• Brand positioning
  • Brand idea
  • New brand development

Looking back to think ahead

In a post-crisis world, nobody likes financial brands. Banks especially. Building societies, where people understand the difference, come in for a little less flak – but even here, inertia and indifference exert their leaden drag.

The Yorkshire Building Society is the UK’s second largest, with a solid reputation for trust. It sought to explore what richer seams of meaning could lay behind that, to develop a more active positioning aimed at attracting younger customers.

Sometimes the answer is to look back before leaping ahead – to reinterpret foundational belief for new generations. And looking at the history of the Yorkshire revealed something thoroughly modern – a brand rooted in sharing and connection. Those original societies existed to bring together people with a little money to save with others needing funds to buy a home, in the days when only homeowners were allowed the vote.

Instead of thinking within its dowdy competitive set we encouraged the society to think of itself, and behave as, a ‘modern professional sharing organisation’, justifiably part of the ‘sharing economy’ alongside brands like Crowdcube, BlaBlaCar and Airbnb.

‘Share something good’ was the brand idea taken into research, eventually becoming the brief for new internal behaviour, new communications and new product development.

Passionbrand continues to work with Yorkshire Building Society on new brand creation aimed at younger customers.

Sometimes, the answer to the future lies in the past: by reinterpreting foundational beliefs for new generations.