Positioning

'A different level of emotion': Ally's biggest campaign to-date positions the company as a financial ally – Tearsheet – Tearsheet

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In October 2021, Ally launched its biggest campaign to-date. Dubbed ‘We’re all better off with an ally,’ it includes over a billion impressions and more than 700 out-of-home units across nine cities, including NYC, Nashville, LA, Miami, Detroit, Charlotte, Chicago, Atlanta, and Dallas.
The campaign acts as a continuation of Ally’s campaign in 2020, which focused on elite athletes who don’t have sponsors but still need financial support – aka an ally. This new campaign takes that same idea of partnership but applies it to everyday people.
It zeroes in on everyday moments in people’s lives where an ally comes into play, whether they realize it or not. The campaign emphasizes words that end with ‘ally’ and have some strong meaning behind them – like heroically or matrimonially.
According to Andrea Brimmer, chief marketing and PR officer at Ally, the idea was to only use ordinary people for the campaign. That helped up the emotional ante and emphasize how Ally as a digital bank seeps into a variety of both significant and seemingly insignificant moments in their customers’ lives.
“We knew we needed to harness a different level of emotion, one that epitomized the goodwill consumers felt towards us,” said Brimmer. “This sparked a series of marketing actions, all built around a crystal-clear idea: We are all better off with an ally.”
The campaign’s impressions have been coming through in different formats, like live sports, prime-time programming, homepage takeovers, and social, PR and digital campaigns.
One format, for example, marks Ally’s entry into TikTok. Through the #myfinallymoment challenge on the platform, users are encouraged to share accomplishments they’re proud of together with that hashtag. One user, for example, shares that after three months, he managed to save up enough money to send his parents on a trip. Another user describes how she was able to go from bankruptcy to owning four businesses and three homes.
Another implementation of the campaign came into play in New York just before Thanksgiving. Ally surprised consumers through different forms of anonymous donations. For example, the company anonymously covered the matinee show of the Broadway hit “Come From Away”. It also donated a year’s worth of diapers to 29 newborns at a couple of hospitals in the area.
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Consumers were encouraged to share these moments on social media, including Twitter, Instagram and TikTok, through the hashtag #totallycovered. 
In addition to social media, Ally has released a couple of TV spots, emphasizing both everyday and special moments in regular people’s lives, captioned with relevant words ending in ‘-ally’. A clip of a kid getting his teeth cleaned is captioned ‘orthodontically’. Two movers transporting a  couch is captioned ‘transitionally’. 
The campaign is being integrated into other projects the company has in the works. For example, Ally is currently collaborating with DC, WarnerMedia, and Milestone Media to support Black and Diverse creators in the comic book genre, with the word ‘heroically’.  
On December 23rd, Ally uploaded a post on Instagram featuring Abel Jackson, Ijania Cortez and Georgie, some of the artists behind the milestone Super Heroes Initiative – a training program mentoring Black and Diverse comic book creators.
Ally’s marketing campaign has been about establishing itself as a financial partner rather than just a financial service provider.
“Our goal for this campaign and beyond is to bring our collective attention back to the importance of having strong allies in our lives, and that when it comes to having a financial ally in their corner, people will think of us,” said Brimmer.
As consumers continue to demand personalized products, it will be interesting to see how financial institutions go about marketing themselves as partners along their customers’ financial journeys. 
“For me, the stickiest financial institution would be one that almost becomes this personal CFO that sits in your pocket and allows you to live life the way you want to live it,” said David Donovan, evp of financial services, Americas at Publicis Sapient. “And whoever is able to do that is going to be very successful.”
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Tearsheet is the only media company obsessively focused on technology’s impact on the financial services and fintech industry. Read by decision makers across product, marketing, and digital, Tearsheet connects with its audience across web, email, podcasts, the Outlier membership program and in-person events.

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