Benedict Cumberbatch voices FSCS radio adverts

8th August 2013

Radio adverts support campaign to raise awareness about consumer protection

The FSCS has hired Benedict Cumberbatch, the award-winning actor renowned for his portrayal of the BBC’s Sherlock, to voice the updated radio adverts as part of its wider consumer awareness campaign.

Launched in January 2013, the second phase of the campaign runs through to 31 March 2014 and seeks to reassure people about the safety of their savings. The campaign features ‘Icons of Protection’, with visuals designed to be simple and clear but with a bold visual style to grab people’s attention. The campaign includes print, radio and digital display advertising, as well as an informative campaign microsite,

As part of this, Benedict Cumberbatch has recorded the two updated radio clips – which are now airing on a range of commercial radio stations. The cost for this round of radio adverts is in line with those of earlier versions, and represents only a fraction of the total budget for the 15 month phase of the campaign.

The total budget of £3 million for this phase of the campaign equates to less than 0.5% of the amount spent yearly by the financial services industry on marketing and advertising.

FSCS was in the spotlight following problems at Northern Rock and the failure of five banks in 2008/09, including Bradford & Bingley and Icesave. Research suggests there is still a lack of awareness of FSCS protection available to consumers.

Mark Neale, Chief Executive of FSCS, said: “The Financial Services Compensation Scheme protects people when authorised financial services firms go bust. Our research shows a lack of understanding and knowledge about the protection that we provide. Our awareness campaign, which includes the latest version of the radio advert, is designed to reassure the majority that their money and savings are safe, and warn those who unwittingly put their money at risk.

“This campaign has the support of industry organisations and trade bodies who see benefits in consumers being more aware of FSCS protection.”

FSCS, which is independent and free to consumers, has helped more than 4.5m people and paid out more than £26bn since 2001. The financial services industry funds the scheme through a compulsory levy.