ANZ 'Barbara lives in Bank World' campaign launches this weekend via M&C Saatchi

Picture 639.pngANZ launches a new campaign this weekend via M&C Saatchi, Melbourne which will attempt to challenge perceptions that consumers have of banks and exposes some of the frustrations they experience at 'other' banks.

ANZ relaunched its brand late last year with a new positioning line, 'we live in your world', paving the way for the latest instalment from ANZ. This campaign provides evidence of the Bank's new brand promise, demonstrating ANZ's understanding of what affects consumers, what's going on in their world, and how ANZ are striving to provide simpler, more transparent banking.

The campaign, which is comprised of two 45 second TVC's is extended through radio, outdoor, press and online. The TV, directed by Paul Middleditch, stars Genevieve Morris, Australian comedian, whose character Barbara the bank manager from Bank World, personifies everything that is bad about banks. The result, commercials that take a light heighted look at the industry and offer up a solution in ANZ.
TITLE: Barbara lives in Bank World
CLIENT: Paul Riley (Head of Retail Product Marketing)
Linda Manos (Senior Manager Brand & Advertising)
Melissa Hendrickson (Senior Manager Marketing Deposits)
Lucy Gribble (Senior Advertising and Integrated Campaigns Manager)
CREATIVE: Steve Crawford (Creative Director)
Doogie Chapman (Senior Copywriter)
Tony Leishman (Senior Art Director)
ACCOUNT SUPERVISOR: Kimberley Milburn (Group Account Director) Daniel
Loukidis (Account Director) 
AGENCY PRODUCER: Karen Muxworthy
EDITOR: Peter Whitmore. The Editors. 
DIRECTOR: Paul MIddleditch, Plaza Films   
PRODUCTION CO PRODUCER: Peter Masterton, Plaza Films
SOUND: Barry Stewart Sound Reservoir


A Customer said:

Ha ha ha. First you have to change your staff to little happy blue bouncy people.
I've been told a few little fibs and been given runarounds by ANZ staff just a few weeks ago. Are they all new?

Anonymous said:

Had a giggle at this.

Much more believable than the windows 7 thingy.

Anonymous said:

average example of banks unconvincingly acting human.

Bank Customer in the Real World said:

Hang you heads in shame - both client and agency

Anonymous said:

great talent...funny spot

Anonymous said:

Does anyone involved here honestly believe for a minute that this unfunny, ill-conceived, poorly acted and predictably graded piece of outdated slop is actually going to change customer behaviour? WANK World, more likely. Get real. Banks ARE all the same. Always will be. Trust me, ANZ is as guilty of the gouging and the game playing as any of them. This is just a further insult to a public who’ve had their bank bullshit radar up for years now. They’ve already seen and heard it all – you KNOW this. The banks’ long history of treating customers as little more than helpless prey has pretty much mangled their collective image forever. They should forget about the stunts and the hollow promises. Their best advertising bet is to stop trying to seem ‘nice’ and ‘human’; and take a page out of the Bloody Volvo Drivers book by turning their faults into a badge of honour. “Yes, we’re greedy, but no more so than violent home invaders.” Or “Sure, we’ve clawed back that interest rate cut, but would you rather be in debt to your in-laws?” And so on. They need to embrace their ugliness with both hands if they’re ever going to be perceived as anything more than a resented grudge purchase.

phil said:

10.32 spot on.
There is no tangible benefit here for a bank customer.
Is bank staff shaking your hand a benefit?
I think not. And I've never seen it happen anyway.
Some honesty would be a huge differentiator in the category....

A? said:

'ANZ' starts with A ... so ... they are, "abank" too.

Is this deep or what!!!

Crash and burn banks!

Fucking discrace ANZ and Scratchies.

Read your research and fix yourselves!!!

Anonymous said:

Just another bank ad, ANZ who? Bring back the old commercials i'd say, at least they had a benefit for consumers and a strong idea.
Crap talent, not funny spot.

