CommBank uses nostalgia and Bugsy Malone

Rachael Micallef
By Rachael Micallef | 21 September 2015

CommBank has unveiled the next phase in its 'Can' campaign, with a nostalgia-heavy piece asking consumers to think back to what they wanted to be as children.

The “When We Believe, We Can” campaign by M&C Saatchi builds on the brand's 'Can' positioning with the piece showing children in a variety of occupations: astronauts, doctors and film directors.

The backing track to the campaign is Bugsy Malone's You Give a Little Love, with the ad focusing on the lines “We could have been anything that we wanted to be, and it's not too late to change.”

The ad aims to tap into those dreams consumers had as children and suggest that with help from CommBank, they can still reach those goals.

The campaign marks the first work for the bank under the leadership of Andy diLallo who was named as M&C Saatchi's chief creative officer in April.

Commonwealth Bank’s General Manager Brand, Sponsorship and Marketing Services, Stuart Tucker believes the latest campaign demonstrates CommBank’s ongoing commitment to the Can brand positioning.

“Ever since we launched Can in 2012, we’ve been reminding Australians that they can achieve amazing things when they ignore ‘Can’t’ and believe that they ‘Can’.  And since that time, Can has continued to set us apart from the competition.

“The campaign celebrates the innate positivity of children and reminds us that we can still be anything we want to be,” he said.

The campaign launched with the 60” film on television, and will continue for 6 weeks through television, cinema, OOH, digital and social channels.

CommBank's ad campaign have relied heavily on a strong music score in the past, with its October 2013 campaign featuring a three minute song penned by M&C Saatchi and sung by finalist from The Voice Steve Clisby.

Commonwealth Bank was named as the most valuable bank brand in Australia earlier this year, in the Brand Finance Banking 500 report, with its strong investment in the 'Can' campaign part of the reason for its strong ranking.

At the time,Tucker said since launching the Can campaign in May 2012, the bank has seen a rise in both brand health measure and an increase in brand considerations.

“We know that the can campaign has created a broad brand platform which enables us to reach customers from all walks of life – from youth to parents to businesses,” Tucker said.

“The can ethos is bigger than marketing alone, it’s become an intrinsic part of CommBank’s DNA and is at the centre of how our people help our customers move forward.”


Client: Commonwealth Bank
Agency: M&C Saatchi

Chief Creative Officer: Andy DiLallo
Regional Creative Director: Tom McFarlane

Executive Creative Director: Ben Welsh
Writer/Creative Director: Andy Flemming.

Writer/Head of Art: Christy Peacock

Art Director: Michael Andrews

Music: SoundTree, London

Post Production: Alt, Sydney/Brisbane

Sound Design: Song Zu, Sydney
Production Company: Goodoil

Director: Hamish Rothwell
Executive Producer: Sam Long

DOP: Crighton Bone

Editor: Bernard Garry, The Editors

Agency Producer: Loren August

Managing Partner: Mim Haysom

Group Account Director: Hayley Mathews

Group Strategy Director: Kate Smither

Strategy Director: Alex Roper

Costume Stylist: Shani Gyde

Photography: Andreas Smetana

Retouching: Cream
Media: Ikon

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