TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation (AMTD) wants to get the word out about its new 24-hour trading and has tapped Lionel Richie to do its bidding. According to a report from MediaPost, the Omaha, Nebraska-based discount brokerage has launched a new advertising campaign that features Richie signing his classic song "All Night Long."
Aimed at investors both old and new, the TV spot shows traders disappointed that they can't buy and sell stocks after hours, only to be informed by Richie that they can now invest 24 hours a day. Online, the ad spot reveals that Richie's secret passion is trading stocks late at night. TD Ameritrade is also running print ads and having Richie use his Twitter page to get the word out about the new service. You can learn more about this brokerage in Investopedia's TD Ameritrade review.
Izzy Garber, group creative director at Havas New York, which created the campaign, told MediaPost that TD Ameritrade is using Richie because he speaks to the targeted audience of those age 35 and older. "Partnering with Lionel Richie gave us the scale and impact to communicate our idea through some unique channels to really stand out," said Garber.
Earlier this month, the online brokerage became the first first retail broker to roll out 24-hour trading in the U.S. In a press release, it said that investors can now access the equity markets throughout the night, with qualified clients now able to buy or sell certain exchange-traded funds (ETFs) from 8:00 p.m. ET Sunday to 8:00 p.m. ET Friday. According to TD Ameritrade, as it is stands now, there is a gap between when investors make investment decisions and when they can put them into action. The company said close to 70% of clients that use the firm's research and education resources do so outside of regular market hours and have to wait until the next day to make a transaction based on their research. Meanwhile, Asia-based investors that want into the U.S. markets have to trade during U.S. market hours, regardless of their own time zone.
The move is expected to cushion some of the blow of declining trading revenue as fees continue to drop in that area for the entire industry. In an interview with Barron's, TD Ameritrade Chief Executive Tim Hockey acknowledged that trading commissions are facing a long-term decline – a 9% compounded average decline over the past two decades – but asserted that the brokerage can counter this reality by providing customers with a whole array of ways to trade, including 24-hour availability.
"As we've been improving our innovation level – what we like to call our 'throughput' – a lot of it has to do with bringing investing and trading, as a service, closer to where our clients actually are," Hockey said in the interview. "When I come in from the gym early in the morning and I ask [Amazon's] Alexa for the news, if it tells me about something that happened overnight that I want to trade on, if I called my financial advisor, it's unlikely that she's going to pick up at 5:30 in the morning."