UK Retail Banking Corona Insights Week End 16 Oct 2020

We aim to help marketers offer the best customer experience they can and continue to build their brand equity during this time of crisis. This week we put the spotlight on Santander - Digging behind the headlines – Santander new campaign

Our UK Retail Banking Dashboard provides a weekly snapshot of trends that you can interrogate. We invite you to click on the link below and take a look around the data. The link will give you direct access to the dashboard, no log-ins are required but please use Google Chrome and access via a laptop. 

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This week we put the spotlight on Santander. YouGov BrandIndex October 2020 announced that the Ad of the Month UK is Santander. This is fantastic news for the new Ant and Dec campaign. Let’s dig a bit deeper to understand the context behind this news.

Undoubtedly the new campaign succeeded in increasing ad awareness substantially. YouGov reported a +12.1 rise from around 10 (13th Sept) to around 22 (end Sept). But this data alone only tells part of the story.

Two weeks earlier the MESH Experience Retail Banking study noticed a significant rise in paid experience reach (the percentage of people that week reporting a paid advertising experience with Santander), going from 4% (3rd Sept) to 8% (17th Sept). Since then we have seen paid experience reach fall, suggesting that the campaign was front-loaded in the first week.

However, you might be forgiven for thinking that Santander had the highest ad awareness with being named Ad of the Month. This is unlikely to be the case. The same week that Santander achieved 8% paid experience reach, Lloyds achieved 14% and Halifax 13%. These banks have consistently reached more people with their advertising. What we see with Santander, is a big increase from a lower base. This is probably what is happening with ad awareness too.

How did the campaign land with people? As we often see with Santander advertising, it tends to be polarizing largely relating to people’s response to Ant and Dec. “Ant and Dec introduced the advert for their bank and then it switched to the Santander ad raising awareness for online scams online and mobile banking. Interested.” Santander | TV | Very Positive | Slightly more likely to choose | Very Relevant. “Advert for bank on online banking with them and how to stay secure whilst online banking. Annoyed, advert stupid and childish with Ant and Dec.” Santander | TV | Very Negative | Much less likely to choose | Very Irrelevant

By digging deeper beyond the headlines we can see that

  • Santander was not number one brand in terms of reaching people,
  • Nor was Santander number one brand in terms of positive reaction to advertising.
  • However, its strong branding and memorable Ant and Dec assets are serving the brand well in creating increased recall.


Mark Thompson, Experience Director & Kaat Defreyne, Senior Experience Executive

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