After Its Financial Interventions Commercials, KeyBank Picks a New Agency

The Richards Group takes on creative, media, digital

Following a review, independent agency The Richards Group in Dallas has won creative, media and digital duties for KeyBank.

Richards has formed a dedicated division to handle the business, and a digital campaign is set to launch in the second quarter. "This is an opportunity to be bold—to break through the usual conventions of bank advertising," said David Hall, who is heading that division.

"We took some wise counsel from (agency principal) Stan Richards in making our decision," said Tom Wennerberg, executive vice president of marketing at KeyBank. "Stan advised us during the review to hire an agency, not a campaign. And that's what we did. The Richards Group as an agency, and especially the team that will be working with us, has a long and wonderful history of being true partners."

The client spent nearly $6.5 million on domestic ads in the first three quarters of 2015, topping its total outlay for all of the previous year, per Kantar Media.

KeyBank's last major campaign launched last summer, with TV spots featuring impromptu "interventions" to help ordinary folks avoid financial blunders. Interpublic-owned ad shop Mithun created the work, and the shop's media arm, Compass Point Media, handled the buying. (Mithun will soon be rebranded McCann Minneapolis.)

Consultancy The Bedford Group oversaw the review and said Mithun participated in the process.