Watch Out Hamburger Helper, Midas Has a Talking Hand Now Too

New campaign is The Martin Agency's first work for the chain

Midas and The Martin Agency are putting their faith in a talking hand.

A new campaign breaking tonight uses a disembodied golden hand with a face in its palm to represent the auto repair chain’s “Midas touch.” The character appears in two TV spots and other types of ads, including promotional signs inside the chain’s waiting rooms.

In one TV ad, the hand talks to a thirtysomething guy about what may have caused his car’s engine light to turn on. He then offers to drive the guy to Midas before realizing, “I have no feet. Really didn’t think this through.”

In another ad, the hand knocks on the front door of a house, asking the homeowner why his car isn’t in the driveway. “It’s in the shop,” the homeowner explains. “It cost me an arm and a leg.” The floating hand then deadpans, “That’s hilarious,” before suggesting that he go to Midas next time.

“We want to keep an endearing quality to him. But he also knows what he’s talking about,” said Mike Lear, the creative director on the campaign. “He’s kind of like your uncle, [who says], ‘Hey, these tires aren’t looking good. You need to take care of them.’”

For the role, Martin cast voiceover professional Sean Donnellan, who not only supplied the voice but also the face and even the hand. Donnellan, who emerged from a casting pool of hundreds, also is an actor and a stand-up comedian.

The campaign, which revives the brand's classic "Trust the Midas touch" tagline, also includes online ads and social media efforts. Talking hand represents Midas' first work from Martin since the Interpublic Group shop became lead creative agency in August after a review.

Martin inherited the business from Moroch, which continues to plan and buy media for Midas. LionMaus handles social media marketing. Midas typically spends about $40 million in media each year.

Midas, a unit of TBC Corp., has some 1,500 outlets in the U.S. and Canada.