Anonymous said:

Astonishing... what is it about Australian advertisers that they think consumers are persuaded by ads that show 95% problem and 5% supposed solution? Simply astonishing...

Sore said:


Why why why must banks keep doing this?

We don't want them to be our friends. We don't want them to empathise.

We just want you to not lose our savings and otherwise stay the fuck out of our lives.

Anybody who's ever had to open a business account, buy a house or perform any financial transaction more complex than putting a coin in a moneybox will look at this nonsense and start to gently steam between the ears.


jape said:

Oh, come on, people. Saatchi lives in ad world. What did you expect? When real copywriters start going into real banks and talking to real customers rather than relying on the narrow prism research offers, you might get some real advertising.

King Abdullah said:

OMG.....where to start!

Truly dreadful that an agency believes that this absolute fabrication of truth will fly.

Why do they think that people will swallow this stuff. This is just simply untrue.

Anonymous said:

More clients on the credits than creatives.

Welcome to advertising, circa 2010.

The Cynic. said:

The Ad, not funny, not entertaining, not informative, not believable, not, just not.

Now imagine the throng of people that brought it to life, the late night meetings, giving up time with their families, the passionate pitch, endless pre-production meetings, what colour will her pants be and the many memo's about it, the secret personal dramas that played out behind the scenes, who's sleeping with who, who hates i'm entertained.

The Cynic said:

Actually...."No" with a silent K was mildly amusing.

Anonymous said:

What 10:20 is trying to say is; 'It gets 100% for being shit!'

Anonymous said:

agency & client have lost the plot, you don't live in my world and you never will...

Anonymous said:

The best ad I ever saw was for my bank the Nab stating they were abolishing over draw fees.I Hate the Nab, now I hate them a little less.

The Big Show said:

Nice work Loukidis.
Word up your mates to throw some positive comments in next time.

Why?? said:

I am an ANZ customer and want to know if anyone at ANZ headquarters has taken a trip to Rochester in Victoria to sample their customer service standards??? When you get the feeling that entering the branch to conduct business is inconveniencing the staff from continuing yet another inane conversation about how badly treated they are and how so and so is a prick for setting Sales Targets in a corporate environment. I have never experienced a cheerful welcome or even an attempt at making conversation. I invite anyone from ANZ to come and talk to me and see how my business operates with engaged and dynamic people wanting to serve people. Retrain or retrench this lot and stick your adds in the oops file!!

Mitch said:

I think the thing I love most about the Ad is that the customer requested an account with NO fees and was unhappy that she didn't get one. Really, I'm still amazed that people think they can get whatever they want from a company for free but I digress.

Doesn't the ANZ account the ad is selling have a monthly account fee?

Seems like the ANZ lives in Bank World too.

sean paxton said:

anyone who says that this is a shit add has brain damage. Genevieve Morris is a freak actor and comedian.
i would like to see any of you do better

Anonymous said:

Mitch: account fees are a scam, they don't relate to operating costs. Financial institutions take advantage of the fact they are a necessity–try getting paid without one. If banks charged no fees whatsoever they'd still make record profits lending out our cash. So using my money and then charging me for the privilege is rude.

Sean! If you think it's smart to insult your audience in a well crafted piece you'd be better off watching films. Advertising's role is to inform and hopefully influence the viewer to act.

Anonymous said:

I think a lot of you need to lighten up! This Ad is funny, Genevieve is brilliant! Especially in the second one.

Anonymous 2 said:

This ad may not make you trust ANZ much more, but it's very funny and let's face it, more than 3/4 of the ads in a typical ad break are so stupid or intolerable that I think this is a refreshing change. By the way, does anyone know where I can find the second one on the internet? It's funnier than this one and it doesn't seem to be anywhere.

Brent said:

First of all I must say i am a customer serice employee (not from ANZ)

All I can say if is feel for barbara

She is employed by her emploee to tow the company line,

In doing this she is just following her buisness rules / role statement.

