Empowering women with financial advice

The challenge

Many women are looking for financial planning advice. But they’re consistently ignored, shuffled off, underserved, or even dismissed by banks who assume they aren’t wealthy enough to be a profitable wealth management relationship. As result, many women end up putting off investing or financial planning, in most cases to their long-term financial detriment. Vancity wanted to change this paradigm by helping women achieve their financial goals regardless of their current financial circumstances.

The insight

Our first step: conduct primary research with women aged 25-44 in order to better understand what exactly they were looking for from a financial institution. A key insight quickly bubbled up to the surface: our target chafed at being pigeonholed, defined, sorted and selected based on outdated and sexist presumptions about their finances, their life choices, their employment and other factors. We knew this was an important “a-ha” that could lead us to campaign success.

The idea

We developed a campaign that featured an iconoclast: a female skateboarder who defied society’s labels but would not only be accepted, but supported and celebrated at Vancity. Our hero would allow us to demonstrate how Vancity is more open and accessible to women than traditional banks. We were careful to use inclusive messaging, and point out Vancity’s complete rejection of the Big Banks’ old-fashioned screening methods: whether you have $1 or $1,000,000, Vancity can provide expert-level financial planning and advice you need. We also came up with a branded name for the service­: Vancity’s “One-to-One Planning Advice” reinforced the personal and individualized nature of the offering.



Digital Banners


Bringing the idea to life

We built our campaign to connect with these women at all stages of their consumer (and financial) journey. First, we created mass awareness through broadcast video (TV; connected TV; preroll). Then, we developed digital banners for a highly-targeted online media buy. We made sure Vancity’s wealth management services were well represented in search and we connected to our target through social media and influencers, who shared their investment planning experience at Vancity. Just as importantly, we engaged with Vancity’s existing customers through banners, a rebuilt online landing page, in-branch signage, emails and the Vancity member banking portal.

The results

Our campaign was a gamechanger for Vancity. Ad recall was well above industry norms, even with a relatively small buy on TV. Diagnostics showed particularly strong results within our target group: they connected well with the ad, responded positively and retained our key messages. Of course, what matters most is business results and here we continued to far exceed even our ambitious expectations, with appointment bookings more than double our campaign objective and conversions exceeding those delivered by similar acquisition campaigns.

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All work