Scudder Launches Ad Blitz

Monthlong Effort From Doner Aimed at ‘Sandwich Generation’
CHICAGO–Scudder Investments is returning to TV after a two-year break from broadcast with a month-long ad blitz aimed at baby boomers burdened with questions about the future.
The campaign, from Doner Direct, Southfield, Mich., is designed “to be as interruptive as possible,” said Howard Schneider, director of marketing for Scudder Kemper Investments, Boston. The Scudder account is serviced out of Doner’s Baltimore office.
Scudder intends to put a good chunk of its media budget behind a TV, print, and radio schedule that begins today and runs through May 15 in eight markets, including Los Angeles, New York, Boston and Chicago. TV spots will air on cable, primarily news, financial and sports channels; while print goes to financial publications and USA Today. Scudder Kemper Investments spent $30 million last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.
The work in part is aimed at the so-called “sandwich generation,” those baby boomers who financially support college-aged children and elderly parents. TV spots take their cue from print with a voice-over that asks questions common to the target: “What if you want to stop working for a living? What if your kid gets into Harvard? What if your mother needs long-term care?”
One spot shows a businessman on the wing of a 747 aircraft in the desert, pacing as he mulls such queries. Another has a woman sitting on a bench in a field, as a college building looms over her shoulder. The tagline, which has been running in print for about a year, is, “Be ready.”
The idea was to catch the eye of viewers with the striking and strangely juxtaposed settings, said Scott Rasmussen, an executive vice president and creative director with Doner.
“It’s certainly not meant to be a fear strategy. It’s reality-based,” Rasmussen said.
The campaign focuses on people, not the product, although print ads do include return-rate data. The point is to get people in their 30s and 40s to think about getting financial advice, not to lure them with riches.
“This is not a campaign showing, ‘You invest with us, you’re on the Hawaiin Islands or playing golf,’ ” Schneider said. “We’re not presenting a far-fetched situation. The point is, you invest to be able to do the things you want to be doing.” K