Be an American; buy a house. So says Quicken Loans, the Detroit, Mich.-based lending firm which is encouraging consumers to buck up and buy in a new ad campaign that broke this week.
It's a bold statement to make after the 2008 housing crisis when Americans were lax about their mortgages and the economy tumbled. But Quicken Loans is urging consumers not to allow any lingering financial fears to cripple them from buying homes.
"It's okay to have some hesitations but take that first step," said Art Steiber, VP-marketing and sponsorships at Quicken Loans. "We're optimistic about the future and we believe America is ready to grow and the timing is right. "
The approach is a departure for Quicken Loans, which has historically focused on products and services in its advertising. "It's intentionally a little bit edgy," said Mr. Steiber, adding that the new strategy was also a big step for the company. "The shift here is to talk more about the brand, what we believe and tell stories that people can relate to."
The push, created by Fallon, kicked off with a spot that first aired during the NCAA Basketball Finals on CBS on Monday, as well as on YouTube and Facebook video.
The ad recounts moments in history when Americans tossed their fears aside in pursuit of their dreams, like walking on the moon and building the first airplane, against the backdrop of a swaying American flag projected on a white picket fence. "None of this makes rational sense," the voice-over says. "It only makes American sense." The commercial then moves on to more relatable moments, like having a child when you still feel like one or leaving a stable job to start your own company.
"Without scary, we don't get to be brave. Buy in," the ad concludes.
The launch spot is aimed at home buyers and potential buyers who are hesitant about investing in a home, Mr. Steiber said. Two more ads will roll out in the coming weeks, he added. One, which tells the story of a couple who overcame their skepticism to buy their first home, is aimed at millennials, while the other caters to existing homeowners.
"We hope people will see themselves and be able to relate to [the ads]," Mr. Steiber said.
The hashtag "#BuyIn" is also being promoted by Quicken Loans on its social channels, and consumers are encouraged to engage with the company about the ad.
Mr. Steiber declined to reveal the budget for the push, but said that it's in line with past campaigns.
Quicken Loans spent $227 million on U.S. measured-media in 2014, according to Kantar Media.