The Britannia Building Society is talking to advertising agencies
ahead of a major branding campaign - its first in a number of years.
The budget for the campaign, which will include a new corporate identity
and a brand repositioning, is expected to increase to between pounds 4
million and pounds 5 million.
The review is being handled by the AAR.
BDH TBWA has handled the account since 1994 and the business was worth
around pounds 2 million last year, according to MMS.
However, most of the work has been below the line and has concentrated
on point-of-sale. Any above-the-line advertising has been confined to
press and promoted the company’s rates and services rather than its
The brand was given some publicity last year when the building society’s
mutual status came under threat from carpetbagger Michael Hardern, a
freelance butler. The campaign succeeded in preventing the society from
Britannia aims to rekindle brand awareness with a major advertising
campaign and is reviewing its positioning in the market.
A spokeswoman for Britannia said: ’We are conducting a review of our
corporate identity and brand positioning and have invited a few agencies
in to see us. We are drawing up a final list at the moment but we are
not inviting any more agencies on to the list.’
Martin Anderson, managing director of BDH, confirmed that the agency
will be repitching for the account. ’We are seeing them next week when
we will be briefed. We are confident that we can meet that brief,’ he
The change in strategy has come after changes in Britannia’s marketing
department. Alan Long officially moved up from head of product marketing
to head of marketing this month. Long is overseeing the review. He
replaces Julie Grant who has become head of direct channels.
Carlson, which handles Britannia’s direct marketing and customer
retention, is not affected by the review.
Britannia is the third largest mutual building society behind the
Nationwide and Bradford & Bingley, although the latter is losing its
mutual status this year.
Britannia, which has almost 200 branches and 4,000 employees, has
benefited from the recent boom in the housing market.
In the first half of last year, profits before tax rose 15 per cent to
pounds 72.9 million. There was a 47 per cent increase in mortgage
The company’s full-year results will not be released until the end of