BBDO Gets Emotional for Wells Fargo

By Erik Oster 

BBDO launched a new campaign for Wells Fargo with an emotional ad about adoption.

The 60-second spot, entitled “Learning Sign Language” stars a real life lesbian couple learning sign language. At the end of the ad it is revealed they’re learning sign language because they’re an adopting a girl who is deaf (played by a girl who is deaf in real life). “We’re going to be your new mommies,” they say at the emotional climax of the ad, before a voiceover ties the scene to the bank with the line, “Everyone works hard for a reason. Working together, we can help you prepare financially for when two becomes three.”

The spot follows the trend of inclusiveness in advertising, as evidenced by Hallmark’s recent Valentine’s Day effort and Droga5’s “This is Wholesome” for Honeymaid last year. “Learning Sign Language,” which makes its broadcast debut Monday, is just the first of nine spots which will encompass the yearlong campaign, BBDO’s first large scale push for the brand since winning agency of record duties last March. Other ads in the campaign tell the stories of small-business owners juggling a heavy workload and, like “Learning Sign Language,” emphasize diversity — perhaps in part to attempt to reconcile the company’s history of alleged racial discrimination in its lending practices.

“We really felt that this is a great way to both represent the notion of family and adoption—which is obviously a very important part of our community and many of our customers’ lives—and we do it in a way that felt very true to our perspective about diversity and inclusion,” chief marketing officer Jamie Moldafsky told Adweek.