LendingTree Spots Take Unexpected Turns

ATLANTA Unexpected humorous twists punctuate Mullen’s latest round of television spots for LendingTree.

The work breaks this month and continues the tagline “When banks compete, you win” that the company has used since Mullen, an Interpublic Group shop in Wenham, Mass., won the account after a review seven years ago. The client in Charlotte, N.C., spends about $95 million annually in measured media.

“We decided to promote the fact that LendingTree has 24/7 phone access to personal lending consultants, who are available throughout the entire loan process and who work for the customer, not the bank,” said Jim Hartrich, a managing partner at Mullen. “Try getting that kind of objective, round-the-clock service from a mortgage broker or your local bank.”

In one spot, a banker visits an elderly man at his home to discuss the latter’s mortgage refinancing. The elderly man informs the banker that he has decided to use LendingTree instead. The banker, stunned, says, “But, Dad, I’m your son.” The man replies, “I know you are Billy. I know,” then returns to reading his newspaper.

A second spot depicts a woman approaching a loan officer in a bank to discuss her home equity situation. She sits down at the man’s desk and announces she is going to use LendingTree instead of the bank. “But, Karen,” the banker replies. “You work here.” She answers, “Yeah, awkward. Isn’t it?”

The third spot shows a man walking through the bank when a loan officer recognizes him and asks if he is there to discuss his mortgage. The man tells the banker he has decided to use LendingTree instead. “We’ve been your bank for years,” the banker says. “You can’t just walk away.” The man explains that he isn’t actually leaving the bank. “Since your bank is part of the LendingTree network, you can compete over me, too. I want you to know, I’ll be pulling for you. Good luck, buddy.”

The spots begin running on prime-time and early morning broadcast and cable programs. The campaign will continue through the summer.

Ted Jendrysik was group creative director and copywriter on the spots. Jim Amadeo, also a group creative director, served as art director.