AAMI wraps up Rhonda and Ketut campaign as actors become ‘unavailable’

AAMI executive manager Richard Riboni told Mumbrella fans of Rhonda and Ketut should not expect any more ads featuring the two characters with the ‘School reunion’ spot their last.

Today the brand revealed it was auctioning off Rhonda’s “brakefoot bling” in a charity eBay auction as it looks to draw a line under the campaign which has run for three years, and proven popular with the public.

On the campaign’s conclusion he said: “All good things must come to an end eventually, all stories have an end date. The final ads are on air at the moment.”

Riboni hinted the campaign, created by Ogilvy Melborune, has been concluded due to the actors availability – actress Mandy McElhinney plays Rhonda while Melbourne forklift driver Kadek Mahardika plays Ketut.

“The actors need to be available and wanting to do it and this point in time they’re not going to be available to play those roles in the foreseeable future,” he said when asked if the pair might appear again.

McElhinney is currently appearing in Nine’s Love Child and has picked up a variety of roles in Aussie dramas including Nine’s Howzat! Kerry Packer’s War miniseries and starring as legendary magazine editor Nene King in the ABC’s second instalment of Paper Giants: Magazine Wars since she first appeared for the insurance brand in 2011.

“You always want to end a campaign on a good note, there was limitations to how much further the story could go and how you could still keep the characters relevant after three years. Three years was a pretty good stint,” continued Riboni.

“We’re really thankful the Australian public has grown to love these two characters and has followed their trials and tribulations of love and hope they’ve enjoyed seeing the story play out as much as we have had creating it.

“We had no idea it was going to be as popular as this has turned out to be.”

Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 11.40.53 AMThe campaign has seen dozens of fan pages appearing on social networks and spawned unofficial t-shirts in Bali featuring Ketut catchphrases.

“It’s not something you expect, you always hope for it. It’s certainly has been one of those campaigns that’s captured the imagination of Australians,” added Riboni.

On what’s next for AAMI, Riboni teased: “You’ll have to wait and see. There won’t be another Rhonda and Ketut, it will be something else.”

AAMI first introduced Rhonda in October 2011 with Ketut introduced as a love interest later in the campaign when she visited Bali. AAMI followed up the Bali romance with a love-triangle between Rhonda, Ketut and Trent Toogood with the public invited to chose who was right for Rhonda. Of course, Rhonda chose Ketut in a commercial launched in January.

Miranda Ward


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