Conceived by advertising agency Clemenger BBDO, the ad attempts to reassert NZ Post's relevance in the modern age. And to do that it's called on the gravitas of UK actor Charles Dance of recent Game Of Thrones fame.
Clemenger BBDO's Sean Keaney says it's only the second ad Dance has ever done, the first being the Rugby World Cup spot that didn't feature the All Blacks. And it's not because he has a soft spot for postal services.
"We approached him and he thought it was a really nice piece of writing. So after that it was just about the logistics of figuring out where he was shooting and getting him over here."
While up to 300 posties will soon be out of a job after mail deliveries were cut back as a result of a ten percent decline in mail volume every year, Keaney says NZ Post has been squirrelling away "getting some things in order" as part of its digital transformation and developing new products to make up for that decline—and embrace some growth areas (recently, due to the increase in the number of parcels being delivered, it unveiled its new eco-friendly delivery tricycle).
The launch ad, which he says is probably the first TV push of any significance for NZ Post since Saatchi & Saatchi's consumer-focused 'Letters' campaign in 2008, is part of an ongoing campaign strategy that will be supported with customer success stories and case studies to show NZ Post can do anything from "solving complex international logistics problems to finding small start-ups their first customers and, of course, sending stuff anywhere in the world". And, to its credit, it includes a self-aware nod to the quaintness of letters.
"People still send them, you know," Dance says in the ad.
Rather than just talking about what NZ Post offers, Keaney says it wanted to demonstrate its products through the stories of its customers and those stories are appearing on its You Can Central content hub, which features businesses like Cookie Time, Mighty Ape, The Warehouse, Hallensteins and Hauora Honey.
"We didn't want to say 'it's all about me'. We needed some proof points."
Murray Pugh, NZ Post's head of marketing and strategy said in a release that while the company is a trusted brand, few people know about all the exciting things it does.
"We wanted a campaign to let the public and our customers see how we’ve helped many iconic New Zealand businesses to find success. The launch had to be fresh, engaging and a little unexpected, so people would sit up and take notice. Clemenger BBDO has done this with room to spare. From sourcing and securing world-class talent and direction, to refining our messaging to convey the breadth of our business, the team has delivered an outstanding, engaging ad that makes me sit forward every time."
An edited version of this story originally appeared on Stoppress.