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Article Image: Canadian Credit Union Goes Fully Guerilla

Canadian Credit Union Goes Fully Guerilla

FirstOntario Credit Union recently launched a classic guerilla marketing campaign to reinforce a message of safety and strength. FirstOntario placed everyday items — such as bikes, park benches, fire hydrants and bubble wrap — in unexpected ways around key communities to drive home the message that the credit union’s short-term investments are “Extra safe.” “Backup […]

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Article Image: How To Look Up Your Financial Trademark in 10 Easy Steps

How To Look Up Your Financial Trademark in 10 Easy Steps

There are thousands of financial institutions across North America who leave some of their most valuable assets virtually unprotected. We’re talking about their trademarks — things like names, logos, slogans, products, etc. Here’s a step-by-step process for searching the United States Patent & Trademark Office’s online trademark database to see if a name is federally […]

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Article Image: A Gen-Y Firm for Credit Unions is ‘On Your Way’

A Gen-Y Firm for Credit Unions is ‘On Your Way’

“In most cases ‘On Your Way’ will pay for itself right away.” — On Your Way website The credit union industry can add one more firm to the list of companies specializing in Gen-Y marketing solutions. TBA Marketing is joining the ranks of vendors like PSCU Financial Services and Currency Marketing who are competing in […]

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Article Image: Updated Bank Names For 2009

Updated Bank Names For 2009

About this time last year, I published a list of updated bank slogans for 2008. This year, I’m moving up to the big time and renaming banks altogether. Here’s a partial list of new bank names we need to see:   Old Name                   New Name NetBank     […]

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Article Image: Merged Bank Uses Guerilla Tactics to Launch New Brand

Merged Bank Uses Guerilla Tactics to Launch New Brand

“What we tried to do is replicate the surprise and delight tactics that happen within each TD Bank store.” — Greg Siano, EVP/Tierney Communications After a few naming hiccups earlier in the marriage, TD Banknorth and Commerce Bank have just christened their first major branding campaign under the name TD Bank. The campaign is built […]

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Article Image: Join The Participatory Marketing Network

Join The Participatory Marketing Network

A new marketing organization has been formed that you should take a look at it. It’s called the Participatory Marketing Network. According to its web site: Over the last 50 years, we have seen marketing evolve from “Push Marketing” to the “Permission Marketing” concepts popularized by Seth Godin. More recently,  industry experts have proclaimed the […]

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Article Image: Rewards Programs' Bad Rap

Rewards Programs' Bad Rap

I have a request: Would the person who first called a rewards programs a “loyalty” program please raise your hand? Thank you. Now could you come a little closer…..so I can whack you upside the head for causing so much unneeded debate and confusion. There is no shortage of academic research addressing the question of […]

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Article Image: How One Bank Spun Its TARP Money

How One Bank Spun Its TARP Money

“We are pleased that we have been selected to participate in this voluntary program.” — D. Michael Jones President and CEO Banner Corporation Recently, Banner Bank in the Pacific Northwest got an infusion of capital through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The U.S. Treasury bought $124 million of Banner’s stock through the government’s Capital […]

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Article Image: Meltdown Marketing: 3 Things Credit Unions Must Do

Meltdown Marketing: 3 Things Credit Unions Must Do

No matter how the financial rescue plan unfolds, the financial industry as a whole will not go back to the way it was. This challenging economic climate provides a historic opportunity for the credit union industry to step out from the shadow of banks and take a prominent place in Americans’ financial futures. With this […]

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Article Image: Banks Are In The Bush League

Banks Are In The Bush League

Who’s got a higher confidence rating, banks or George Bush? The good news for banks is that the answer is banks. The bad news for banks is that it’s close. According to the November Rasmussen poll, 35% of the people polled at least somewhat approve of the way the President has handled his job. That’s […]

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Article Image: Financial Services Ad Spending Drops 10% in 2008

