What does a knowledge bank do? It turns every customer into a financial advisor.
Founded in 1853, Beneficial Bank is the oldest and largest bank headquartered in Philadelphia. In December 2012, just before the 160th anniversary of the bank, Brownstein Group (BG) was selected as the Agency of Record (AOR), tasked to launch an expansive brand refresh campaign that would highlight Beneficial’s longtime commitment to financial education.
When it comes to financial education, we recognized that there is a big difference between being financially literate and financially fluent, and set out to create a campaign that would fundamentally shift the way people interacted with their bank. The banking world is traditionally conservative in nature, safe and mired in regulations and disclaimers. Bankers are seen as transactional, sales-oriented and cold. But it wasn’t always this way. Community bankers were once thought of as more than just lenders—they were advisors, mentors and partners. People used to look to banks as members of their neighborhood, as people they could trust.
The IdeaYour Knowledge Bank: Brand Campaign
We knew we had to do something unique to turn heads, something impactful. We wanted to cut through the clutter of “traditional” bank advertising. Now more than ever, people are looking for genuine financial guidance and partnership, operating with a real sense of commitment that leaves the feeling, “I want to bank with these people.” We landed on using a mixture of humor and education to show the communicative, participatory nature of the bank, but also underscore the complicated and often confusing modern financial world.
We developed the tagline, “Your Knowledge Bank”—a reminder, an assertion, a doubling down on the notion that the bank existed for the customer, for their betterment. Beneficial is their source of knowledge, their ability to make their financial dreams a reality. To bring to life this concept, the campaign included OOH elements like billboards and transit ads, :30 and :60 radio spots, television commercials, top-tier and regional print and innovative digital advertising. The advertising was unlike anything the banking industry had seen before—it was funny, self-deprecating and inclusive.
TVYour Knowledge Bank: Brand Campaign
PrintYour Knowledge Bank: Brand Campaign
OutdoorYour Knowledge Bank: Brand Campaign
RadioYour Knowledge Bank: Brand Campaign
Lines of Credit
We brought the campaign to the media through a strategic public relations program and to the community through unexpected guerrilla marketing street teams. Activations included citywide pop-up events, branded merchandise giveaways and social media promotions. All creative elements had a call-to-action that led consumers to the Beneficial Bank Facebook page, in an effort to increase communication and responsiveness.
Beyond the outward-facing campaign, an ambitious communications plan was created with in-branch and internal marketing collateral to speak to both employees and current customers.
Measurement was key in this opening campaign, and in the end, we made a big impact. Overall Beneficial Bank brand awareness increased 4% following the brand launch, with noticeable upticks in key brand perceptions identifying Beneficial as “part of the community” (up 5%), an “education company” (up 6%) and a “local bank” (up 6%). Social media exploded, totaling hundreds of new followers and comments on Facebook and Twitter.
On the Small Business side, lead conversion rate increased 45% from the prior campaign, and demand generation attributed to 48,000+ inquiries. The B2B section of the campaign itself earned over 600,000 audience interactions. Industry awards soon followed, with several wins from the Ad Club of Philadelphia and other various regional and national PR recognitions.
In the end, not only did our client’s brand equity increase, but we also began to get to the heart of what regional banking really means. It’s not small; it’s specialized. It’s about a customer expecting more, not less. It’s about evolving to meet the future, without losing the history of who you’ve always been. What can this case study about Beneficial Bank mean for your financial institution? Talk to us. We’ll figure it out together.
Business BankingIt’s not what you know. It’s what who you know knows.
With all the competition in the area, Beneficial’s business loan division needed an edge—a little something to help stand out from the rest. Enter The Lead: A three-part offer designed to take the funny business out of business loans. Beneficial would provide a road map through the process, explain all the forms they’d need up front, and guarantee to call them back within two business days—or they’d pay $500.
We designed the campaign around a question. What’s the best way to show the worst things about getting a loan? In the end, our creative depicted exactly what business owners were looking for: no more nonsense—just a good lead.
Recruitment CampaignIf you want to ‘do the right thing’ you’ve got to find the right people.
At Beneficial Bank, everything starts with a Conversation. This is as true for their new hires as it is for their customers. They wanted to find men and women as dedicated to the idea of supporting their community and doing the right thing as they were. The result was something we called “Into the Blue.”
We designed a concept that captured the very spirit that made Beneficial what it is today. The result was a series of pieces that reflected the best Beneficial Bank had to offer—an opportunity to learn and grow and serve. To be more than just a bank—to be a part of the community.