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Portfolio: Marshmallows, Dog Opera, Deer Violence

A showcase of 11 different creative marketing initiatives from banks and credit unions around the world.

Citi – “Kinda The Same Thing”

Someone snapped a photo of this transit ad from Citi. The bank can certainly benefit from a little lighthearted humor right now.

Three Rivers FCU – “Happy Dog”

This 30-second TV spot, made specifically to air during the 2010 Superbowl, involves a clever pairing between the soundtrack and visuals: a dog puts his head out of a car window and his gums flap in the wind to a victorious operetic performance. It’s fun to watch. Agency: Weber Marketing Group.


Keesler FCU – “Money Talks”

Keesler had the opportunity to teach financial education at Biloxi High School. To support the effort, agency Raoust + Partners created “Money Talks,” a Gen-Y style financial literacy program including a letter to parents, wearables, posters, pamphlets, and stickers.

St. George Bank – “Big Enough, Small Enough”

In this brand ad campaign for one of Australia’s larger financial instituions, St. George depicts itself as a “big bank,” something that has been out of vogue lately. The message: “Just because you’re big, doesn’t mean you have to act like it.”


Bucks First FCU – “Violent & Awesome Commercial”

This Pennsylvania credit union teamed with internet sensations Rhett & Link (formerly of Alka Seltzer fame) to create an online commercial that must be seen to be to be believed. The video opens with a guy wearing a deer — err, make that a “buck” — costume getting hit by a car. The concientious motorists take the wounded buck to Bucks First FCU because they “treat bucks right.” Get it? The 90-second pun-o-rama has been viewed over 365,000 times with an average rating of 4.5 start (out of 5). Some observers in the financial industry have heralded the spot as an online marketing and social media triumph deluxe, while others have wondered if the video sends the right message about the credit union’s level of professionalism and financial acumen. What do you think?


Raddon | Strategic Guidance for Accelerated Growth

Missouri Bank – Website

The first thing you should notice is how clean and refreshingly uncluttered the site is — markedly unbanklike. Then there is the interactive wall of testimonials with pictures and quotes from 75 different bank customers right on the homepage. This is one of the more interesting bank websites you’ll see.

Community Savings – “Piece of the Pie”

In Canada, it’s quite common for credit unions to give some of their profits back to members as “patronage dividends.” Promoting them the way Community Savings did prior to its merger with Servus is not common, however. The credit union boxed pies and printed messages on napkins encouraging everyone to “get their piece of the pie.” It’s a fresh take on what is arguably the hardest working pun in the financial industry.

ANZ – “Fraud Squad”

Australian Bank ANZ (pronounced “a-n-zed”) debuts a pair of spots about fraud, unauthorized online purchases and its “Fraud Money-Back Guarantee.” The spots portray the bank’s fictional Fraud Squad as a ridiculously zealous group with some wildly innovative (if not impractical) ideas for how to keep customers safe. The five-week campaign is supported by outdoor, online and ATM marketing. Agency: DDB Melbourne.



Department of Commerce FCU – “Auto Loans”

Agency Raoust + Partners turned what could have been just another boring auto loan product promotion into something visually interesting by drawing on car-related imagery. The checkered flag, chrome lettering and dashboard gauges are nice touches.

Raddon | Strategic Guidance for Accelerated Growth

Golden 1 Credit Union – “No Bailouts.”

Many banks and credit unions have been quite comfortable — and arguably successful — celebrating a single point of differentiation: they are too small for bailouts. While the heyday of headlines like “Bailouts are for boats” and anti-jet banners has passed, there’s enough residual consumer resentment towards the financial industry that the bailout-bashing angle still has some traction.

Pinnacle Bank – “Move Your Money”

Like many community banks, Pinnacle wanted to make the most out of Huffington’s “Move Your Money” populist campaign, so they created this email marketing piece. The message isn’t promotional nor self-serving in any way. It simply invites people to check out the “Move Your Money” website and viral YouTube video. Lots of banks looked to capitalize on Huffington’s efforts, but not that many were willing to help promote like this.

All content © 2017 by The Financial Brand and may not be reproduced by any means without permission.

Digital Banking Report | 2017 Marketing Trends


  1. Regarding the Bucks First commercial, We were approached by Rhett and Link for a free commercial on their website. Which was something we just couldn’t pass up!

    We have never felt that the content within the commercial takes away from our professional attitude towards our members finances. Some people we have talked to, like the fact that we have a sense of humor to have done a commercial like that.

    In our area we are surrounded by very big corporate banks, we knew a commercial from Rhett and Link might help us stand out from the crowd and it did just that!

    We also feel that the commercial has helped put credit unions in front of a lot of people that may have never even heard of a credit union. You can see some people question what a credit union is on the youtube comments section of our video.

  2. Hi Braden. Thanks for the comment. When people in the industry sent the spot in to The Financial Brand with their comments, most people were enthusiastically supportive, and no one questioned the level of professionalism at Bucks First. The concerns shared were specifically regarding how the spot portrayed the credit union. They wondered if it projected the right image.

    A little while ago, I was discussing how many members and potential members were among the 350K viewers with your co-worker Hilary Reed. She suggested that the data was being tracked. Can you share more details along these lines? How many people who live in Pennsylvania viewed the video?

    Also, did a 30-second version ever air on TV?

    Thanks again.

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