Interviews

Eva Eisenschimmel, Managing Director (Customers, Brands, Digital and Telephone Banking), Lloyds Banking Group

Eva joined Lloyds Banking Group in September 2010 as Managing Director, Group Marketing and Direct Channels and to head up the Group's Internet, Mobile and Telephone Banking channels

Tom Holmes

Founder & Chairman

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Tom Holmes talks to Eva Eisenschimmel, Managing Director, Customers, Brands, Digital and Telephone Banking, Lloyds Banking Group (LBG).

Eva joined Lloyds Banking Group in September 2010 as Managing Director, Group Marketing and Direct Channels and to head up the Group's Internet, Mobile and Telephone Banking channels. Eva is also responsible for developing and delivering customer centred brand strategies for Halifax, LloydsTSB and Bank of Scotland as well as for the Group's specialist brands such as Cheltenham & Gloucester, Sainsbury’s Bank and Birmingham Midshires.

Previously, Eva was the Chief Operating Officer at EDF Energy, where she modernised the Customer Branch, played a lead role in the acquisition and integration of British Energy (£12.5 billion) and the disposal of the Networks business unit. Prior to EDF, she was general manager for relationship marketing at British Airways. She has also held marketing positions at Häagen-Daz, United Distillers and Allied Domecq.

 

Creativebrief: As Lloyds Banking Group Managing Director Customers, Brands, Digital and Telephone Banking, what is your primary focus?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I’m lucky to lead the teams responsible for Brand Management & Marketing, Customer Value Management, Digital and Telephone Banking. Our primary focus is to serve our customers and to do everything we can to drive Lloyds Banking Group towards being the best bank for customers, colleagues and communities.

Creativebrief: What are the main challenges for your sector/category over the next 12 months?

Eva Eisenschimmel: First, I’d call out the challenge of ensuring that each customer’s experience is designed and delivered to be joined up across multiple channels and touchpoints; this is far from simple. Next is reinforcing the pride of colleagues within the Bank who do a fantastic job and are driven to do the right thing for customers, yet have to read so many harsh, and often untruthful, things about themselves in the media. And, third is the requirement to address fast moving regulatory change and ensure it keeps pace with the technological developments driving consumer behaviour.

Creativebrief: What are the advantages to LBG of having a centralised brands and marketing unit?

Eva Eisenschimmel: We are fortunate in having a portfolio of iconic brands and the central team is designed to first define the strategy for each of these in the competitive and customer context, as well as ensure that each is distinctive, well positioned and appropriately funded. Then, the team develops the communications plans to optimise that investment across myriad channels, before producing the materials required and managing the partnerships which are so key to successful brand management. This central team also works very closely with colleagues in Customer Value Management to ensure they make full use of our customer insight, with colleagues in the Products team who design the offers for customers by brand, and with colleagues in the three channels who bring the whole brand promise to life through their daily contact with our customers.

Creativebrief: Your career has spanned LBG, EDF Energy, Allied Domecq, British Airways, Mars, Accenture, United Distillers and Haagen-Dazs, what have been the high points?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I have been so lucky to work in such diverse sectors, but there are three common threads which bind my experience: great brands, customer focus and great people. I learned about inspirational leadership at Mars, the value of corporate entrepreneurship at Haagen-Dazs, the power of innovation at Allied Domecq, how to manage through a crisis at British Airways and the criticality of responsible business at EDF Energy.

Creativebrief: Along the way, which marketers have particularly impressed and inspired you?

Eva Eisenschimmel: My first, and brilliant, brands teacher was Monica Woo at United Distillers – an amazing marketer who taught me the importance of balancing judgement and intuition with data and analysis. But I have learned loads from Peter Littlewood at Mars, Simon Esberger at Haagen-Dazs, Steve Yelland at Protocol, Mike Hoban at British Airways and am learning more now from Catherine Kehoe at Lloyds Banking Group.

Creativebrief: What work you have done recently makes you the most proud?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I’d like to think that we don’t use work that we aren’t proud of. We were thrilled at the end of 2011 to win the Overall Marketing Effectiveness Award from the Financial Service Forum – as it’s the impact of the work that matters most and recognition from your peers is wonderful. I’m proud of the new work for the Halifax and for the Bank of Scotland, as well as the current account focused campaign for Lloyds TSB. And, I’m enormously proud of the apps we launched last year for each brand, which took number one, two and three slots in the rankings in the Apple App Store. So far, in a couple of months, we’ve had over 1.4 million downloads (Lloyds TSB app, Halifax app, Bank of Scotland app)

 
 
 
 

Creativebrief: How do you see the media landscape unfolding in the next 5 years?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I believe the main evolution will be the degree of inter-connection between media channels and communication devices. I’m sure we’ll be doing things in five years that we can’t even conceive of now!

Creativebrief: Do you prefer to use an ‘integrated’ agency approach or specialist agencies by individual discipline?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I personally prefer to use agencies with key areas of specialization, but this does require everyone to work closely together. I’ve usually found this leads to great work and a great team spirit.

Creativebrief: Do you prefer to use local agencies by market or international/global agencies?

Eva Eisenschimmel: I generally subscribe to the benefit of local agencies best understanding local markets and consumers, although lead agencies can ably develop brand strategies and architectures that span internationally.

Creativebrief: When choosing agencies in the past were you ever influenced by awards?

Eva Eisenschimmel: Usually, you’re aware of the great work by an agency before the awards follow and that’s what most strikes a chord.

Creativebrief: How often do you look at new agencies or review your roster?

Eva Eisenschimmel: As rarely as possible – as I value loyalty and the benefit of building long term partnerships. In any case, it often takes a year before a new marketing relationship is really firing on all cylinders so there needs to be a powerful reason to change. It is key to keep the relationship fresh of course.

Creativebrief: Would you ever consider awarding an agency business without a pitch? What would they have to do / demonstrate?

Eva Eisenschimmel: No, and my Sourcing colleagues wouldn’t allow it in any case.

Creativebrief: What are your top tips to agencies when presenting credentials to you?

Eva Eisenschimmel: Spend time learning about our business and trying to get to the heart of our brand heritage – and then electrify us with your vision and passion to help us build value.

Creativebrief: What was the most impressive agency presentation you have ever seen?

Eva Eisenschimmel: Adam and Eve presenting on the new campaign for the Halifax, Rainey Kelly presenting on Money Manager, and Euro RSCG presenting on Green Britain Day when I was at EDF Energy.