AN OLD BANK FACING A BRAND NEW FUTURE
Wema Bank was incorporated in 1945 under the name Agbonmagbe Bank Limited. It is Nigeria’s longest-surviving indigenous financial institution. The name of the bank was changed to Wema Bank in June 1970. During a difficult period of instability, the brand suffered some neglect. Marketing support, including advertising and promotions, came to a near-zero position. This negatively affected the brand and business performance.
A brand audit revealed a low spontaneous brand awareness level of 36% amongst individual bank users, poor advertising awareness and message recall, poor brand image, an uninspiring brand personality and a negative brand equity gap. Wema Bank is perceived as old, local, slow/laid-back, not adapting modern technology and therefore short on consumer expectations of a modern bank.
The comprehensive brand strategy and identity review complemented other initiatives aimed at repositioning Wema Bank in consumers’ minds, enhancing its consumer appeal and aiding the achievement of its business growth objectives. In addition to the above, Wema Bank was turning 70. It was therefore an auspicious time to introduce a new brand identity to “refresh” the brand as part of the 70th-anniversary celebration.
Wema Bank was successfully re-launched at an exclusive function, boasting top Nigerian talent and business people.