Great Eastern retirement campaign created by BLKJ Havas asks Singaporeans to protect their freedom to choose

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Great Eastern Singapore has launched a new campaign calling for Singaporeans to protect their independence by planning their retirement. Created in collaboration with BLKJ Havas, the campaign uses two forty-second sketches to paint a caricature of what it looks like to still be receiving income after retirement.

Joji Jacob, Co-Founder of BLKJ Havas, said: “Retirement campaigns tend to be serious and emotional, and they sometimes give you the impression that retirement is a rather distressful stage of your life. But for us, we wanted to show that retirement can be fun and exciting! And we decided to zero in on something that people take for granted while they’re still getting paid: the freedom to choose for oneself.”

Colin Chan, Managing Director, Group Marketing, Great Eastern, said: “Living well in retirement essentially means being self-sufficient & having a stream of income to draw on in our silver years. We wanted to land on this key point with the campaign films, based on the notion of how Early proactive financial planning, Starting no matter how Small, with Professional help equates to Not having to depend on others when in retirement”.

Michael Chin, Associate Creative Director at BLKJ Havas, said: “When it’s your money, it’s your decision. Nobody can make you do anything you don’t want to. Think about the time you had to ask your parents for permission whenever you wanted to buy something. It wasn’t that bad, but do we really want to lose our autonomy after so many years of having it? We thought this is a pretty interesting conversation to have.”

A shorter, bite-sized format of storytelling was favoured over the longer-form style that retirement ads usually follow. According to fellow Associate Creative Director Joseph Chan, this approach was chosen deliberately to “stop itchy fingers from hitting the ‘skip’ button”.

Joseph Chan said: “The truth is there have been quite a number of retirement campaigns in Singapore over the past few years. We weren’t sure if viewers would be willing to give another 2 or 3 minutes of their lives to another retirement ad. Our approach was to do something quick that leaves them with a question in their heads. A seed. And we wanted it to be something that they might want to watch over and over again. Like one of those Comedy Central sketches, you know?”

Aimed at 30-40 year olds right up to pre-retirees, Great Eastern’s campaign will run primarily across social and digital, in conjunction with other supporting online content. Viewers who visit Great Eastern’s page here, can calculate how much they think they need in retirement, work out how to get there through their very own Financial Story Board and will be introduced to 2 products, GREAT Lifetime Payout and GREAT Retire Income.

Rowena Bhagchandani, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of BLKJ Havas, said: “The tricky thing about advertising retirement plans, like GREAT Retire Income, for example, is that they are often long-term. Which means we must resonate with the younger crowd.

“But how do you get 30-40-year-olds to take action for something that is potentially 20-30 years away? With this campaign, we identified a universal truth that transcends age. If you’re someone that likes to do things your way, you better start planning your retirement.”



Creative Agency : BLKJ Havas Singapore
Founder/Creative Partner: Joji Jacob
Associate Creative Director: Michael Chin
Associate Creative Director: Joseph Chan
Art Director: Dalton Choo
Copywriter: Shermin Ang
Founder/Chief Executive Officer: Rowena Bhagchandani
General Manager: Jude Foo
Senior Account Manager: Wan Ru Sim
Account Manager: Eunice Ho
Senior Account Executive: Nimmi Balakrishnan
Senior Strategic Planner: Skanda Lokeshwaran
Producer: Noahafizah Fizal
Production Lead: K Cheng
Traffic Manager: Atikah Rahman
Production House: Cutscene
Director: Tariq Mansor
Executive Producer: Paul Tang