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BofA Diversifies Brand Message

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Lopez Negrete Communications encourages Hispanics to reach for the brass ring in its first major multicultural branding campaign for Bank of America.

"Creemos en ti" ("We believe in you") is the tagline for a series of seven Spanish-language television commercials designed to convince Hispanics that Bank of America can help them achieve a better quality of life.

The client's $40 million campaign, which also targets Asians and African Americans, breaks this week on national cable networks Telemundo and Univision and in spot cable markets such as Dallas and Houston. Radio, print and outdoor supports.

Initial spots establish the BofA brand. Subsequent ads will introduce viewers to the client's checking and mortgage services and SafeSend, a remittance program in which Hispanics can establish an account in the U.S. that allows relatives to access funds via a debit card at one of 20,000 locations in Mexico.

The initial 30-second spot guides the viewer through a series of vignettes featuring real people from the U.S. and Latin American countries. The commercial begins and ends with a soccer player, who says, "I believe . . . in being successful." Others who state their beliefs along the way include a nun, a girl running a lemonade stand, a mother holding a baby, a man beside his weathered pickup truck, a blind person with a seeing-eye dog and a wheelchair-bound basketball player.

"Bank of America was created by immigrants for immigrants, so when this company says, 'We believe in you,' it's a powerful message," said Alex Lopez Negrete, chief executive officer and chief creative officer for the Houston shop.

Michael Shapiro, whose previous production credits include work for AT&T, directed the commercials in his first foray into Spanish-language advertising. Guy Kirkland handled art direction for the television and print campaign.

The multi-market push comes on the heels of forecasts indicating minorities will account for about 80 percent of the nation's population growth within the next decade, said John Villanueva, director of multicultural brand and communications for BofA.

"We feel we've got a robust plan that clearly communicates the bank's breakthrough position," Villanueva said.