Andrea is an Account Director at Vovia. Nothing brings her more joy than seeing a project through from planning to execution to results. When she's not sending emails or creating work back schedules you can find her on the trails or on the pavement wearing out her running shoes.

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Better Together – Building the Bank of the Entrepreneur

Vovia recently worked with ATB Financial to execute an award-winning campaign targeting burgeoning entrepreneurs. We sat down with Vovia team members, Andrea Gibson (Account Manager), and Dan Dryfhout (Paid Social Specialist), as well as Sonu Jaswal, Director of Marketing at ATB, to find out more about how the campaign started, how it evolved, and what the results were.

ATB & Vovia - Better Together

Campaign Inception

Sonu Sonu: ATB talks a lot about wanting to be the bank for entrepreneurs in Alberta. But we knew for us to do that, to be that, we had to go deeper than money and business. It’s about strengthening connections between entrepreneurs within their own ecosystem. This campaign was about renewing this commitment and doing so by breaking through the sameness of typical banking messages. We talked to Beni Johnson, an Alberta-based entrepreneur and spoken word artist, on unique ways we could share the entrepreneur experience in a collaborative manner in order to create an emotional connection with the “Amplify” message.

AndreaAndrea: The brief was ambitious. ATB had several messages that they wanted to communicate to the entrepreneurial audience: Entrepreneur Centres in Edmonton and Calgary, free banking for startup businesses, connecting with an expert for information/advice. We had to think strategically on how to tie it all together and encourage the audience to take action. Through conversations with Sonu, we worked to define these goals and determine how we would measure.

Sonu Sonu: We aspired to accomplish a lot with this campaign but we broke it down into three primary goals:
1. Renew commitment to entrepreneurs and generate awareness through video views
2. Foster action/connection through website conversions
3. Acquisition/lead generation

AndreaAndrea: For these goals, we defined specific metrics for measurement:
1. Renew commitment – We had 5 different video stories and set a goal of 260,000 completed views.
2. Foster action/connection – The landing page had multiple conversion paths to allow entrepreneurs to connect with ATB in the way that best suited them. Our goal was 600 conversions during the campaign.
3. Acquisition – Leads would be captured as part of the landing page strategy, but the ultimate goal of the campaign was new business/customer acquisition. As customer acquisition is difficulty to measure with metrics alone, we leaned on ATB to provide us with insight on this front.



Sonu: We also had our secondary goals to increase awareness around our Entrepreneur Centres and positioning ATB as being the Bank of the Entrepreneur.



Andrea: These secondary goals didn’t have quantifiable metrics attached to them, so we evaluated their performance in terms of how they were able to support the primary goals.
1. Drive awareness and interest in the Entrepreneur Centres – Measured by efficient CTR in our display campaigns. We also reported on conversions directly driven by this channel (not assisted conversions).
2. Assist ATB in their positioning of being the Bank of the Entrepreneur – For this goal, we measured engagement on social channels to demonstrate the message was resonating with the audience.

Campaign Development

Now that the stage was set, it was time to work out the finer details of the campaign.


Sonu: We had a limited budget and needed to launch in time for Small Business Week (mid-October), so I turned it over to Vovia to determine how we were going to make this happen.



AndreaAndrea: The team discussed and concluded that a purely digital strategy would be the best fit for this campaign based on the budget, timing, goals, and assets. We met with our Specialists to consider channels and potential executional tactics. The final channel mix included Paid Social, DSP, Paid Search, and Display with the weighting based on how well each channel could support either lead generation or completed video views.

Dan: We leveraged several targeting layers including geography, demographics, interests and affiliations, behaviours, remarketing, and device type. We then planned to test both creative and messaging during the campaign and the individual entrepreneur videos would rotate into the buy at set intervals to minimize the chance for creative fatigue. Taking it further, all media would be bought on a click or view basis to ensure media efficiency and higher viewability standards. The buy would be continuously optimized to actions on the website, with a focus on leads or completed video views.

Sonu Sonu: Looking at the plan Vovia presented, they nailed the spirit of the campaign and found channels that would give us the most impact. It was my first large campaign with Vovia and I was pretty happy with the direction. They shared research on the current media landscape, an entrepreneurs path to purchase and their online habits to support the channels they had selected. The media recommendations then illustrated how our campaign would move us forward towards our goals. We had some dialogue back and forth to ensure all points in the brief were covered and that we felt confident we could reach our goals, but all in all we were comfortable moving forward.

Campaign Execution & Challenges

With ATB now on board with the plan, it was time to tackle the execution. This, of course, came with its own set of challenges to overcome.

DanDan: Our main concern on the social side was creating converting audiences and making sure we had strategic messaging for each stage of the journey. In the first stage, we would be dealing with ‘cold’ users, so creating multiple, highly targeted audience targets would allow us to hit the ground running. Once we had leads and website data to create look-a-like audiences and remarketing lists, we could move to the next stage in the Facebook engagement funnel and speak to a ‘warmer’ audience. This strategy and campaign flow was sound, but because the audiences were so highly targeted, our potential reach was limited. This made frequency monitoring a key component of the campaign, so we could evaluate when our audiences could expand and be transferred to the next step.

AndreaAndrea: The Vovia team met regularly to review campaign performance. It was helpful to have everyone together to discuss challenges and hear what was working well on one channel compared to another. When we had concerns, wanted to test a new tactic, or make adjustments to the landing page, Sonu and her team were very receptive and worked as quickly as they could to make any changes.

Campaign Results

Now for the fun part! What was the ultimate impact of this campaign?


Sonu: When the campaign wrapped, we had hundreds of leads that resulted directly from the campaign. Many of these business opportunities are still pending given that business leads can take months to close and service.




Andrea: The campaign exceeded the goal of 260,000 completed video views by 323%, with a total of 1,098,755 completed views at a cost per completed view of $0.02.




Dan: We didn’t really have a quantified target for social, but the message clearly resonated with the audience based on the engagements. By the end of the campaign, Paid Social had driven a total of 6,290 social engagements and drove the highest number of leads of the channels in play.


AndreaAndrea: We also exceeded the initial goal of 600 direct website conversions by 188%! If a channel assisted in bringing someone to the page, but they converted on a subsequent non-paid visit, they were not included in the numbers above. That said, the campaign received an additional 698 assisted conversions from paid sources with Google Search driving 48% of all assisted conversions reinforcing its importance in the media mix.


Campaign Awards

Connecting so many emerging entrepreneurs with ATB was its own reward, but when we heard the campaign was a contender for a handful of prestigious industry awards, many high fives followed!

Sonu Sonu: ATB entered and won the following awards for this campaign:
1. ACE award 2016-2017 for Best Advertising Campaign and Distinction for Best Single (Amplify: Courage)
2. Alberta Motion Picture Industries Association 2016-2017 Film & Television awards (Rosie) for Best Corporate Video Production and Best Original Music Score (<30minutes)


Andrea: In addition, Vovia entered the campaign into the 2017 Hashtag Awards and won for Best Social & Digital Campaign. We were proud to be a part of the campaign and contribute to its success.



Better Together

They say the sum is greater than its parts, and this campaign was only made possible through the fully concerted efforts between ATB and Vovia. Vovia always strives for these collaborative and dynamic client partnerships like we have with ATB, because we truly are better when working together. The results speak for themselves, and we can’t wait for the next opportunity to help make a difference in our communities.

To view the campaign and related videos, visit: