Odibo: At Fidelity Bank, Our New Identity Speaks Volumes

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Divisional Head, Marketing Communications, Fidelity Bank Plc, Charles Odibo, speaks with Festus Akanbi on the bank’s recent rebranding.

From the reaction of the packed audience at the unveiling of Fidelity Bank’s identity, it’s obvious it was well received. So tell us, what does this new identity mean?

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A brand’s identity and all identity manifestations are ways of visually communicating what the brand stands for, and in an unspoken way powerfully communicates how it intends to engage its publics, internal and external. Our logo, for instance, consists of an icon and word mark.

Our icon consists of two arrow tips, blue and green, separated by an upward white line. The blue reminds us of our rich heritage and where we are coming from, while the green speaks to our future growth and the renewed energy with which we shall conquer new frontiers. The white upward line combines blue and green to reflect our upward trajectory

Our word mark is derived from a special font which showcases our vibrancy and elegance.

I also noticed that at the new identity unveil, your bank put up a touching show of the lapel pin in a ceremony wrapped with music and poetry.

Every aspect of our identity and its manifestation tells the story of what the brand means and how we shall use same to live our promise to the banking public. Because I have the privilege to lead the team that manages this brand, let me reiterate what we said at the launch event that the lapel pin, ordinary as it seems, means to us… At Fidelity, we wear it with immense pride, generous dignity, and a sense of responsibility.

In a way, it is part of the physical representation of our commitment to our mantra – we keep our word.

How do you tell the story of the re-branded Fidelity Bank to get high top of mind awareness?

Our Marketing Communications, especially Master brand advertising is anchored on a strong point of view that connects with the need of the banking public. It is about the customer, but how Fidelity Bank will make it happen.

Our narrative tells the story of our brand essence (what we stand for) from the perspective of the customer so he/she can clearly see himself/herself in the vision and mission, and what it specifically means for him/her.

So, tell us about the “Tough Job” television commercial you revealed to the audience.

Therein lies the case about a strong point of view anchored on brand essence, expressed through a brand idea. A brand idea simply is the creative expression of brand essence, and it has to be big, true, compelling, and differentiating for it to resonate with our publics.

It has to resonate because the ultimate objective is to create the needed shift in consumer behavior, from current to the future deserved (not desired) behavior.

The Tough Job advertising campaign speaks to the innate human nature to overcome challenges in order to make dreams and aspirations come true. We all have dreams in our eyes and hopes in our hearts, but the reality is that the obstacles to achieving them are real. Our bank is saying to the banking public, don’t give up on your dreams, because there is a bank that understands the journey through the maze of life and is here to partner with you to tackle the tough job of life.

As a brand being refreshed to appeal to the youth, what does the Fidelity brand hold for them?

First is to understand the pressing aspiration, ambition, and needs of young people that keep them awake all night. What the future holds can and should excite them.

So, we are interested and desirous to make them realize that whatever the future holds, its roots are here with us in the present.

The new face of Fidelity will powerfully communicate, internally and externally, our vision of leadership, a positioning for changing trends; the future needs of the banking public delivered today through our offerings, products, and services. This is what leaders do. Remember that our vision is an unmistakable aspiration to leadership as crafted by the founding fathers of this Bank.

The nation’s demographics show that the future is the youth. How can you enable them to make their “dreams come true”?

According to Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Atlantic, in his book “Business Stripped Bare”, “a brand always means something and ultimately you can control the meaning of your brand only through what you deliver to the customer.” The platforms, channels, and processes for serving the customer should reflect our positioning for leadership; our understanding of the future, and expectations of the customer in that regard.

What is your last word on this identity renewal project that your bank has embarked upon?

As you know, the brand is the most treasured asset of any business and therefore needs to be refreshed, renewed and re-tooled to be relevant in a vastly changing operating environment.

Our new identity powerfully communicates our renewed commitment to our battle-cry (We are Fidelity…we keep our word) that unifies our actions.