7 Best Bank Ads of All Time

What comes to your mind when you think of banks? Maybe you imagine middle-aged men in suits, the Great Recession, a heist, or drab, dull, enormous buildings.

Generally speaking, it’s not a pretty sight, is it?

Makes us want to doze off.

So, advertising an establishment that makes people feel meh isn’t an easy task.

To reach out to people, bank ads should ideally appeal to viewers’ emotions.

This will make them appear more humane. But for bank ads to resonate with viewers and stand out from competitors, they’ll have to use out-of-the-box ideas.

It sounds like a tall order but it can be done.

Here are some bank ads that’ll inspire you to come up with a cool idea of your own.

They use some tried and tested techniques, so take notes!


1. Opportunity doesn’t do borders—HSBC UK

HSBC was born on the idea of a local bank serving international needs. It has been around for more than 150 years and has spread globally.

The ad uses a line-maker as a metaphor to show that physical, social, and cultural barriers are roadblocks to progress, but these obstacles can be overcome.

The ad features British comedian and actor Richard Ayoade and is a part of HSBC’s “We are not an island” campaign.

The video wraps up when Ayoade says, “Because when we go beyond borders, we find opportunity everywhere.”

Why we love this ad:

  • It uses a clever metaphor
  • The idea is simple and can easily be turned into a campaign
  • It’s a great use of emotional appeal
  • We’re big fans of Ayoade!
  • It makes us think about the various obstacles people from all walks of life face because of societal barriers


2. Woo Woo Monster—Wells Fargo



Whoever came up with the idea of using animals in an ad was a genius because this is so wholesome. Lulu and Lobo are relaxing on a sunny afternoon when the “woo-woo monster” startles them. The sound agitates Lulu, who now wants to move to another house.

Wells Fargo then swoops in to make its point.

The ad works because people don’t expect bank ads to feature cute dogs.

Why we love this ad:

  • The bank gets its point across while keeping viewers engaged
  • You forget for a minute that you’re being told about mortgage payments
  • Since it’s unconventional, it’s memorable
  • It’s adorable and cheerful

Related: 9 Best Documentary-Style Ads That Nailed It


3. Envelope—UOB Private Bank



United Overseas Bank’s advertisements are mostly focused on values and causes just like this one that focuses on the importance of forests.

Deforestation is an urgent matter that can’t be ignored. According to a report by WWF, we are losing forests at a rate of 27 soccer fields each minute.

UOB shows us the urgency of the issue and the importance of forests through this ad.

Why we love this ad:

  • It’s sentimental, it conveys the message linked to a cause
  • The background music is emotional and it reaches you
  • The ad leaves you with a powerful message: “Aren’t we all in it for the long run?”


4. The Moment – It’s About Time—Citi



Citi has made efforts to close the gender pay gap. It announced the advertising campaign “The Moment” in order to further its efforts surrounding pay equity, and this ad is part of it.

Citi’s ad featuring reactions from young girls in honor of International Girls Day draws attention to the gender pay and senior-level representation discrepancies.

According to the World Economic Forum, if the gender wage gap continues at its current rate, complete equality will take more than 200 years to achieve.

Citi is focusing on pay equity and representation within its company with this campaign and believes that their commitment will have a big impact across industries and geographic borders.

They asked a group of young girls (daughters of Citi employees) what they wanted to be when they grew up in an interview. After discussing their professional goals, they were startled and confused to learn that women are paid less than men. Their stunned and appalled expressions were captured on video.

Why we love this ad:

  • It revived the conversation about gender inequity in the workplace
  • It’s an ad but also an effort to support pay equity
  • You get to see things from a little girl’s perspective which is impactful

Read more: Video Ads vs. Image Ads: A Multi-Platform Comparison


5. Small business ad by American Express



In 2010, American Express launched “Small Business Saturday” to raise awareness for small local businesses and their communities, particularly during the holiday season. The holiday became official two years after its launch.

The company celebrated the completion of 8 years with Lin-Manuel Miranda and this ad.

Miranda’s story, as told in the video, is about how his Manhattan community of Washington Heights has driven his personal and professional development, and how American Express has supported him along the way.

Miranda, a cultural leader, a creative genius, and an advocate of local communities, has shown his dedication to his community. He has pushed to raise funds for the United Palace, a precious local theatre to him and cultural arts center, to be restored.

The Hamilton star and American Express met because of his strong devotion to the community.

Why we love this ad:

  • Lin-Manuel Miranda composed the ad’s soundtrack, “Maana,” during the multi-day shoot
  • We love it when big corporations support local, small businesses


6. We’re all better off with an ally—Ally



The ad features small clips of different experiences and each event is linked to a word that ends with ”ally”.

It’s a smart play on words. It’s a subtle way to improve brand recognition and position your company as your viewer’s literal ally.

Why we love this ad:

  • The copy is excellent. In just a few words, the ad tells a compelling story
  • The ad is wholesome and many people will find at least a few, if not all, of the milestones relatable

Related: 12 Video Marketing Examples to Inspire Your Next Video


 7. Drumbeat—Lloyds Bank



Lloyds Bank’s iconic black horses make an epic comeback with Drumbeat. This campaign’s centerpiece is a 60-second showing horses galloping through familiar landscapes, moving with majesty and power as everyday life continues.

In the beginning, you only see glances of the horses. A few seconds later, the herd comes fully into view and then halts.

The ad wraps up with a reassuring message: “Lloyds Bank is always by your side”.

Which is comforting to hear especially as the world is still reeling from the pandemic.

Why we love this ad:

  • There is no storyline. The visuals and voiceover are impactful on their own.
  • The ad features an original orchestral version of Rag ‘N’ Bone Man’s “Giant,” recorded by Calvin Harris.


That’s a wrap!

Bank ads require creativity and that’s why most of them are full of jokes, emotions and fun.

One of the most important takeaways from all these bank ads is the importance of delivery.

It doesn’t matter if the ad is 30 seconds or two minutes, if the story-telling is on point, there’s nothing that can stop a well-made ad from making an impact on viewers.

We hope you enjoyed these bank ads examples and got inspiration to create something of your own. Do you need help putting your best bank advertising ideas into practice? Let’s talk!

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Posted by Samra Tiwana

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