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MediaRadar’s 12 Ads of Christmas: 11 Cards a-Swiping

MediaRadar’s 12 Ads of Christmas: 11 Cards a-Swiping

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You’ve entered MediaRadar’s alternate reality of “12 Days of Christmas” – our very own 12 Ads of Christmas.

This is our second post in the series, following our first article about the year’s best holiday car ads entitled 12 Engines Humming

Before we dive into our 11 favorite bank and credit card ads showing around the holiday season, let’s remind ourselves of the original jingle that got us here…

“On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me,
Twelve Drummers Drumming,
Eleven Pipers Piping,
Ten Lords a-Leaping,
Nine Ladies Dancing,
Eight Maids a-Milking,
Seven Swans a-Swimming,
Six Geese a-Laying,
Five Gold Rings,
Four Calling Birds,
Three French Hens,
Two Turtle Doves,
And a Partridge in a Pear Tree!”

In MediaRadar’s rendition of this tune, Eleven Pipers Piping turn into 11 Cards a-Swiping. 

While these ads don’t necessarily relate directly to Christmas, they do play on the general sentiments of the season – anticipation, excitement, and joy.

Santa is to kids as credit cards are to adults. Both stir up excitement, whether it’s the anticipation of receiving the perfect gift or of escaping the stresses and monotony of our everyday lives for a little while.

1. Visa – “Young Fan”

Aside from the many gifts that get passed from person to person during the holiday season, sometimes it’s the small, quick, and generous gestures that make all the difference…

In this ad from Visa, famous NFL player, Eli Manning, deceives his teammate, Saquon Barkley, into buying a young fan a pack of gum from the pharmacy. Ignoring the trickery and focusing on the intent, Manning actually knowingly performs a good deed, right in time for the holidays.

With Visa’s tap-to-pay feature, the corporation makes it easier to “tap into the holiday spirit” and “spread a little joy.”

Last year, Visa spent over $31 million on TV advertising during the holiday season (October to December 2017, also known as their fourth quarter).

2. Mastercard – “Keeping Moving”

Mastercard makes it easier for the father in this commercial to buy coffee, a sandwich, and baby shoes in a shorter amount of time. All he has to do is tap or click the card and he’s done.

In this way, he has more time to just relax at home and enjoy the company of his loved ones (and see his baby’s first steps!), something that is even more important to people during the holidays.

Last year, Mastercard spent over $20 million on TV ads. Between October and November of this year, it has already spent over $8 million.

3. Capital One – “A Breakthrough”

Capital One Cafés are like our “home for the holidays,” or at least what we hope our family will be like during the merry season – welcoming, up-front, and easy.

The TV commercial emphasizes that Capital One Cafés have savings and checking accounts that are easy-to-open within five minutes and that don’t have any fees or minimums. The cafés are around to help customers, rather than sell to them.

During October and November 2017, the company spent just under $40 million. During the same two months this year, Capital One spent more than triple that amount on TV advertising, totaling nearly $125 million.

4. Discover – “Freak Out”

With the holiday season approaching, we all spend a lot of time thinking about what to get others. But, we deserve to think about ourselves sometimes too. Don’t forget about self-care. Treat yourself.

Discover understands this. In fact, it’s slogan is “We treat you like you’d treat you.”

At the end of a client’s first year, that person automatically gets a dollar-for-dollar match on all the cashback earned. Now, isn’t that something to celebrate?

During last year’s holiday season, Discover spent approximately $25 million on TV advertising. This year, the company spent just over $22 million.

5. Chase – “Wherever I Go”

There’s nothing like a long vacation for the holidays and that’s exactly what Tracee Ellis Ross, the star of Blackish, is doing in this commercial.

The United Explorer card from Chase is for travelers. Those who go to new hotels and new restaurants are rewarded.

The card is perfect for this merry season because “there are no blackout dates, even on holidays.”

Between November 2017 and December 2017, Chase spent nearly $10 million on TV ads. During the same time this year, the bank spent over $20 million, more than double the previous amount.

6. Citi – “Kiddie Shoes”

Christmas is all about spending more quality time with the ones you love.

The Citi mobile app is designed for users to spend less time on it, so that they can “spend more moments in the moment,” like the father in this commercial, who has more time to play with his kids.

During Q4 2017, Citi spent nearly $30 million on TV advertising.

7. Wells Fargo – “Holiday Meal Memories”

The holiday season reminds us, to not only be thankful for our favorite foods like roasted lamb, matzo ball soup, dumplings, and turkey tamales, but to also be more thoughtful of and generous towards others.

Wells Fargo knows that “food is the way we connect … You put a meal in front of somebody, they’re happy.” That’s why the company, along with Feeding America, is collecting donations at its 5,700 branches for local food banks through December 30th, 2018. It wants to “help more families share holiday meals.”

Between October 2017 and December 2017, Wells Fargo spent a total of nearly $30 million on TV ads.

8. TD Bank – “Debit Card”

TD Bank emphasizes the fact that it’s fine to make mistakes. It’s what makes people human. Sometimes, cardholders lose or ruin their debit cards by accident, for instance. And, that’s okay. TD Bank can issue instant debit cards, so why not, as its slogan reads, “bank human”?

The holidays are a time for forgiveness – to excuse your past mistakes and the mistakes others make.

During Q4 2017, TD Bank spent a little over $8 million on TV ads.

9. Bank of America – “Partners Who Have the Power to Make a Difference”

Similar to the Wells Fargo commercial, this ad stresses the importance of using your power for good.

In it, there’s a lot about caring and love and, ironically, not much about Bank of America itself.

The commercial introduced us to different people discussing their desires for clean water, access to education for all, inclusion and understanding, clean energy, and more successful female entrepreneurs. Each speaker was a part of one of Bank of America‘s charitable partners like, Khan Academy, Ken Burns, Tory Burch, Urban League, and Special Olympics.

The ad is a compilation of all of those people united in song, in a single ad, presenting an overall charitable theme, backed by Bank of America.

Between October 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017, the corporation spent over $30 million on TV advertising.

10. American Express – “Don’t Live Life Without It”

American Express reminds people that all the work they’re doing is for their family.

The corporation understands how difficult it is to balance work life and home life, especially during the busy holiday season. But, it always has it clients’ backs.

Throughout last year’s holiday season, American Express spent just over $20 million dollars on TV ads. During the same time frame this year, the corporation spent nearly triple that amount, bringing the total to much more than $40 million.

11. Morgan Stanley – “What Matters”

Between October 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017, Morgan Stanley spent just over $1 million on TV advertising.

In one of this year’s ads, Morgan Stanley mulls over the monetary value of modernizing a school district, building another sports arena, and creating a new telecommunications system.

The commercial also ponders the worth of intangible ideas like critical thinking, team spirit, talking to your mom, and walking in the woods, emphasizing the notion that these things are often more valuable.

Just in time for the holidays, Morgan Stanley reminds us to remember what truly matters.

This Christmas, MediaRadar hopes that you get the chance to spend time with your family and friends, to give and receive love, support, and care, and generously give back to your community.

Don’t snooze on our next post… Stay tuned to see MediaRadar’s rendition of 10 Lords a-Leaping!

*All Q4 2018 predictions are made by comparing October/November spend YoY