The £6m campaign, which features an ad filmed in Tanzania where the brand works with Oxfam, aims to push The Co-operative Bank’s “ethical credentials” by showcasing the benefits of its switching offer, which gives customers £100 as well as £25 donated to one of seven charities.
It is also an effort to maintain the positive momentum the bank has seen since it set out to rebuild its brand last year with the launch of its £5.5m “For All The Right Reasons” campaign.
The first spot kicked off in October showing a man talking about how the bank has turned down £1bn in business because it does not deal with companies or regimes that do not demonstrate ethical credentials.
It was an effort to reclaim ethical positioning and rebuild lost trust following a drug scandal involving former chairman Paul Flowers as well as a £1.5bn shortfall in finances that pushed the bank to the point of collapse.
Alastair Pegg, marketing director for the bank, told Marketing Week: “The response to the advertising campaign in terms of awareness and recognition has been very positive.”
The company expanded its ethical policy in January, making a formal commitment to embedded its values across “the way we do our business and across our policies and services”, according to Pegg. This has involved the likes of affinity credit cards, which allow customers to give a certain amount of their purchases to charity.
A poll of 74,000 of the bank’s customers following the new policy found that 84% of respondents said the Bank’s Ethical Policy was an important factor in their decision to bank with Co-op.
Further, if data from YouGov’s BrandIndex is anything to go by, the bank’s reputation is certainly improving.
The tool shows that the bank’s Index score – an average of how consumers rate it in terms reputation, satisfaction, value, quality, whether they would recommend it and their general impression of the brand- has gone up by 13.3 year on year to 0.3, a major improvement based on its previous score.
The bank also ranks 13th on the list compared to 26th a year ago, and has risen 10 places in the ranks in the past six months.
The new campaign will be promoted on TV, digital, press, social and outdoor for five weeks in the UK alongside a short film showing the making of the ad in an effort to maintain this momentum and promote the bank’s services.
The ad shows Thomas, a village elder, talking about the benefits of the bank’s accounts, such as mobile banking and UK call centres, and how they support charities both in the UK and abroad.
Pegg said the ad is a move away from what the bank has done in the past.
“We wanted to demonstrate how The Co-operative Bank is different than other banks by demonstrating the work we’ve done with big and small charities,” he said.
“This is a real scenario where we have gone to Tanzania to see the work Oxfam have done. We have actually used real people and genuine villages. It’s a very different approach from what we’ve done and from what other banks are doing.”