Financial Services Ad Spending Drops 10% in 2008

Nielsen just released its ad spending data comparing the first three quarters of 2008 to 2007. In the financial industry, advertisers have already made significant cuts, with presumably more to come in 2009. Company Ad Spending (in millions) % 2007 2008 Experian $273 $297 8.70% Visa $274 $277 0.95% Bank of America $383 $268 -29.95% […]

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Article Image: No Traditional Tellers in This New Branch

No Traditional Tellers in This New Branch

Dort FCU’s latest branch is characterized by its warm woods and rich hues, complemented by nice lighting and a healthy application of retail graphics. The open floor plan and spacious ceiling create a pleasant, inviting feeling. Four video tellers handle all the branch’s cash transactions. (For more on video tellers, see this article from The […]

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Article Image: First Atlantic Branches Feature Video Tellers, Teller “pods”

First Atlantic Branches Feature Video Tellers, Teller “pods”

John Culp, CEO of First Atlantic Credit Union, complained that his financial institution suffered from “a physical image that was like that of a classic bank branch, with teller lines and big walls separating us from the customers.” Enter Kenneth Gruskin, president of Gruskin Group, an architectural firm, who has reworked five of First Atlantic’s […]

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Article Image: Beneficial Bank’s Brand Campaign is “Starting Now”

Beneficial Bank’s Brand Campaign is “Starting Now”

Beneficial Bank in Philadelphia, launched an upbeat branding campaign following the election. The campaign carries the theme “Starting Now.” The campaign includes two TV spots, new brochures, branch posters, print and outdoor ads. Beneficial has $3.5 billion in assets, 72 branches in the Philadelphia region and 250 employees. “Fiscal Sanity” A general spot introducing the […]

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Article Image: Countybank Cooking Up Biscuits for Breakfast

Countybank Cooking Up Biscuits for Breakfast

It looks like a fresh-baked biscuit. But it’s really a direct mail piece (pictured above) sent out by Countybank down in South Carolina. (You can see the inside of the mailer below.) This clever campaign, targeting businesses in the bank’s area, offers new business customers a free biscuit breakfast for up to 13 people — […]

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Article Image: BofA transit ads: NYers complain in them, about them

BofA transit ads: NYers complain in them, about them

Bank of America recently introduced a new offer to New Yorkers. For every $100 they spend on public transit with their BofA bank cards, Bank of America will pay them $10. Sounds like a great deal, right — something New Yorkers would be thankful for? After all, the deal comes without any real strings attached. […]

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Article Image: Christmas Bonus! ATM to Spew $50s Instead of $20s

Christmas Bonus! ATM to Spew $50s Instead of $20s

This holiday season, Industrial Credit Union in Bellingham, WA is going to randomly swap 100 $20 bills in one of its ATMs with $50 bills. The promo starts December 1. According to Matt Vance, the credit union’s marketing chief, the credit union is sending a DM piece about the promo to 5,100 households within a […]

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Article Image: Top 20 Songs On Wall Street For 2008

Top 20 Songs On Wall Street For 2008

Swillboard pre-announced its top 20 songs on Wall Street for 2008. I got a sneak preview, so here they are: 20. Grateful Dead, “Loser” 19. Aerosmith, “Dream On” 18. Allman Brothers Band, “Whipping Post” 17. Beatles, “Help!” 16. Animals, “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place” 15. Bee Gees, “Stayin’ Alive” 14. Patsy Cline, “I […]

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Article Image: The Do’s and Don’ts of CU Acronyms

The Do’s and Don’ts of CU Acronyms

Many credit unions refer to themselves internally in acronym form. Using acronyms is common industry shorthand. Everyone does in our industry, right? And when credit unions first start looking at a name change, one option is always first to make it on the table: Simply switch to an acronym. Easy. Take a name with six […]

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Article Image: Twitter's Facebook Smackdown

