Case study

How Emirates Islamic bank built new customer connections with Amazon Ads

Emirates Islamic bank cards along with accessories

Emirates Islamic bank is one of the largest Islamic financial institutions in the UAE, serving millions of customers every day.

The banking industry in the UAE is highly performance-focused and competitive, with many local and international banks vying for their market share.1 This makes it challenging for banks in the region to differentiate themselves and drive leads and conversions, while also facing cost-efficiency targets. Financial services advertisers are continuously looking for ways to connect with consumers to drive awareness and consideration of their brand and products, as well as lower-funnel actions like adoption and retention.

E-commerce sales across the region are also booming. From 2019 to 2022, the UAE’s retail e-commerce sales grew from $2.6 billion to $5.7 billion, with a projected growth to $9.2 billion by 2026. This means that there has never been a better time for finance brands to reach audiences in e-commerce environments.

With this in mind, the Emirates Islamic team approached Amazon Ads with one clear challenge: How could they truly differentiate themselves from the competition?

Putting the customer’s needs front and center

In 2022, Emirates Islamic wanted to explore new ways to drive customer engagement and encourage UAE customers to sign up for an Emirates Islamic bank card.

As the banking industry evolves, customers are expecting more from their banks.2 In an industry study, 79% of financial services customers said that the experience that a company provides is as important as their products and services.3

Amazon Ads recommended an approach that would help Emirates Islamic reach and connect with customers in a meaningful way, by creating compelling campaigns for their product offerings to customers, including the Flex Elite, Skywards, and Etihad Guest cards, and offering gift cards as an incentive to increase registrations. This approach put customers at the heart of the campaign, giving them different options depending on their needs.

To reach relevant audiences, Amazon Ads also recommended that Emirates Islamic consider connecting with customers during the busy Q4 peak season. This is one of the busiest shopping periods of the year, with holiday celebrations, cultural moments, and an array of discounts and deals across retailers fueling purchases.

Emirates Islamic bank rewards

Emirates Islamic campaign creatives showcasing their product offerings to customers, including the Flex Elite, Skywards, and Etihad Guest cards.

Connecting customers with products

To generate maximum brand awareness and consideration, Amazon Ads created a landing page for Emirates Islamic on This was partnered with a homepage takeover campaign that ran across for a 24-hour period, helping generate visibility and awareness.

Emirates Islamic also used Amazon’s audience segmentation capability based on shopping signals, which helped ensure that audiences saw the most relevant credit-card products. In addition to strategic and market insights, the client also worked with Amazon Ads on creative options to produce visually appealing and engaging ads.

Amazon Ads landing page

Emirates Islamic landing page on partnered with a homepage takeover campaign

The results

Emirates Islamic bank’s homepage takeover campaign received the highest click-through rate (CTR) for any UAE financial services industry campaign across Amazon Ads in the region to date.

The campaign generated a higher CTR during the 24-hour period than the industry benchmark, as well as a higher number of delivered impressions than the industry benchmarks.

Emirates Islamic leveraged Amazon DSP to reach the relevant audiences across placements wherever they spend time. The continual optimization drove conversion efficiency, and within the first two months of the campaign, the cost per lead (CPL) dropped by 80% (based on Amazon attribution) vs. the first four weeks of the campaign, which enabled Emirates Islamic to tactically re-allocate more budget into lengthening the Amazon gift-card campaign duration by a month. This then produced a further 53% month-on-month drop in CPL.

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In a highly complex digital marketing environment, we are always seeking optimal solutions to help increase awareness as well as uptake of our products and services. We are extremely pleased to collaborate with Amazon Ads and Amazon Gift Cards in our credit-card marketing campaign, providing us the agility and flexibility to achieve our campaign objectives. The collaboration helped us successfully combine our target of high awareness with lead performance, resulting in a high return on investment for the campaign.

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— Emirates Islamic

Results in this case study are representative of a single advertiser/campaign and are not indicative of future performance.

1 UAE Banking Perspectives report, KPMG, UAE, 2021
2 2023 Banking and Capital Markets Outlook report, Deloitte Center for Financial Services, 2023
3 IHS Markit, US, 2020