Traders Buoy MetaMarkets Ads

Mutual-fund traders may not spring to mind as the most sought-after talent for TV spots. Still, a new commercial for an online investment house puts a face on the people who do the wheeling and dealing.

Butler, Shine & Stern in Sausalito, Calif., saw the raw potential of traders and used them in a breaking campaign for MetaMarkets, a Web site that allows users to interact with mutual-fund traders in real time. The $5 million push features seven TV spots.

“We wanted to present this as an entirely new investment entity that’s part resource and part community,” said John Butler, agency partner and creative director. “You can watch these traders live in action on the Web. This will help you become a better investor because you can watch the experts do it.”

Butler said the spots were shot over a single day, leaving little room for error or multiple takes. But he said the traders were more than up to the task. “We tried to give these guys a bit of a personality, and they worked well,” he said.

In one spot, a trader is shown on a live Internet camera. On the right side of the screen, text that looks like an e-mail message records a conversation between trader and user.

The user’s note reads, “Tom, good job buying the dip in tech stocks. Now how about buying a comb?” The camera then zooms in on the trader’s messy hair. The spot ends with the tagline “Investing out loud.”

“With mutual funds, you usually only get something every six months in the mail,” Butler said. “With this, it’s full disclosure on a daily basis. So we were able to put a face on this company because you get to see these guys working.”

The spots will run nationally on CNBC, Butler said.

MetaMarkets was among a slew of accounts the shop picked up in the first half of this year.

Separately, the agency has won the $5 million Nuance Communications account. The company, based in Menlo Park, Calif., provides technology that makes certain Internet data accessible from telephones.