By Princewill Ekwujuru
Globally, various companies who slimmed their advertising budget are yet to reverse them, even as recession begins to ease in certain economies. According to analysts, this is not helping marketing of goods which results in inventory pile up.
Other consequences of the cut in advertising budgets include retrenchment in media agencies. Some of the media practitioners in fact confirmed that business was tough.
In Nigeria, three factors affected advertising business of most sectors especially the banking sector of the financial industry. These include the global recession, already existing difficult environment in Nigeria.
In difficult times, It is only those companies that understood the importance of advertising as an integral part of business that have maintained some level of exposure adopted strategies for their marketing communications positioning to ensure that they are not relegated.
One of those banks is Diamond bank which has in spite of the recession created a TVC with three versions for market positioning.
The first of the commercials, talks to the teeming football loving community.
And here, Nigeria boasts of a large number. In this one, a mis_kick from a football pitch sends the ball across the fence and unto the busy street where everyone ignores the ball-everyone except a man dressed in very subtle Diamond Bank colours. He stops, picks up the ball and throws it back into the pitch with a bold smile on his face. And he does not stop there. He stands to watch as one of the footballers correctly kicks the ball into the net for a goal that throws him into exctacy.
Next comes the one that talks to the high society. A lady is in a shopping mall. She gathers her purchases and makes for the street. But her wares are upset by a youth on a bicycle who does not care to stop. But then comes the same young man in Diamond Bank colours. This time, he is just strolling and with a wan smile, stoops to assist the lady pick up her wares scattered on the sidewalk.
The second shows respect, an old lady stands on queue on what clearly looks like the Lagos BRT busstop. But she is late in entering the bus and has to stand up. But somewhere in the bus is this ubiquitous caring man in Diamond Bank colours, this time without his grey suit. He gestures to the woman and immediately gives up his seat for the old lady to sit comfortably.
The connecting theme in all the versions of he commercial is that of a bank that cares. In an environment where customer service begins and ends in the business offices, Diamond Bank seems to be sending a different kind of message-that no matter where you are, no matter what you are doing, the bank is always there to lend a hand. The fact that in the three versions of the commercial, the same man does the same task of offering a lending hand speaks of consistency and ubiquity.
“The beauty of it all is that the three versions of the TVC celebrate the idea of providing services to all classes of people; young or old, educated or not, in the bus or market place and therefore bring the message to the ordinary man on the street. We have used simple scenes to narrate where various customers are touched passionately with our little intervention instincts.
“This has again reinforced our Brand position to reflect Diamond Bank today as good partner irrespective of location, time and condition. And it is these simple things that really matter in life. Those things that other take as common, we cherish them as impactful. One may however understand the concept better by keeping abreast with the philosophy and mission of Diamond Bank.
The Bank has for some time, been consistently attached to initiating and providing lifestyle-changing products. Again, that the Bank’s main positioning strategy lies in its strive to avail clients a service offering of unequalled quality and convenience.”
Shot in South Africa, the commercials have a rich dose of Nigerian content. A good deal of the models are Nigerians while the scripting was a combined initiative of Diamond Bank and its agency that the bank feels should not be mentioned. At least for now.
According to Diamond Bank’s Head of Corporate Affairs, Charles Udoh, the new 30 seconds TVCs which reinforce the Bank’s promise of offering its customers and prospects a certain advantage is hinged on three scenarios and seeks to create emotional connection with all segments of the society.
From deductions it does appear that Diamond Bank is about to rev things up again. The bank is going to be 20 by 2011 and thinks this is the time to make a statement of what the bank represents for its customers.
These campaigns are not yet running, when it eventually runs it would remains to be seen how the sector would react to the campaigns.
Meanwhile, there has not been any rumour of any bank planning anything.
Meaning that Diamond Bank would have a near free reign in the market. Free reign in the sense that many others who are on television would still be running old campaigns leaving only Diamond with fresh TVCs. This of course would give strong impetus to the Diamond brand, this did not only escape the regulatory hammer of 2008, but has gone on to take advantage to connect much more strongly to customers across market segments.
Over the years, Diamond Bank has distinguished itself as a financial institution with a knack for attention to details; doing those little things that others see and overlook. To us in the Bank, a customer should be cared for even to the minute of his challenges. Essentially, we feel concerned about their growth and development and that is our promise.
“This Promise clearly depicts Diamond Bank as that financial service provider with uncommon knack for details. What we are saying through the new commercial is that when we interface with customers, the touch and the customer care will certainly bring a positive change. The bank as an agent of change is making sure that our customers are happy through our strategic intervention irrespective of the situation.