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Branding Strategy

Can Credit Unions Afford a National Campaign?

The subject of a national campaign for credit unions has been widely debated over the years. Some argue about whether it should be a brand campaign or an awareness campaign. Others dispute…

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GEICO’s Crazy Ad Strategy Breaks the Rules

"People can now accept more complex brands with multiple, distinct narratives highlighting various aspects of the brand." -- The Martin Agency, about its GEICO ads GEICO uses more branded characters at one…

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Westpac Resurrecting Dead Brand for Online Direct Arm?

Australian bank Westpac is considering reviving the Bank of Melbourne brand it retired years ago following an acquisition. Westpac is reportedly planning to relaunch the Bank of Melbourne as on online internet…

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The Ad Ally Would Run If It Was Really Honest

When Ally Bank was borne from the ashes of GMAC earlier this year, the bank's CMO told us that "talking straight" is one of the three principles at the heart of the…

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Commerzbank Blends Brands Following Merger

"A strong company needs a strong brand." -- Commerzbank When the third-largest bank in Germany merged with the second-largest, it left a big question: What to do about the brands? Easy. Pair…

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Four Things Your Brand Must Be

Four principles serve as the underpinning for every great brand: differentiation, relevancy, credibility and irreproducibility. If your brand doesn't meet these four criteria, you've still got some work to do.

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Virgin Should Shock Just About Everyone

Some may question Sir Richard Branson’s timing. Why would he launch a bank now? Well, for starters, Branson is exceptionally good with money. Who better to run a bank than a guy…

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‘All People Ages 18-55’ Is Not Your Target Audience

Financial institutions that think their target audience includes basically everyone with money and a heartbeat are severely crippling their branding efforts.

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HSBC Microsite: ‘Join the Values Conversation’

HSBC has introduced new components supporting its Soapbox promotion, including a microsite, TV spots and an exclusive sponsorship of the New York magazine video section. The ValuesSoapBox.com (below) publishes people's comments on…

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It Only Matters If It’s Measured

Ever since First Federal Bank in Sioux City, Iowa, rechristened itself "Vantus," the bank had been building its brand entirely around the idea of "simpler banking." (UPDATE: The bank has failed.) From…

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Is ‘Common Bond’ Part of Your Brand?

Credit unions, as not-for-profit organizations, are required to limit their membership in order to qualify for their untaxed status. Historically, this helped create a "common bond" between credit unions and their members.…

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What’s the Return on Branding?

A number of financial institutions ask, "What's the ROI on branding?" It's often the bean counters who ask this question. They want to see a "demonstrable rate of return" before making any…

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HSBC ‘Different Points of Value’

HSBC has been positioning itself as the "worldwide local bank" for a while now. They are a bank that takes pride in understanding the subtleties of cultural differences. Last year, they introduced…

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Inside-Out vs. Outside-In

Here are two different approaches to building a brand strategy. 1) INSIDE-OUT You pick your own brand direction. You take a stand, confidently go out to the world and declare, “This is…

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Caja Navarra: Pioneers in Civic Banking

In northern Spain, there's a bank that really gets branding. It's called Caja Navarra, or CAN for short, and they could show community banks in the United States a thing or two…

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GMAC Launches Deposits-Only ‘Ally Bank’

Roughly six months after GMAC became a bank in order to receive TARP funds, the financial services firm has decided to christen its new banking division as Ally Bank. Ally will be…

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The Post-WaMu Blues: Chase Has Lost ‘That Lovin’ Feeling’

By Freddy J. Nager Founder, Atomic Tango So my longtime bank, Washington Mutual (WaMu), recently got taken over by megabank Chase. 'Twas a sad day for us WaMulians, because, for all its…

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Q&A: An Interview About Branding in the Financial Industry

These are excerpts from an interview given by Jeffry Pilcher, publisher of The Financial Brand. While the interview specifically dealt with credit unions, there are plenty of insights and advice here relevant…

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Differentiation: The Key to Branding

Most financial institutions look, sound and act almost exactly alike, yet of all the components fueling strong brands, differentiation is the most critical.

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This Common Bank & Credit Union Tagline Equates to a “Life” Sentence

"Your partner for life!" "Solutions for life!" "Banking for life!" Many financial institutions use this common two word phrase as part of their tagline. It makes logical sense for a bank or…

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