Just in time for the hockey season, MasterCard has launched two new “Priceless” ads celebrating the game.
The first spot, “Timeline,” celebrates the career of Bobby Orr and will play only during games at Canadian NHL arenas. The spot shows a close-up of a line unrolling along someone’s skin with landmark dates in Orr’s career appearing along the way. Eventually the camera pulls back to reveal the lines as the scars on Orr’s knees as he sits in a hockey dressing room, while the super “Earning your place in history: priceless” appears on screen.
The second, which is running on TV and launched Monday night, evokes the powerful emotions of a hockey team between periods during a big game. Called “Pep Talk,” the spot shows a sombre team sitting in a dressing room in silence with the coach standing in the middle of the floor seemingly ready to talk. Instead he just stares at them while the price of the player’s skates, elbowpads and mouthguard apprear on screen. Eventually the buzzer sounds to call the players to the ice; the team rises in unison and marches out, while the super “Knowing what they need to hear: priceless” appears.
The ads are part of an annual integrated campaign from MasterCard focusing on hockey. Lili Tomovich, MasterCard’s vice-president of brand marketing, said the sport is a proven way to connect with Canadian consumers. “The passion Canadians have for hockey, you don’t see anywhere else in the world,” she said.
MasterCard asked MacLaren McCann for creative that shows how the passion it takes to compete is “priceless.”
To pitch its ideas for the campaign, MacLaren invited Tomovich and the rest of the MasterCard marketing team to a community hockey rink in Toronto. MacLaren set up a table at centre ice, handed out parkas, and presented the pitch. Tomovich said the rink went silent when MacLaren showed MasterCard the Orr brief, “The entire team went ‘That’s it. That’s a winner.’ ”
“Bobby’s career has been ‘priceless,’ and that’s why he works so well with the MasterCard brand,” Tomovich said.
“Timeline” coincides with Orr’s 60th birthday. The commercial has already played at the Air Canada Centre and will play in NHL arenas across the country this season, as well as on nine social networking sites, including YouTube.
“Pep-Talk” will run as a 60-second during the first games of Canada’s NHL teams, and as a 30-second ad afterwards.