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Ad Age | July 30, 2021

MassMutual airs funny financial planning ads in Olympics

The financial services providers airs its first campaign from Grey during Olympics

The financial services provider airs its first campaign from Grey during Olympics

Just three months after appointing Grey as lead creative agency-of-record, MassMutual is out with its first campaign from the new relationship. A series of spots, running during the Olympics, take a humorous look at the perils of not planning for your financial future.

In one commercial, a couple debates which of their three young children will be successful enough to help provide financial assistance to their parents post-retirement. Spoiler alert—it’s not Tom, who is painting next to a sprinkler, Danny, who is stuck in a lawn chair, or Maggie, who throws a rock at an active beehive. “Should we...have another one?” the father asks after they’ve exhausted all possibilities.

That spot was created from MassMutual’s research finding that 55% of parents expect financial assistance from their kids during retirement years.

“So much of what we see becomes a sea of sameness in financial services—it was getting really emotional for a while with what we were seeing around the pandemic,” says Jennifer Halloran, head of marketing and brand at MassMutual. The marketer is bucking that trend with a lighthearted approach. "We wanted to find a way to put a bit of data in there, add humor to relax the conversation but bring up that awareness," she says.

Another spot looks at the importance of having help during a disabling illness or suffering an injury. A third explores the reality of how rare athletic scholarships are for college and how parents might want to plan ahead. The three spots fall under MassMutual’s “Uncomfortable Truths” brand platform.

"A lot of people are making decisions on things that are wake-up calls," says Halloran. "We spent the last 18 months on a big wake-up call, how do we bring up some of those things and make it more positive?"

In addition to the TV work, MassMutual will be running the campaign on the radio and social channels as well as in some print publications. The brand worked with Hungry Man’s Productions’ Hank Perlman to direct the commercials.

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