Purpose pays

IPA Effectiveness Awards Case Study 2018

The financial crash and banking scandals left trust in Barclays at record lows. To restore confidence and consideration, the banking group wanted to demonstrate how it helped society. Over four years, purpose-led marketing initiatives showed Barclays staff equipping different groups with digital and life skills, such as how to avoid fraud or use technology. Compared to its previous product campaigns, purpose initiatives led to 2.6 times the level of brand trust, an important driver of consideration in financial services. An estimated 460,000 financial products were sold and £153m of short-term income generated. The estimated short-term profit ROI was £2.30 for every £1 invested.

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Barclays IPA Effectiveness entry 2016. I learnt three career-changing lessons as a result of leading our purpose-led brand campaign. Firstly, you have to protect a great idea no matter who is challenging you and what the gremlins might be whispering in your ear in the middle of the night. Don’t allow it to be diluted - be confident, bold and ignore the naysayers. Secondly, allow yourself to be vulnerable. Vulnerability allowed us to be creative and take the advertising places we have never been before. Did we know it was going to work? Absolutely not. But we believed in our strategy and we knew we could test, refine and make the work stronger as a result. And lastly, challenge the norm. Do the unexpected. People expect banks to talk about mortgages, current accounts, loans but this alone doesn’t drive emotional connections and the brand overall. A brand which proudly shows its role within society, communities and how it is helping individuals elevates the conversation and perceptions of it in people's minds. How we work has completely changed. Our mantra throughout the campaign was actions not words; this means that from an insight perspective, we hardwired into the Brand a relentless search for powerful insights and great examples of how people, propositions and services are demonstrating our purpose through the actions they are taking. We also held authenticity very closely to our hearts; shining a light on real people telling their own stories was at the centre of our creative expression, which was made even better when these individuals were able to pass on their own practical experiences, like a LifeSkills lesson to millions of others.

Claire Hilton, Marketing Director

Winners 2018

Silver Winner


Purpose pays







Principal Authors

  • Tom Roach - BBH

Contributing Authors

  • Adam Smythe - Barclays UK
  • Claire Hilton - Barclays UK

Credited Companies

  • -

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