Lloyds Banking Group has “not had much success with social and content”, according to director of marketing communications Richard Warren.
Speaking this morning (27 February) at an event held by Thinkbox, he said the business has struggled to demonstrate ROI and effectiveness of social activity.
“I don’t think we do anything particularly good,” he said, adding that this is mainly because social media tends to be done in isolation, on a one-off basis.
Warren, who joined the business from media agency GroupM last June, said the financial services group does “entertain” the role of social media in driving reach, particularly among younger consumers. But that it is struggling to find a wider role for social media marketing.
“We’ve got to be careful how we adopt it,” he said. “At the moment we’re comfortable with reach extension but that’s about it.”
Instead, the most important channels for the brand are TV and out-of-home. It is also starting to invest more in press.
Lloyds is particularly focused on driving emotional engagement with customers. “We’re very focused on brand cut-through, very focused on emotion, which is not always the case with financial services,” Warren said.
The brand’s main channel for driving emotion is TV, which can be seen through its ongoing ‘By Your Side’ campaign, which it is now looking to integrate across all other brand touchpoints – from the in-branch experience to its website. This is how the business hopes to drive trust in the long-term.
“I don’t think advertising creates trust. It comes from people’s experience of the bank,” Warren said.
While Lloyds’s brand marketing is built on By Your Side, last year it took a different approach with its mental health awareness campaign ‘Get The Inside Out’. It launched on Time To Talk Day last February after winning Channel 4’s annual £1m Diversity in Advertising Award.
The campaign shows a series of celebrities, Lloyds staff and the public trying to guess what non-visible condition their partner has in a game to illustrate how important it is to get people talking about mental health problems.
The response to the campaign has been overwhelmingly positive and Warren said the business is now looking at how it can push it further this year. He added that the bank was “surprised” how well it did given it is so different to its core campaign, but that it shows young people are “more interested in aligning themselves with values”.