Western Union Says ‘Yes’ to $250 Mil. Effort

Western Union, the provider of worldwide money transfer services, is launching its first unified global marketing effort. To date, the 150-year-old brand, which services 200 countries, offered only a series of disparate marketing messages.

That will change this week with its new $250 million “Yes!” campaign. Two years in the making, the TV, print and out-of-home creative will be translated into 40 languages. Created by Publicis, Hong Kong, the effort is meant to humanize the brand among its core “international migrant” customers.

The debut TV spot shows the letters of the word “yes” floating across the global landscape. The message: “Every day millions of people around the world are moving their lives forward and making things happen by saying yes to a brighter future.” Fifty print ads, featuring photographs of real people, will pepper international publications.

“It was alarming that we didn’t have a cohesive brand approach, look and feel or consistency of brand message,” said CMO Gail Galuppo, who joined the company 16 months ago.

Galuppo hired Leo Burnett, Chicago, to craft the unified brand strategy. “The campaign is based around our customer, people on the move in pursuit of their dream,” she said. This dream generally includes wiring money back home to family. “There are 200 million international migrants, people who left home…North Africans in Europe, Mexicans in the United States…”

Customers will be asked to share their stories at Powerofyes.com, which launches Feb. 23. For each story shared, the Western Union Foundation will donate up to a total of $100,000 to Room to Read, Mercy Corps and the Academy for Educational Development.

The $250 million budget includes other marketing activity including sponsorships and the inclusion of the new message at its 365,000 agent locations worldwide.