Shortlisted 2020

Financial Services


BNP Paribas

Entered by:

Mapp Media


Flipboard, Havas International

The Challenge Of Sustainable Finance

The Challenge

BNP Paribas, also known as the bank for a changing world, has made it their goal over the last few years to integrate sustainability into their business strategy . As a global banking corporation, BNP Paribas appreciate the environmental impact that a financial institution has, and believe that they have a major role to play in the collective effort of building a more sustainable future . As a committed and resp onsible bank, BNP Paribas focus its strategy towards sustainable finance.

In 2019, BNP Paribas wanted to drive this value even further, more positively aligning their brand with sustainable finance and positive banking. The banking group wanted to reinforce their expertise in EMEA and North America whilst also placing sustainability at the forefront of their global outlook. However, this is not such an easy task. For international financial institutions it is difficult to embrace a green outlook without negative conotations against economic performance. Nevertheless, this is what BNP Paribas strived to do so, and one key belief and conviction is that you can combine economic performance with positive social and environmental impact.

The goal in 2019 was for BNP Paribas to align their bank with three Global Sustainability Conferences. These comprised of, PRI (Principles for Responsible Investment), IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the UN Climate Change Conference  COP 25. Initiating conversations  in and around three of the biggest Sustainability Conferences of 2019 enabled BNP Paribas to enforce its message of responsible and sustainable finance at a time when the discussion was most prominent.

Their biggest challenge was to create a shift in perception. To adjust the attitudes of consumers and promote a sustainable set of values that have historically been seen as contradictory to the banking environment and wider industry.

The Creative Solution

With a difficult challenge ahead, it was clear that the creative solution was going to be a key part to the success of this campaign. The objective was for BNP Paribas to align more prominently with sustainable finance and positive banking. For this to feel authentic we knew that we had to create a seamless partnership between BNP Paribas and the sustainability events that it was aiming to align with. Changing a consumer’s attitude is a delicate and gradual process, which is why Flipboard’s Native Promoted Content was an ideal fit here.

The Native Promoted Content solution seamlessly distributes brand content with the same form and functionality as the world-class editorial on Flipboard. This worked perfectly for BNP Paribas who were looking to drive traffic to bespoke content surrounding each event. As a full screen solution, the ad includes a compelling, thumb-stopping illustrative image, an eye-catching headline and a brand logo. It’s a high impact format without becoming overly intrusive or invasive to the user’s app experience. ACTA (Call To Action) was also enabled to further drive traffic to the pieces of content that BNPP were looking to promote.

Through this powerful yet delicate approach , BNP Paribas were able to effortlessly align their name alongside green banking and sustainable finance practices in an authentic and genuine fashion , encouraging the recipients of the ad to alter their own pre-existing perceptions.

Another important aspect of our creative solution was down to the audience targeting . BNP Paribas wanted to reach a receptive, engaged and relevant audience with minimal wastage. Flipboard’s targeting opportunities fit this brief expertly. We were able to systematically segment relevant users via first party proprietary data in the form of ‘interests. In other words, we were able to target data based on insight from user’s selected interests, content consumption habits and most read topic s/themes . In this case, we targeted users based on their interest in Tech, Business, Thought Leadership, Entrepreneurship , and Politics. Through targeting these key interests, we were able to reach a relevant and receptive audience who would be most engaged with BNP Paribas’ message. Additionally, by bundling together  these related interests it meant we could target at scale, increasing our reach and impact without sacrificing relevancy.

The Media/Content Amplification Solution

Finding the right media partner on this campaign was the initial challenge we faced. With an aim of changing consumer perceptions, it was important that the environment was aligned with the cause. After initial deliberations, it became clear that Flipboard, our content discovery platform, was the perfect environment to house this campaign.

Flipboard is a content aggregator with a world-class editorial team hand selecting important content spanning over 4,000 topics. Flipboard’s audience is largely made up of ‘newsies’ who are interested in international events, including business and finance developments , so we knew from the beginning that it would be a good match.

Primary research has suggested that Flipboard has higher ad recall rates amongst consumers than any other social media platform. Flipboard users and consumers are tuned-in and engaged with the content in front of them, making them more responsive to brand messaging. Additionally, they enjoy the process to exploring new topics and hearing about new ideas, which in the age of ‘fake news’ and endless internet content has become very challenging. However, as a trusted and reliable aggregator, Flipboard has become a safe environment for users to do just that, making it the perfect space for a BNP Paribas to adjust consumer attitudes towards its brand.

The strategy of this campaign was inherently focused around the three international sustainability events. As a two-stage process, BNP Paribas wanted to run two bursts within each event, differentiating between stage 1 (the pre event) and stage 2 (the actual event). We were able to implement this strategy on Flipboard by broadening our target locations for stage 1 and zoning in on the key event location for stage 2. For example, for COP 25 the UN Climate Change Conference, we targeted the US East and West Coast as well as Multi European markets for stage 1 in order to increase the reach and awareness of BNP’s message globally. For stage 2, we only targeted Spain, with a focus on Madrid, which was where the event was being taken place. This allowed BNP Paribas to zone in on the key individuals most geographically associated with COP 25 in order to effectively and authentically promote its alignment the event and sustainable banking.

The Result

With a well matched and engaged audience , Flipboard  proved to  be the perfect partner on this campaign. BNP Paribas were able to  enforce its key message  of positive banking and sustainable finance to  a business  conscious audience  who were actively  engaging with the content. Doing so in  such a trusted environment  with a seamless native solution were the key components to enabling BNP Paribas to create a shift in perception in the eyes of its consumers .

This campaign saw users actively engaging with BNP’s message, seeing impressive CTR’s hitting peaks of up to 0.75% across the three events (well within benchmarks of 0.5-1% ). This showcases how much the users were responding to the ad and fulfilling BNP Paribas’ aim of driving traffic to its content . We also observed that the business section was the best performing interest in relation to CTR’s for both the IMF and PRI campaign. This proves that our strategy of aligning business focused individuals with BNP Paribas’ message was highly effective.

The success of this campaign is proved even further evident by the fact that BNP Paribas are looking to run similar executions in 2020 leading up the next COP 25 conference in a bid to continue their long-term sustainable development strategy .