March 28, 2012 at 12:50 PM EDT
“Welcome In” to American Express’ Newest Brand Campaign Entitled, “The Membership Effect”

American Express announced the launch of its latest television and digital brand campaign entitled, “The Membership Effect,” which chronicles the power of the unique benefits and innovations available to the millions of American Express Cardmembers and merchant partners connecting globally every day.

The campaign is the centerpiece of a broader effort that American Express is taking to educate its customers about the potential that American Express offers to connect people to possibilities through the power of its network, or “The Membership Effect.” The American Express network connects millions of consumers, merchants and businesses around the globe in a payments and commerce ecosystem that creates value for all its participants. American Express is built on relationships, insights gleaned from data, and the ability to use these assets to enhance lives and build business success for its customers.

The campaign aims to showcase how American Express delivers benefits, rewards, savings and experiences for customers and services and relationships that help its merchant partners succeed through television spots featuring actor/comedian Aziz Ansari, chef/restaurateur Thomas Keller and the Company’s Small Business Saturday initiative.

The campaign also introduces a new tagline for American Express, “Welcome In,” to highlight that membership in a networked world is inclusive, ambitious and emphasizes the advantages that come from belonging to the American Express community, called out as “the power of all of us.”

The campaign kicked off on March 15 and has aired during primetime lineups on CBS, NBC and Fox and will include such network hits as American Idol, Glee, CSI, Big Bang Theory, Saturday Night Live, Touch, Smash and The Voice. Thirty-second and sixty-second versions of the Keller and Small Business Saturday executions will air across more than two dozen broadcast and cable networks including AMC, ESPN, TBS and Comedy Central throughout the spring. The digital campaign includes a heavy presence across Facebook, Twitter and Apple’s iAd mobile platform.

Two new executions featuring Ansari begin airing today.

“Through the unique American Express ecosystem of buyers and sellers, we have the ability to offer our Cardmembers and merchant partners additional value and service. Nowhere is that more evident than with our collaborations with Facebook, foursquare and, most recently, Twitter -- which allow us to connect and facilitate both experiences and commerce between Cardmembers and merchants,” said John Hayes, Chief Marketing Officer, American Express. “The Membership Effect captures that idea, of how American Express is creating powerful connections and shared value between the members of the American Express community of consumers, merchants and small business owners.”

Several American Express programs that capitalize on the power and potential of “The Membership Effect” are highlighted in the advertising campaign, including:

Creating Rich Experiences for Cardmembers

American Express partnered with Aziz Ansari to develop three humorous spots showing how he is able to take advantage of exclusive offers for American Express Cardmembers by “syncing” his Card to Facebook, Twitter and foursquare. A :60 spot takes Ansari on a journey with the help of his American Express Card following his quest to win the heart of a young woman, and two :30 versions show Ansari feeding his love of kayaking and the tuba. The ads illustrate how American Express uses social media platforms to add value to Cardmembers by allowing seamless redemption of merchant offers without the need for coupons or special codes.

Delivering Value to Businesses

The spots featuring Thomas Keller share how “The Membership Effect” benefits him as a small business owner and American Express merchant partner. Throughout the spot, Keller shares how American Express harnesses the power of its network of buyers and sellers to grow his business and provides insights and tools that help him expand his customer base and support the local economy in Yountville, California, home to his first restaurant The French Laundry, and beyond.

Consumers and Communities Connecting to Support Small Business

American Express’ successful Small Business Saturday initiative – which drives millions of consumers to small businesses around the country – is profiled in multiple television spots to highlight the role that American Express, consumers and merchants play to support an important economic engine: small business.

For more information on “The Membership Effect,” visit www.americanexpress.com/me. All of the spots can be viewed online at www.youtube.com/americanexpress.

About American Express

American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, twitter.com/americanexpress and youtube.com/americanexpress.

Contacts:

American Express
Caitlin Lowie, 212-640-2921
caitlin.m.lowie@aexp.com
or
PMK*BNC
Heter Myers, 212-373-6111
heter.myers@pmkbnc.com
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