The wonderful world of Mother: Trainline and Make My Money Matter

You sometimes muse about what exactly goes on in the collective imagination of Mother – an indisputable conclusion is the agency, now a veteran of 30, still has the priceless ability to surprise.

First up in Trainline, a pretty good product actually. But the mothers of invention resist the temptation to show one of the things arriving on time but instead venture into pre-history with a hairy dude who discovers the joys of massage and, in consequence, a missing link between humans and whatever came before (the assumption is that it was hairy.)

Mother strategy director Omar El-Gammal says: “Starting well to go on well is a conviction that you find repeated in culture everywhere – from the importance of first impressions, to getting up on the right side of the bed.

“While most train communications really focus on the journey or destination, there was a great opportunity for Trainline to stand out by building an association with giving people the best possible start they can have to any journey.”

Obvious really.

MAA creative scale: 8.

The ever-present Richard Curtis is one of the founders of Make My Money Matter, set up to persuade banks and investment vehicles to stop ploughing money into fossil fuel purveyors. In an era of self-invested pensions (for those with the dosh) it clearly wants to reach a wider market.

Mother’s ‘The Hidden Relationship’ highlights what goes on between the UK’s largest high street banks and the fossil fuel industry (£37bn of finance in 2022 it seems.)

Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington and Rose Leslie rekindle their romance from the gory drama with the help of a therapist, but this time personifying banks and the oil and gas industry.

Curtis says: “Our largest high-street banks are in a dangerous relationship with the fossil fuel industry – and it’s time we all knew about it. In 2022 alone, household names like Barclays and HSBC poured billions into the fossil fuel sector, ignoring clear warnings that new oil and gas fields risk causing catastrophic climate change.

“Such activity is not only bad for people and planet, it also runs against the wishes of millions of UK citizens who want their money tackling the climate crisis, not fuelling the fire.”

With a raging cost of living crisis thanks to escalating energy costs some may feel that we could do with more of the bad stuff, not less. Make My Money Matter might be seen as the view from Notting Hill.

An intelligent contribution to an important debate nevertheless, from an agency that never plumps for the obvious.

MAA creative scale: 7.