Creative in association withGear Seven

Nationwide Encourages People to Start Saving with Stand-Up Comedy Campaign

Advertising Agency
London, UK
VCCP's ‘Payday Saveday’ campaign for the bank features sets from various comedians at a stand-up comedy night

In response to a savings crisis in the UK - where more than 11 million people have less than £100 in savings - Nationwide Building Society has launched a new widespread advertising campaign. It is aimed at encouraging people who are not currently putting any money away to start saving something, no matter how small, and regardless of who with.

The ‘Payday Saveday’ campaign will utilise a variety of different advertising and marketing channels including TV, radio, newspaper, posters as well as the Society’s owned channels.

The campaign will use comedy to try and make what can be a difficult subject into something both relatable and light-hearted. And, as with all of Nationwide’s previous adverts, all the words were written solely by the people involved in each advert.

The adverts were created by organising and filming a stand-up comedy night involving several up-and-coming comedians who took the theme of savings and put their own personal spin on it in front of a live audience. The approach to use humour and stand-up comedy is one which research confirmed was successful in engaging people on a topic they typically ignore. Instead, people found the adverts relatable, accessible and authentic.

This latest campaign forms part of the Society’s wider ‘Voices Nationwide’ advertising, which aims to celebrate people’s lives and stories in their own words. The use of comedy for this campaign sees a new genre of voice being showcased following on from previous adverts involving spoken word, music, and everyday overheard conversations.

The campaign was developed with the Society’s lead creative agency VCCP with media planning and buying by Wavemaker.

Gemma Pauley, Nationwide’s senior advertising and social media manager, comments: “There’s a worryingly large amount of people in the UK who aren’t saving and who would struggle to cope financially if they received an unexpected bill. That’s why we are launching Payday Saveday, one of our biggest campaigns this year, to help get the subject of saving talked about, but crucially in a way that means people feel understood and not judged. Using comedy was key for us because, as our research showed, humour is a great way of engaging people on a topic that they know they should do, but don’t, without it coming across as parent-like or patronising.

“Our experience tells us that low savings rates are not the reason why young people and families aren’t saving. Most people wait until the end of the month to save what’s left, often to find there is nothing. However, by using payday as the trigger, our campaign aims to remind people to pay themselves first and save at the start of the month when they’re paying their bills.”

Jim Thornton, creative director at VCCP, comments: “This is such a serious issue we don’t care with whom or where or how much we all save on payday, as long as we save something, with someone. And if there is one group of people who can take a topic none of us want to think about, talk about or engage with, and make us look at it in a whole new light, it's comedians.

Putting on a comedy night with eight up and coming stand-ups and filming it live, in front of a live audience, we've ended up with a suite of authentic ‘voices’ talking from personal experience about a subject everyone can relate to.”

Gemma concludes: “This campaign is not about getting people to save with us – as a building society and one of the country’s largest savings providers, we feel it’s our role in society to help people save and something which is true to our purpose of building society, nationwide. “We’re determined to get the nation saving again and empowering them to feel it’s possible – our PayDay SaveDay campaign is about changing behaviour and mindsets and re-establishing a savings culture.”