All I wish for is for customers / applicants of any area, to realise the person they are speaking to doesnt make the rules / legislation of what they are advising you on, they are enforced by rules and regulations beyond their control.

So treat them as a human, not as an enemy, as is the the way of the times!

Anonymous said:

oh for god sake chill out. its so funny and barbara is a scream. typical of todays boring conservative opinions. get a life and laugh more.

kathy said:

i love barbara! i think she's hilarious and these ad's crack me up. but then, im not an ANZ customer....

Kelly said:

I absolutely love this ad!
This ad cracks me up each time I see it, particularly the second one. "I'm in a meeting!" better than the soppy Westpac ads.....

BTW I don't bank at ANZ....

Sean said:

I love Barbara, I think she's a classic in the same vein as the "not happy Jan" lady. I think the ad with the guy is the better of the two. I like the tag line "Barbara lives in bank world".

Now, in real life, they're all probably just the same. I don't have to go into a branch often at all - the last time I needed two was when my bank sent me an SMS saying that I had used my card in an ATM that had been fitted with a skimmer. I needed to change my card PIN and also remove the $200 daily limit they'd put on the card as a precaution.
I think they handled it perfectly.
They sent me an SMS - this was good - timely - I got something in the mail about three days later.
When I went into the branch, they had one of those greeter type people that directed me to the right place - they knew what was going on and how to solve my problem.
And I was in and out in no time.
Frankly, I was pleasantly surprised.
And it wasn't ANZ.

Eric said:

These ad's give me a laugh every time.
Genevieve Morris was born for this role!
Love her sense of empathy (or lack thereof) ... "awww. That's what you signed up for!!" Probably honed over many years of dealing with Joe Public on a daily basis. She must have done some research 'in branch' for this role - she's got the slightly downtrodden, defensive, heard-this-crap-a-million-times-before attitude of bank branch staff down pat. Either that or she spent a month on public transport as a tram/bus driver ... "my fare is going to cost HOW much??"
Brings to mind the classic Carol Beer from Little Britain "Computer says no, cough".

I feel sorry for bank staff if they're meant to live up to the last 10 seconds of the ad (vomit) which certainly ain't the understaffed reality of Bank World and which customers are just as likely to swallow as a turd.
I do think they should make a sequel, maybe poor Barbara in therapy and the lady customer jetting of to the Maldives with the extra $36 ANZ saved her in fees.

Anonymous said:

The second ad is much better and quite funny. ANZ have set high standards from these ads and whether they will be able to follow through at branch level will be quite hard. I think most people can relate these ads to alot of companies they deal with or work in.

Anonymous said:

my name is barbara and i am offended hehehe :)

Anonymous said:

Do ANZ bank really think their bank is different?

I am not an ANZ customer, but had to call them recently - and I got Barbara!

Another Barbara said:

I too am a Barbara and I am appalled at this ad. Glad I am not a Barbara who does work in banking. I don't use banks anyway have not for years. Happy with my credit union - where I am a person known to them and not just a number.

Anonymous said:

I LOVE THIS AD!! Everyone lighten up & laugh, laugh, laugh!! So what if it's not serious - I'm happy it's not! It is the only Ad I don't channel surf thru. Congratulations!!

Anonymous said:

I LOVE THIS AD!! Everyone lighten up & laugh, laugh, laugh!! So what if it's not serious - I'm happy it's not! It is the only Ad I don't channel surf thru. Congratulations!!

Lesley said:

I love Barbara - she is so funny!

I love the ANZ, and I love this advert - haaaahaaa.

Thank goodness for ATMS ;-o)

Anonymous said:

Very clever ads, but to make an ad like this is an admission of guilt on the banks part. They are displaying the kind of service we've put up with in bank world, and the mush at the end.. just looks silly.

hammo said:

It's another great example of the creative team, doing a great job.... showing how clever they are, and the client's brief comes last.
We all love Barbara, but who gives a stuff about the bank..... she could be doing bake beans.... we'd still love her.

