Fidelity Investments, reaching again for the stars, has hired funnyman Don Rickles for a television and print advertising campaign that focuses on retirement planning.
"I wanted to create an advertising campaign that really was engaging and memorable and really got people listening to the message," said Stephen Cone, president of Fidelity Customer Marketing and Development, who developed the campaign.
As marketing director for KeyCorp in Cleveland, Mr. Cone hired Anthony Edwards, a lead actor in the hit NBC series "ER," as a spokesman.
Fidelity, the country's largest mutual fund company, launched a national campaign in September with commercials featuring comedian Lily Tomlin and investment guru Peter Lynch.
Mr. Lynch also appears in other commercials promoting the company's money-management expertise.
Boston-based Fidelity has $616.2 billion of assets under management.
Fidelity's most recent round of ads focuses on "how to manage your money for the second 50 years," Mr. Cone said. He added that investors of all ages should follow Mr. Lynch's investment principles, which include diversification, understanding the market, and steering clear of hot stock tips.
In a television ad that began airing this week, Mr. Rickles is in a bait shop preparing for a fishing trip. Mr. Lynch asks if the trip means that he plans to retire, which leads Mr. Rickles to wonder about his financial security.
Another spot features Mr. Rickles and Mr. Lynch sitting next to each other on an airplane. When Mr. Rickles asks what is new in the financial world, Mr. Lynch explains why it's a great time to consider converting an existing IRA to a Roth IRA.
Mr. Rickles, 72, was one of several entertainers considered for the campaign, Mr. Cone said. "He's interested in getting the message out to older Americans in particular that they really need to understand Peter's message."
Mr. Cone said Fidelity's next ad campaign will probably include Mr. Rickles, Ms. Tomlin, and Mr. Lynch.
"It'll be interesting to see what we cook up for next year," he said. u