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Nationwide Financial and Merkle Win Marketer Quarterly's Best Cross-Channel Campaign - Financial Services

We are thrilled to announce Nationwide Financial in partnership with Merkle have been awarded Marketer Quarterly’s Best Cross-Channel Campaign for Financial Services.

This campaign targeted over 300,000 participants in Nationwide Financial employer-sponsored retirement plans. The campaign theme was “Be Your Own Hero” and communicated a sense of empowerment – many participants lack confidence in their ability to retire as they desire.  “Be Your Own Hero” encouraged retirement plan participants to take charge of their retirement savings right now – even if in a small way.

This two-month campaign ran in the Fall of 2016, coinciding with National Retirement Security Week (NRSW). NRSW is an effort by the National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators, Inc. to educate workers “on the need to save for retirement no matter what their age.”

Marketing Quarterly Award won by Merkle, Nationwide

Nationwide’s multi-touch campaign combined traditional channels, like direct mail and email, and overlaid addressable display and targeted social for amplification. Creative assets incorporated a video with Nationwide spokesman Peyton Manning, who was interestingly experiencing his own retirement from the National Football League at the time. Sales force collateral rounded out the support materials to ensure the front line was armed with similar messaging – creating a truly omni-channel experience.

The Results? It was a success! Measured against a hold out control group, contact center calls increased 70%, contributions increased 50% and roll-ins of funds from other retirement savings plans into Nationwide plans increased 98%.

The NRSW campaign is part of a larger Participant Engagement Program, which Merkle helped Nationwide Retirement Solutions launch in 2012. The program was developed in response to concerning statistics that showed plan participants did not know if they were prepared for retirement or what to do about it. And the concern is still very real. One recent study sites “only 18% of employees said that they were very confident in their ability to retire comfortably”. The Employee Benefit Research Institute reports there is still about 30% of U.S. workers who aren’t even saving for retirement.

The charter of this program is to help participants prepare for – and live in – retirement successfully. We call this ‘retirement readiness’ – a laser-focused strategy that gives plan participants the tools they need to face retirement with confidence. We realize retirement planning is a low-engagement category – meaning interaction with retirement planning happens infrequently and typically aligns with a major lifestage event like marriage, the birth of a child, or a career promotion. This program’s focus is to educate and motivate its participants throughout life to think about retirement before it’s too late. Proudly, this program perfectly reflects Nationwide’s corporate mission of being a trusted partner to its members – to help them protect and grow what matters most.

We want to thank Nationwide Financial for being amazing partners and congratulate them on this well-deserved award!