As tax season descends upon us like a late transit bus, commuters everywhere are being issued a friendly reminder from the Royal Bank of Canada that it might be a good time to think about RRSPs. While ordinarily a reminder like this during tax time might cause a little undue stress, RBC manages to use creativity, colour and simplicity to keep the message stress-free and well-received. If you haven’t already spotted these ads on billboard and bus shelters around Calgary and other Canadian cities, three snapshots are conveniently included below.
The first item the viewer encounters is the creative (nay, ingenious!) twist of typography usage: words like “family,” “health” and “travel” are spelled out with numbers and symbols, employed backwards, upside-down and sideways. Each word is presented upon a blank field of warm colour, and the fine print is tucked away tidily in the white-and-blue swoops that are part of RBC’s consistent branding efforts.
Each ad is accompanied by a concise and simple message summing it all up: “Talk to an advisor about making your RRSP contribution this year,” it might read. Or perhaps: “Our advisors look for what’s important to you, so they can help you create a plan that fits. Speak to an advisor today.” By coupling a creative visual with a straightforward message, the ad has a very high chance of sticking in the viewer’s mind, and even being followed up on.
Each element in this ad speaks “non-intimidating.” It’s refreshing to see a non-traditional colour pallete employed: dimmer shades of summertime colours end up feeling warm, but not obnoxious. With the creative display of numerals and symbols, the ad can almost serve as a recruiting ad for RBC, suggesting that this bank values people who like to play with numbers.
All in all, the simple message, accessible design and creative presentation manages to get viewers into a good mood about money again. Suddenly, instead of numbers spelling out your doom, they’re spelling out words you care about. The ads serve as a reminder that whatever plans you’re making with your finances, it’s important to be working towards your values and dreams, not just wealth accumulation.