As for banks... they know we hate them.... there just pissing on bush fires and hope some how, some day, we may remember there brand instead of the friggin day light robbery

Another Customer Service Team said:

We love Barbara and would rather go to her bank than to any other. Maybe it's because we work in customer service ourselves and Barbara is the only one who actually tells customers what we all think. It won't make us go to ANZ but it makes us laugh - what a pity they had to finish it with the fake sugar at the end.

Banks said:

Can we have some more barbra from bank world adds there great

Brett said:

This Concept is just amazine for Advertising, it's about time we started to enjoy the advertising within Australia.

A relative of mine is a member of ANZ and admits (his experience) with this provider is very similar to the add itself, so my advice to those who may feel this is a bad thing look in the mirror. Remember Truth does hurt!!! and adds like this should become more frequent. I would consider looking at them because of it!

discontent said:

Its all crap. Just going off on a tangent, ANZ have become increasingly cunning and deceptive. Internet and phone banking records and balances never match, they make unauthorised transactions between user accounts for random amounts at random times and can never explain why when qeueried. Just yesterday while waiting in line for an atm at ridgehaven SA, the guy before me had his card swallowed only for it to be spat out as he drove off. Luckily i stopped him and gave him his card then used the atm myself for a similar thing to happen. The 1st 'attempted' transaction of mine appeared to fail, the screen displayed trans cancelled. The next attempt succeeded but having checked my balance and trans history, my acc actually HAS been debited twice. Not the 1st time this shits happend with my ANZ accounts but fuck its the LAST! Byebye ANZ, you have become merely dog faeces on my boot.

Anonymous said:

Has everyone lost their sense of humour. These ads are hysterical. Come on people loosen up. I love Barbara and want to see more of her

Anonymous said:

OMG they should sell "Barbara - lives in bankworld" T Shirts

I would buy 1

Liz said:

Love the Barbara from bankworld ads, and yes i would have one of those t shirts also. Keep it up, bring on the ads

Jill Evans said:

We all love the Barbara ANZ ads, they give us a great laugh, also I have never taken much notice of ANZ ads before and we certainly remember these ones , I'd buy a Barbara Tshirt, bring on more . Great fun !!! ha ha

Manfred said:

I absolutely LOVE this add. Great work from A bank.

Alan said:

ANZ needs to get away from being hopeless and un-human if we are to ever believe this advert.

JLA said:

Barbara from Bank World ads are working, as far as i'm concerned. You only have to say jokingly to someone 'aawww, not my problem!' and they get it! everyone knows it's an ANZ ad. so the brand name (ANZ) is in your head (whether you love or hate the ad) and Barbara has become an easily recognisable icon (visually and verbally) for the brand. which means success. the 3rd ad where she's in the car is hilarious. these ads always bring a smile to my face, as I can see them for what they are... an advertisement to promote something. very, very clever.

Maz from Bank World said:

Barbara is an idol for bankers everywhere... thanks ANZ for bringing us Barbara. But I hardly associate the bank with ANZ. She is the animated version of your everyday bank staff, we can all relate to her because at some point in our careers we have used one of her lines! I know i have... "too late, already in the system". Go Babs! By far the most sucessful ads ever :)

Anonymous said:


Anonymous said:

I love the Barbara and Julian Ads. In fact, I'd love to see another add with Julian and Barbara together.

Anonymous said:

ha ha ha

Horizon said:

I'm not from Saatchi or ANZ to start off. I find most of the comments here lie on tactical campaigns. This is a brand campaign so the approach is different I'm afraid. As a matter of fact, even though we do not like banks, when we get great customer service (yes, it does happen) few times, we do rave about it to our friends. A brand strategy has to start from the organisation itself especially when it is people focused. Let the tagline breathe. While you guys may not notice it but a good brand campaign for banks do get people to put them in consideration factor. Let's put it this way, we all need a bank account.

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