Ogilvy UK

Core disciplines: Integrated marketing

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American Express

Realise the Potential


As we move into our seventh year of the brand platform, we have seen significantly improved attitudes towards the brand overall with increased relevance and likelihood to apply scores. Business results have been equally encouraging. The quality of applicants has improved resulting in strong conversion rates. The first international product refresh on the new brand platform resulted in a 193% increase in acquisition rates.

The Challenge

American Express is one of the world’s most famous financial service brands. However, despite its 158-year heritage it’s a relative minnow on the international stage. What’s more, the brand has all too often been written off by today’s affluent prospects - only 22% believe it is the card for them - they believe that Amex is for someone older, richer and more well-travelled.

Realise the Potential

An Amex card is not just a transactional tool for buying things but a lifestyle tool that has ‘buying things’ as one of its functions.

When we talked to Cardmembers about Amex it became clear that they were unaware of the depth and breadth of the benefits available to them. Amex cards therefore contain a lot of untapped potential. We also discovered that people believe that they themselves have untapped potential in their lives, even though there is a restless urge in all of our audience to ‘do more’, to ‘live more’ and to fulfill their own potential. These two truths gave rise to the American Express brand belief that the world would be a better place if more of its untapped potential were set free, with Amex as the enabler. The ‘Realise the Potential’ brand strategy was born.

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