Newcastle Building Society – Intermediaries Brand Campaign

The challenge

Newcastle Building Society set out ambitious goals to significantly grow their mortgage business over the next five years. Their broker channel is key to this ambition and connecting with this audience was pivotal for success. So we were tasked to develop a new brand value proposition and a refreshed visual identity for Newcastle Building Society’s Intermediaries subsidiary (called Newcastle Intermediaries) that could help support their future growth.

The approach

To unlock this growth it was essential we understood the broker mindset and their views on Newcastle Building Society and other mortgage lenders in the market – to provide strategic insight and recommendations to direct the brand development process.

To kick this process off we conducted 11 stakeholders interviews. This was then followed up with 10 one-on-one interviews with a range of brokers (across regions and with different levels of affinity to Newcastle Intermediaries) to understand the needs, motivations, and perceptions of brokers when working with lenders.

One of the key themes identified internally was the challenge of how to position the intermediary business within the context of the wider building society. As a Member-owned and purpose-led business it needed to stay core to the main Building Society identity and values – whilst acknowledging the important role brokers provide in connecting customers with the right mortgage. And it was apparent we would need to strike a balance of having a clearly defined intermediary brand that gave more focus to grow this market but without feeling disingenuous to the Building Society brand.

With brokers, we learned just how much they love the people side of the job and building those intimate relationships that help more home ownership dreams come true. Nothing makes them happier than telling their client the life-changing news they have the mortgage to buy their dream home. But many find it a stressful process dealing with lenders that make it difficult to manage their client’s expectations, they want to work with lenders who are respectful and supportive of them and the value they bring to the process. And when it comes to communication they don’t want fluffy – they demand honest, reliable, consistent and transparent communication on product criteria, processes and strong reasons to work together.

Drawing from all these insights our approach was to redefine the intermediary brand to remain authentic to the Society’s end customer purpose whilst communicating the desire to work in close partnership with brokers to make more home ownership dreams happen. This resulted in a new tweaked brand name of Newcastle Building Society for Intermediaries – making it clear we’re here for Intermediaries and a brand promise of ‘Powered by Partnership’.

And the brand proposition became all about communicating clear commitments on ways of working together to deliver more ‘feel-good’ moments – when they can tell their clients their mortgage and home ownership dreams have come true. This has helped inspire a financial brand that feels really emotive and human. And this propositional commitment to “Deliver more feel-good moments” is delivered by four propositional pillars:

  1. Technology – Making brokers’ lives easier through innovative tools, so they can spend more time with clients and less time on admin
  2. People – Access to a dedicated team of experts, experienced underwriters and live chat to support the team, enabling clarity and confidence
  3. Product – Unique and competitive products for brokers to offer designed around affordability and flexibility
  4. Respect – Prioritising transparency and respect in our communications, so brokers feel well-informed and more in control

With a fresh photography showcasing the broker support team and a distinct brand identity – we launched this with an integrated marketing campaign and the tagline “Experience the power of partnership today” across social media, emails, internal comms, event signage, merchandise and BUA brand assets.

The results

The new brand has only just launched so there are no results as yet but here is a testimonial from Paul Cairney, Head of Marketing, Newcastle Building Society.

“We choose to work with Moreish because of their expertise and insight into the Financial Service market place, clear brand development process and impressive credentials of delivering commercial impact from proposition and identity work with similar clients. And I’m delighted to say working with Moreish on this significant strategic collaboration has delivered everything we wanted and more. The ‘powered by partnership’ brand promise was universally liked and really helping to inspire positive change within the business. I would highly recommend them to any financial provider needing greater insight and creative inspiration to support their brand strategy and marketing campaigns.”