Challenge

It is extremely hard to stand out in the business banking category. Lack of distinction coupled with poor customer satisfaction (at only 30%) yet only 9% of customer’s considering switching banks means it is a category lead by inertia.

To cut through, we needed a campaign that would answer a genuine need and higher societal purpose. A secondary proof point we were given would be able to do just that – NatWest have specially trained and accredited Relationship Managers dedicated to supporting new start-ups and businesses led by women

Insights

Female entrepreneurs are a source of significant untapped potential. Currently only 20% of businesses are owned by females. If women set up businesses at the same rate as men there would be 1 million more women entrepreneurs. This would also have a direct effect on the economy; female growth at the same rate as male, would result in increase to the UK GDP of £60bn by 2030

This is great news, yet no bank in the UK was acting on the barriers women face in starting businesses

Organising Idea

We were on a mission to provide wannabe female entrepreneurs, the knowledge, basic tools and confidence in moving forward with their business ideas and plans

From research we knew the reasons why women were less likely to start a business; lack of visible female entrepreneurial role models, fear of failure and low confidence in approaching banks for lending. And with 83% of female start-ups occurring as a result of them knowing someone in a similar industry (who could provide them experience, basic help and advice) we knew we needed a campaign that would be able to demonstrate NatWest can be that facilitator in supporting female start ups.

Execution

We created an original content podcast series that featured NatWest SME and start-up customers, established female business leaders and NatWest bank experts. The series provided a knowledge and experience exchange between the established business leader (Mentor) and the NatWest customer discussing their journeys of launching a business(es). The series took a conversational tone anchored with a charismatic host and well recognised voice in the UK.

The growth of Podcasts alongside the personal environment they create made them the perfect channel for us to use. As an unused channel for the category, Podcasts also gave us 100% SOV.

ROI

700%

increase in traffic to client webpage.

26%

increase in lending to women business customers YoY.

18,000+

listens to podcast during the campaign.

The impact of the campaign has been phenomenal especially considering the small budget of £60K. As a Category first for Banking, the podcast series gave us 100% SOV in a rapidly growing medium for our target audience allowing us to create Brand stand out and true differentiation. This was recognised at the 2017 Financial Innovation Awards where NatWest won the coveted Innovation in Marketing & Communication award