Asylum and The Kaplan Thaler Group Get A Clue For Aflac


Taking its cues from the board game Clue and its cinematic comedy adaptation, the latest spot for AFLAC via the Kaplan Thaler group finds VFX Supervisor Mitch Drain and the VFX team at Asylum giving the Aflac duck an eye popping digital make over.

Whodunit opens on a stormy night inside a mysterious mansion where an eclectic group of guests have gathered to help an injured friend answer a series of vexing questions. Amidst lightning, power outages and bone chilling gasps in the dark they realize there's only one answer to their insurance questions and it's delivered by the cleverly composited and animated spokes-duck. The answer is Aflac.

Aflac: Experiment

"Growing up in the Bronx, I certainly learned my share of four-letter words, but none more powerful than N-I-C-E. It's a word whose power is vastly underrated and whose image desperately needs an extreme brand makeover. There is a deeply rooted belief in our culture that in order to succeed, you have to act like a bloodthirsty medieval warrior, and that niceness is for the weak and the naive. That's why people buy books like Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office and Leadership, Sopranos Style. That's why reality shows encourage contestants to "eat their young" in order to survive. 


It takes courage to be nice. It takes bravery to give kudos to your competitor, especially in the advertising business. It takes creativity to manage a difficult employee with kindness (and no, not just the creatives). As every agency can attest, we can spend hours feverishly creating new business pitches, pouring over details and brainstorming campaigns that will "wow" prospective clients. But the fruits of all this effort can be lost in an instant if your team overlooks one important detail—being nice."

Aflac fills in the gaps. That's the message the supplemental insurer is trying to convey in its newest commercial, titled "Donut."

In the commercial, two police officers are sitting in a police car. One holds up a donut and compares it to major medical insurance.

"See the hole, that's where Aflac comes in," he said. "Helps pay for groceries, rent and all kinds of bills."

The Columbus-based company provides policyholders with direct cash during times of illness or injury. That is in addition to a customer's major medical coverage.

"Using a donut pneumonic allows consumers to visualize potential gaps in their coverage that Aflac can help fill," said Jeff Herbert, Aflac's chief marketing officer.

Read more here:

Quacksmack: Ad Age's Rupal Parekh Tries Out to Be the Aflac Duck

Inside the Audition to Be the Voice of the Iconic Ad Character



Published: April 10, 2011

Reporters -- particularly this one -- aren't big on beseeching, but in this case, I felt I had to really lay on the charm. "It'd be a great opportunity for our readers to see all the excitement behind your initiative."


Ad Age's Rupal Parekh gets into the act.

This was, at the time, an attempt to convince Aflac it would be a good idea for me to not only sit in on the audition process the insurer was conducting to discover the next voice of its spokesduck, but also to allow me to try out my best Gilbert Gottfried.

She said she'd think about it.

A few days later came the call that they could squeeze me in for a tryout at 10:20 a.m. the following Tuesday. That would mark the final day of in-person auditions in a process that has been downright speedy; from the time the reedy-voiced spokesman fired off his Japan tweets to the time a new quacker will be selected, the duck was to be voiceless for less than six weeks.