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A Three-Year Sponsorship Journey


A top four Australian bank with a strong diversity and inclusion mission and message.


NAB employees, the community and thousands of festival-goers.


To communicate (and celebrate) that NAB is an inclusive workplace for the LGBTI community.

The challenge

With corporate sponsorships often appearing tokenistic, how does a ‘big bank’ become an authentic part of the LGBTI community? With a three-year sponsorship in-hand NAB was embarking on a journey that needed to be meaningful for both its employees and the community at large.


“I loved working with Aesthetic on our activation for Midsumma Carnival. The concept they came up with was nothing short of awesome and our activation on the day was smart, engaging and authentic.”

Cimon Smith, Brand Consultant, NAB

The solution

Inherent complexities required a workable and phased approach that engaged diverse audience groups. Listen. Facilitate. Participate. These three actions would become the driving-force behind a strategic three-year sponsorship journey.

Year One: Listen. Careful not to make any assumptions about who the audience was and what was important to them, Truth or Dare was created to encourage attendees to feel open and proud of who they are. NAB was there to listen, observe and build a meaningful experience.



Year Two: Facilitate. Using the insights gained from ‘listening’, NAB’s Share House was designed to facilitate conversation and connection. Continuing with the theme of personal exploration, friends, families and strangers were faced with questions that would encourage open and honest communication.

Year Three: Participate. As festival-goers now saw NAB’s sponsorship as coming from a genuine place, the Memory Bank activation invited them to build something with NAB. A hybrid experience – live and digital – a custom web-app allowed people to ‘phone-in’ and share their stories, immediately adding them to a digital time capsule that people could listen to at Carnival and beyond.

The outcome

With each consecutive activation, NAB has garnered the trust of festival attendees through a strategically planned journey. Benefits have spread to NAB employees; internal surveys have demonstrated an upward trend in the percentage who feel comfortable to identify as LGBTI in the workplace. Employee volunteer numbers for the festival have also grown with each year.

“It’s not every day that our employees get to part of an activation that’s delivering meaningful experiences to over 100,000 people.”  Tony Dang, Pride@NAB Chair

For a deeper immersion into the strategy and activations behind NAB’s three-year sponsorship journey, a full case study is available to download here.