Aruba Bank: a service design approach to revitalise a brand



A good brand promise is one thing. Keeping that promise in servicing customers is something else. That implies getting rid of internal barriers that restrain a brand from offering truly customer-centered service. It also requires communication building blocks that enable an organisation to carry out the brand promise internally and externally. A service design approach helps realising all this.   

Ambitious levels

Aruba Bank is without exaggeration the banking trendsetter in Aruba. Its boards’ ambition is to offer a truly customer-focused service. A promise that absolutely suits the time we’re living in. But how does this work out in practice? Can Aruba Bank fulfill this promise to its customers? The bank asked us, together with Maatschap voor Communicatie, to revitalise the brand in order to fulfill that ambition. Aruba Bank wanted a more customer-focused strategy and a new look & feel.

A service design approach

With customer journeys we mapped the needs and behaviours of the main target groups of Aruba Bank. With the staff we linked this to the internal processes. That’s when it became interesting. Despite the boards’ ambition to answer to the needs of customers, real life showed a different story. Internal barriers started to emerge.





We also examined the different communication means of the bank: how do they contribute to a customer-focused service? We found the original communication concept had become outdated and the different means lost its consistency.

Show, don’t tell

By visualizing customer needs, internal obstacles and inconsistency of communication we enabled staff and middle management to start a dialogue with the board. We facilitated intensive communication sessions where middle management could literally show how inefficiently the internal processes were organised.


aruba-bank-service-design-2 Communication workshop with the middle management


Living the brand

Based on the outcome of the internal dialogue sessions we developed a new strategy and communication concept. This empowered the bank to make important decisions for Aruba Bank to become truly customer-focused:

  • Customer-focused attitude and behaviour are now financially rewarded.
  • The management board adopted a portfolio for internal communications. Internal communications is now also part of appraisals.
  • The communication concept introduced a dialogue between customers and Aruba Bank. Needs are recognised and answered. 
  • We developed a new look & feel for all communication means and created a tool to maintain the visual identity.



Partnership works

The joined effort of Edenspiekermann, Maatschap voor Communicatie (Frithjof de Haan and Henriëtte Nieuwenhuizen) and Gouldassociates (copywriters: Michael Gould and Alastair Bruce) proved a successful combination to facilitate methods of making a living brand, even in a short period of time.