"P&N Bank's ampersand becomes a symbol for collective strength in the WA-based mutual's latest brand campaign.
Launched during the AFL grand final last weekend, the "Power of &" ads form the opening tranche of a major brand platform intended to run for several years and designed to distinguish P&N culturally and philosophically from the big banks.
The campaign includes television, radio, print, outdoor and digital, and also a new content marketing platform on the bank's website, a community responsibility component that discreetly gives money to people in need, and a major social media activation designed to engage thousands of West Australians.
The campaign was developed by 303Lowe, which won the bank's creative advertising account in April.
P&N senior marketing manager Anna Pearce said the campaign was deliberately "un-bank-like". "The belief and meaning we have as an organisation isn't necessarily related to the fact that we're a bank, it's actually more around the fact we are a mutual organisation owned by members with a heart and a soul that we feel very strongly about," she said.
"We believe bringing people together into a group will make them stronger and deliver greater value to them.
"Working with 303. it became evident that something as simple as an ampersand is really the best way of expressing this.
"(The campaign is) bringing to life the mutual difference, which has always been hard to articulate. We feel like we've actually landed on how to get that to the market in an effective way." P&N worked with Melbournebased brand adviser Simon Hammond, of Hammond Thinking, and The Be Counsel to analyse the company's culture.
"We felt that if we started inside we would then be able to take what really is at the heart of us as an organisation and then project that in a manner that would be externally inviting for growth and new membership," Ms Pearce said.
The insights gleaned from that process were used to inform the brief that went to agencies when the bank's creative advertising account went out to tender early this year. 303Lowe executive creative director Richard Berney said Power of & was the sole idea the agency pitched to win the business.
He said he believes P&N "owning" the ampersand will work for the bank first because it is a visual pneumonic that's easy to remember but also because it "represents the power of many" inherent in the mutual model.
"There's a good truth in there," he said.
"This is local West Australians pooling their money together to create opportunities for themselves to borrow money or whatever do whatever it is they need a bank for.
"That's what's exciting about the Power of & - we're establishing a platform."
And: The symbol at the heart of 303Lowe's campaign for P&N Bank."
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