UNH Alum Creates “Priceless” Campaign

Jane Gordon

TV viewers from throughout the world quote lines from MasterCard’s ‘Priceless’ advertisements, the most successful campaign in history. ‘Priceless’ is now a part of pop culture, thanks to University of New Haven graduate Lawrence Flanagan ’80.

Flanagan is this fall’s Bartels fellow, and will speak at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 30 in Dodds Theatre. The lecture is free to all students, faculty, and staff. Don’t miss it. Marketing geniuses are hard to come by, and this one will be right in our backyard that day. As the chief marketing officer for MasterCard Worldwide, Flanagan was responsible for selecting the ‘Priceless’ campaign from thirty five options that were offered to the corporation. Everyone else at MasterCard liked another ad, which was sharp and cool and witty. But Flanagan saw the long-term potential for ‘Priceless.’ He pushed hard for it.
MasterCard listened, the brand was revived after a slump in the 1990’s, and Flanagan was hailed a hero.

Flanagan does not take much credit for his marketing heroism, stating instead “I was just willing to say, ‘I think this is the best thing to do’. I’d rather do the right thing than the safe thing.”

Flanagan will spend the day at UNH on September 30, speaking to students and faculty in classes, having lunch with students leaders, and presenting the lecture at 11 a.m. at Dodds. Remember: all are invited!