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Success with Money Is Not for the Privileged, Says Ubank


LBB’s Esther Faith Lew takes a look at how whiteGREY developed a brand platform and campaign to inspire young people to take control of financial planning

Success with Money Is Not for the Privileged, Says Ubank

Inspiring young people to take control of their finances and become successful with their money – that is the mission ubank wants to accomplish. As Australia’s first digital bank, ubank speaks to a customer base that is savvy and knowledge-seeking, and they did it by having “a conversation about money, not about banking”.  

Led by whiteGREY’s CCO Chad Mackenzie and strategy director Brooke Thompson, driving the That’s How You Money platform and campaign meant “breaking the taboo around financial success being for the elite few”. “We know our audience want to learn and want the right tools to help take ownership of their own futures. So, that’s exactly what ubank has set out to do,” says Brooke.

Brooke adds that the brand premise goes beyond financial education to enable more honest conversations about money, and for successes and failures to be out in the open. Following ubank’s merger with 86 400, another digital banking player, in 2019, the focus has been on “bringing technology that enables greater value and experience for customers”. 

“They’ve always been consumer oriented. The positioning focus elevates the outcome of that,” says Brooke.

Set against the current socio economic landscape of post-pandemic recovery, consumer thinking and behaviour have seen shifts that require the attention of marketers. One of the key priorities to have arisen from the uncertainty is that of financial planning and stability. 

With ubank’s stance on empowering planning, the campaign’s current trajectory will certainly take hold with consumers in different channels such as TV, cinema, OOH, audio, digital and social executions. A second phase is planned in early 2023.

LBB> Creating value across brand, media and technology platforms is one of the differentiating factors of whiteGREY’s positioning. How did that come into play in the ubank campaign? 

Brooke> We used our model, Platform Orchestration, to activate That’s How You Money in a way that reflected our audience’s mindset, needs and behaviours as they strive to be more successful with money. Planning for a cohesive consumer experience broadens the scope of our creative solutions – media, technology or whatever else may answer their need. 

LBB> What was the strategic approach in layering the various elements of the campaign and the sequential deployment of the channels and platforms? Elaborate for both brand and product deployment. 

Brooke> Our financial lives don’t operate in campaign cycles, so it was important to orchestrate a campaign ecosystem that reflected that reality. We started with product in targeted, responsive digital environments because that serves the greatest functional need – to be there when consumers are actively searching for solutions for spending, saving, and lending. This included social video, digital audio and display. 

Then, we went live with brand in broadcast channels – TV, audio and outdoor –  to announce the arrival of ubank on the market and drive consideration of their offering among a broad audience. 

LBB> Talk us through the brainstorming for the creative journey and what that entailed?  

Chad> It was a fun, all-in affair. We started with some great insights and a clear strategic space. But, if we were to open a fresh conversation about money, we needed to find an idea and articulation that moved past the clichés and was big enough to stretch across the whole experience. 

This meant some good robust internal discussions and some brilliant conversations with the team at ubank too. We ended up with an idea we all believe in wholeheartedly.

LBB> What kind of vibe and energy did you want the campaign to have? And how did it contribute to the desired action deliverables?  

Brooke> We noticed a shift in behaviour – that money was no longer something we just had, that technology had allowed it to become something we do. Acknowledging this shift meant we talk about money in a way that is active and exciting. 

Our audience is smart. They’re out there doing things with their money. So, it was important that the campaign reflected their confidence. 

LBB> What kinds of scenarios were portrayed to target the action deliverables for Saving, Spending and Home Loans? What new patterns of mindset and behaviour were desired?

Chad> The three scenarios chosen dramatised what it feels like to have the upper hand with your money. To feel like you’re making smart financial decisions at every turn – even when spending. Each moment chosen was actually a small moment. But a moment that can, and should, have a big impact on how you feel with your money. The soundtrack Feeling Good was chosen as a backdrop to these moments to highlight the confidence you can have with your money.  

LBB> What were the highlights and challenges involved in the production of this campaign? 

Chad> The whole thing was a joy to make. Working with Liz Murphy and the team at The Sweetshop made the film process extra special – flying people through the air on wires was certainly fun too. Toby Burrows and the Kitchen crew brought the stills to life so beautifully and really helped find a unique style. But, if we had to put one highlight at the top, we’d say the casting. Such a perfect set of talent to lead the films and stills that really reflect the audience we’re talking to. 

The only real challenge was trying not to do everything at once. We had a suite of performance assets sitting alongside the brand work, and they needed to be flighted in a way that gave the business a change to make the merger as successful as possible.  

LBB> In reaching out to a younger demographic, what were the social media channels employed?  

Brooke> For our younger demographic, we broadened the concept of social media. That included Tik Tok, YouTube and Spotify, complimented by Instagram and Facebook to reach the older portion of our demographic. 

LBB>With this first phase running through till October, what will the second phase be aiming to address and how will it continue the momentum? 

Brooke & Chad> The second phase will aim to really embed the ubank brand positioning in market by continuing with the broadcast activation. More importantly, we’ll be looking for interesting ways to further drive consideration by demonstrating our purpose to consumers. ubank needs to live out its proposition so brand behaviour work will follow.  

LBB> As the biggest ATL investment from ubank in over three years, what are the expected metrics and results from this multi pronged campaign? 

Brooke> The goal is to see growth in brand awareness and consideration that leads to long-term and consistent returns in customer acquisition. 

LBB> In terms of tackling a brief for a financial client, how did this campaign raise the bar in its approach and execution? 

Brooke & Chad> The brief was for a financial client, yes, but the work was about the financial future of the consumer. Orienting our thinking around the consumer led to something fresh. Consumers don’t bank; they use their money. 

LBB> What are the takeaways for whiteGREY in terms of approaching the finance industry in future? 

Chad> Starting with such a clear strategy where everyone (client and agency) is all-in makes such a big difference. It sounds obvious, but often we try to find our way through the work rather than start off in clear air. When you start strong strategically, the ideas that follow create space in the cluttered financial conversations around the industry. 

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whiteGREY, Wed, 24 Aug 2022 05:44:34 GMT