagement.

The claymation spots feature elves getting bonuses from Santa Claus after he saves money because of the MasterCard discounts. The elves are also featured in the print and online ads.

The company chose claymation in the hopes of reminding people of Christmas classics, says Lilian Tomovich, VP, marketing, MasterCard.

‘There’s a lot of nostalgia associated with the old-school holiday movies like Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and it brings a really good feeling to people, and we wanted to recreate that nostalgic feeling and differentiate ourselves in the marketplace versus all the other holiday spots.’