The sea has its own account. At last.

Grupo Bancolombia is one of the most important financial institutions in Latin America, with nearly 20 million customers spread across 4 countries: Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador and Panama.

The engine driving the machinery of this banking giant runs on this mantra: Good (profitable) businesses and good (for everyone). This blend of head and heart is the driving force behind the countless initiatives carried out by Grupo Bancolombia to work towards building well-being.
Undoubtedly, sustainability is one of the main areas at the core of these initiatives.

The challenge we faced was to define a strategy and a creative proposal to cover this territory legitimately and truthfully, given that greenwashing is now so prevalent.

"We have long treated the sea like a bank account. A bank account from which everyone withdraws but nobody ever deposits."
To solve the challenge, we turned our attention to the sea and the diagnosis above, made by Enric Sala, oceanographer and member of National Geographic's Pristine Seas programme.
What metaphor could be clearer than this for a bank to raise awareness about the critical situation the sea is facing? There was none :) That's why we decided it was finally time for the sea to have its own bank account, with funds allocated to taking care of it and those who depend on it, both directly and indirectly.
To communicate the launch of this unprecedented banking product, we decided the messages would not be negative or apocalyptic, but built on hope, acknowledging all that the sea gives us, and on the hope of reversing the damage caused.
We wanted citizens to be aware that, no matter where they live, the sea and all its gifts are as close to us as the air we breathe, thus increasing the degree of empathy and closeness with the sea.
La Cuenta del Mar
Another aspect that we did not want to neglect was legitimacy, which is why the banking group not only speaks up but also takes action: the banks that make up the Bancolombia Group (Bancolombia - Colombia -, BAM - Guatemala -, Banistmo - Panama - and Banco Agrícola - El Salvador -) were the first to contribute to La Cuenta del Mar. These banks allied with entities and institutions in their respective countries and financed local initiatives aimed at caring for the sea: Bancolombia and Banco Agrícola supported the Colombian and Salvadoran mangroves, respectively, BAM the conservation of endangered sea turtles on the Guatemalan coasts, and Banistmo the revitalisation and conservation of the biodiversity of the Panama Canal watershed.
Just as pessimism didn't seep into our messages on TV, radio, OOH, billboards, press, cinemas, social media..., it didn't influence the art direction that shaped the campaign either.

The sea, its wealth, and its people in their full splendor depicted in images are the protagonists of communication pieces, contributing to the consolidation of a still young brand identity. An especially relevant example of this is the treatment of one of the most iconic elements of this identity: its colorful strokes. For these strokes to be brand-building and at the same time give meaning to this specific campaign and theme, they were transformed into small colourful brushstrokes that evoked drops of salt water or small fish and schools of fish that draw waves and cross the photographic material that forms the pieces.
This project, as daunting and laborious as few others, leaves us with great satisfaction and a good taste in our mouths beyond the tremendous impact and the excellent results obtained. Never has a campaign been so "360" or reached so many: whether you are in Ciutadella, Santiago de Tulú, Chigasaki or Durban,
we are all bathed by the same sea.