Twitter's Facebook Smackdown

If I HAD A WEB 2.0 COMPANY… …that had more than its share of technology issues… …and no clue about what business model would enable it to actually generate revenue… …and some firm came along offering me $500 million in stock for my company… I WOULD SELL IT BEFORE THE ACQUIRER CAME TO ITS SENSES. […]

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Article Image: What Gen X, Gen Y Think About Their Financial Situation

What Gen X, Gen Y Think About Their Financial Situation

To better understand Gen X and Gen Y’s current and future financial situation, the American Savings Education Council and AARP commissioned a survey with members of these two generations. The online survey of 1,752 Americans ages 19-39 was conducted back in January 2008. This research found that: Many young adults have yet to align their […]

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Article Image: Westpac Rolls Out Free Checking with “Truth Pod”

Westpac Rolls Out Free Checking with “Truth Pod”

Westpac Bank in Australia took a plain-looking red booth, something it calls the Truth Pod, around to various locations across Sydney. People who ventured into the unbranded booth were asked what annoyed them about banks. Apparently, the answer was fees. Fees, fees, fees. Westpac filmed the whole process and made a commercial out of it. […]

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Article Image: Robotic Safety Deposit Boxes

Robotic Safety Deposit Boxes

Has anyone actually seen this in action? It seems pretty cool. You access a secluded security room using an access card, PIN code or biometrics. Then once inside, you use your card or personal key to have your safety deposit box retrieved robotically. Gunnebo, one of the companies manufacturing robotic safety deposit boxes, suggests you […]

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Article Image: Credit Union Members Vote on Logo Makeover

Credit Union Members Vote on Logo Makeover

“I’ll be honest, there were initial apprehensions. But this soon gave way to excitement.” — Cas Scott, Companion CU Marketing Manager To support a new brand theme, “We’re Listening,” the members of Companion Credit Union, based in Australia, were invited to vote and pick the new logo for their organization. Voting was open the entire […]

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Article Image: Credit unions glow in media spotlight (Part IV)

Credit unions glow in media spotlight (Part IV)

Back in September, as the economy began disintegrating, an unusual trend began to emerge. The media — who had been ignoring credit unions for decades — all of a sudden started talking about these member-owned financial cooperatives that had managed to avoid the economic catastrophe. Hundreds of articles later, it doesn’t appear that the trend […]

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Article Image: SunTrust: “Live Solid. Bank Solid.”

SunTrust: “Live Solid. Bank Solid.”

Earlier this week, SunTrust Bank unveiled a new brand tagline and marketing campaign focused on savings. The “Live Solid, Bank Solid” campaign speaks to what the bank describes as “a new era of thrift, security and financial responsibility.” The new campaign is rooted in the notion that consumers are moving away from conspicuous consumption towards […]

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Article Image: This Bank’s Brand Ads Are Out of Control

This Bank’s Brand Ads Are Out of Control

These brand ads for Continental Bank in Wisconsin encourage people to get a firm grip on their financial situations. Each ad relies on a carefully-crafted custom photo where someone is wrestling — literally — with some aspect of their financial life: a wallet, purse or checkbook. The ads are ultra-simple in their message, supported by […]

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Article Image: Texas-Sized Trademark Trouble Brewing Over Name

Texas-Sized Trademark Trouble Brewing Over Name

Last week, The Financial Brand reported that Arp State Bank in East Texas was changing its name to American State Bank. The article noted a number of other financial institutions who already use American State Bank as their name, including ones in Iowa, South Dakota and North Dakota. But there’s already one in Texas too. […]

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Article Image: Don’t Throw the TARP on Credit Unions

Don’t Throw the TARP on Credit Unions

For many years, credit unions have lobbied hard to make sure they get fair and equal treatment from the U.S. Government. But begging the Treasury for TARP money is not a good idea. CUNA, NAFCU and Fryzel at the NCUA have all joined together recently with their hands out as they ask for taxpayer relief. […]

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