PRWeek UK Awards Winners 2021: Financial Services

This award was won by Taylor Herring for Santander for a campaign around making the issue of fraud entertaining and engaging to key audiences.

National treasure Pam Ayres and contemporary spoken word artist Suli Breaks
National treasure Pam Ayres and contemporary spoken word artist Suli Breaks

Winner – 'Santander: Scam Sonnets', Taylor Herring for Santander

Taylor Herring was tasked with making fraud – a topic often seen as dry and confined to the financial pages – entertaining and engaging, with evidence that fraudsters were seizing on growing uncertainty as the pandemic took hold. 

The agency identified two distinct, vulnerable target audiences: people aged over 55, who are the most common victims of investment scams, and social media users targeted by cryptocurrency scams. To get through to those respective groups it worked with poet and national treasure Pam Ayres and contemporary spoken word artist Suli Breaks, commissioning the two to create works based on the language used by real scammers in Santander’s fraud case studies. 

The talent recorded video performances of their Scam Sonnets, which were released on National Poetry Day (1 October 2020) along with original data revealing the average amount lost by Brits to fraud to be £10,000, and tips to help consumers avoid scams.

Ayres and Breaks participated in a total of 20 broadcast interviews reciting their poems and reflecting on their own experiences of being targeted by scammers. More than 100 editorial pieces, including 12 national news outlets, picked up the story, and social media content far outperformed prior output on Santander’s channels.

The campaign also prompted 3,800 people to register for virtual scam awareness events from Santander and a 20 per cent uptick in visits to the FCA’s ScamSmart site. The FT’s Claer Barrett said the campaign “should be commended for educating all customers, not just Santander’s own”.

The judges said

Showing creativity is difficult to find in a well-trodden topic like fraud. This engaging, insight-driven campaign didn’t just make a big impact in terms of coverage and reach, it got tangible results.

Highly Commended – 'The Savage Short', The Romans for Santander

Remember that scene in The Big Short where Margot Robbie explains the financial crash while sipping Champagne in a bath? The Romans clearly do – and so they reshot it, this time with ex-footballer Robbie Savage explaining the dangers of 'safe account' fraud, scoring coverage for Santander with MailOnline, The Times, the BBC and beyond.


'A Shave Too Close' by Grayling for Lloyds Bank

'Data for public good' by Barclaycard

'Money Positive' by Brands2Life for Experian

'Shop Small by American Express: We're Open' by American Express with Hope&Glory for American Express

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