In contrast to SunTrust's Super Bowl 50 stresser "Hold Your Breath," Charles Schwab here shows that even a financial firm can bring humor to Super Bowl advertising.
Despite the media buy during a national exaltation of football, the stars are baseball heroes. Schwab decided to use baseball players "in order to defy expectations and help our message stand out within this very competitive environment," Jack Calhoun, exec VP-advertising and brand management at Schwab, said in a release before the game.
"Another unexpected and yet perfectly appropriate use of famous athletes in a financial services spot," Ad Age reviewer Bob Garfield decreed after seeing it. "This one has baseball slugger Barry Bonds hearing voices, a la Field of Dreams. Only they're coming from the PA system. Home-run king Hank Aaron is trying to talk Bonds into retirement before he overtakes the record. Bonds -- true to form -- is only irritated. Big laughs."
Viewers seemed to agree, ranking the commercial's entertainment value in at No. 4 on USA Today's annual Super Bowl Ad Meter -- the only ad in the top five not created for Anheuser-Busch.
The spot, by Omnicom Group's BBDO New York, aired between the coin toss and kickoff in Fox's broadcast of Super Bowl XXXVI, then ran again in the fourth quarter. Schwab also used it during NBC's ensuring coverage of the 19th Olympic Winter Games.
"Advice" followed Charles Schawb and BBDO's 2001 Super Bowl spot, "Princess," starring Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York. Schwab named Omnicom's GSD&M to take over creative duties in April 2002, however, and returned to the Super Bowl sidelines.
Director: Frequent Super Bowl presence Bryan Buckley.
BRAND: Charles Schwab
QUARTER AIRED: Q4