Staff Reporters
Apr 23, 2024

Should Gen Zs make financial trade-offs to navigate this cost-of-living crisis?

This playful National Australia Bank (NAB) campaign by TBWA Melbourne suggests that Gen Z could improve their lot by making financial sacrifices.

National Australia Bank together with TBWA/Melbourne have launched a new campaign 'Wrangle Your Money' that specifically speaks to Gen Z, who are most affected by the cost-of-living crisis. 
Recent findings from ASIC reveal that 82% of Gen Z, in contrast to 70% of other generations, feel financially stressed, but are 2x more likely to want to better manage their finances.
Based on these findings, the campaign consists of a series of shorts ads with the National Australia Bank (NAB) suggesting that making financial trade-offs could be one way for Gen Zs to wrangle a bit of extra money. 
The hero ad, which takes place in the gloomy cinematic setting of a funeral, depicts the drama of a young woman selling her puffer jacket to raise money for her trip to Europe. Other ads in the series show more typical Gen Z financial sacrifices, like selling kebabs, giving up a daily oat latte, and a festival toy. But the main heroine can feel secure in her choices because of NAB's financial tools.

"NAB’s new campaign aims to connect with Gen Z Australians through relatable situations," says Sue Brailsford, head of group brand, NAB. "Whether that's exploring new side hustles, making strategic trade-offs, or implementing spending curbs, our campaign recognises and celebrates this, showing how NAB can help support young Aussies to navigate their financial futures confidently”.

Matt Stoddart, executive creative director at TBWA Melbourne, adds: “Everyone has an opinion on what Gen Zs should or shouldn't be doing with their money. We decided to let Gen Z take control in a way that felt fun, relatable and appropriately funeral-ly”.

Campaign's Take: While the campaign is clearly tongue-in-cheek, it appears to play on the misguided stereotype that young people are financially worse off because they fritter their money away on things like avocado toast and Netflix subscriptions. Or in the case of this campaign, clothes, oat lattes and kebabs. While playful and designed to be humourous, the campaign perpetuates a lazy stereotype.

Why should Gen Z have to rely on financial trade-offs and side hustles in order to scrape by? How about if there were more jobs that weren't zero contract hours and paid an actual living wage? What if housing was actually affordable, and inflation had not caused the price of goods to shoot through the roof? That's the reality. This campaign seems to suggest that young Aussies could fix their finances through making financial sacrifices, without acknowledging the current reality. It's a sad indictment of our broken economic model that young people should have to sell their possessions in order to wrangle enough money to scrape by. The campaign could do better by acknowledging that truth. 

Production & Creative agency: TBWA\Melbourne
Chief Creative Officer: Paul Reardon
Executive Creative Director: Matt Stoddart
Creative & Director: Kale McRedmond
Creative: James Southey
Editor: Chris Gillingham
Head of Planning: Virginia Pracht
Senior Producer: Janine Wertheim
Production Manager: Phoebe Graham
Managing Director: Ricci Meldrum
Client Partner: Sarah Tukua
Senior Business Director: Jade Mittermair
Business Manager: Sophie Ford
Intern: Lillian Busby

Rumble Studios
Client: NAB
Suzana Ristevski: Chief Marketing Officer
NAB - Group Brand Marketing 
Sue Brailsford: Head of Group Brand
Jess Hughes: Manager, Brand Campaign Delivery
Alastair Sykes: Manager, Brand Management
Johannes Samson: Senior Consultant, Brand Management
Mitch Anderson: Senior Consultant, Brand Campaign Delivery
Lizzie Barclay: Consultant, Brand Campaign Delivery
Susanna Hondrokostas: Manager Brand Identity, Group Brand
Media agency: Mindshare


Campaign Asia

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