Creative Showcase: Icicle Tricycle | Mariachi Band | Bad Habits | Rickshaw

Umpqua Bank – Icicle Tricycle

The ever-innovative Umpqua Bank peddles this thing around community events and branch grand openings giving away free ice cream. Free frozen treats with zero emissions.

ING DIRECT (Canada) – Material Girl

ING hired acapella singing sensation Naya Marie to cover Madonna’s “Material Girl.” The one-woman performance is something you have to see. She does the bass line, beatbox, echo, background vocals and lead all by herself. It’s really amazing, and incredibly well produced. The message: It’s a material world out there, so save your money.

( Editor’s Note: This YouTube video is no longer available. )

Banco Sabadell – The Mobile Life

This two-minute video is one of the best representations of what banking in the modern age should look like from the consumer’s perspective — quite literally, it’s all shot from a first-person point of view. The bank is using the video as part of a broader campaign to position itself as a leader in remote- and mobile banking services. They’ve got everything covered: iPhones, iPads, remote deposits, mobile apps, ATM finder.

( Editor’s Note: This YouTube video is no longer available. )

Ubank – Bad Habits

UBank, the online bank from NAB in Australia, ran this ad campaign looking at people’s bad habits, like chewing on pens or doodling in meetings. UBank encourages its customers to replace a bad habit with something that is actually good for them — a savings habit. The campaign includes a 30-second TV spot, print ads and a Facebook contest.

( Editor’s Note: This YouTube video is no longer available. )

Michigan First Credit Union – Mariachi Band

The credit union had a fiesta in its drive-through with a live mariachi band that popped out of the bushes to surprise members.


Merchants Bank – Vermont Matters

This bank has been aligning its brand with all things local in Vermont for quite a few years now. in this installment of the image campaign, Merchants Bank created cool retro posters for its business banking customers. The posters convey a sense of legacy, history, ruggedness and (of course) local Vermont flavor.

Queensland Teachers’ Credit Union – Zest Over 50

The credit union designed a suite of products specifically for its 50+ members. They produced this point-of-sale, brochure and direct mail campaign that put a fairytale spin on approaching retirement. “Zest — The Wonderful World of Fifty Plus” is the theme wrapping a beautiful and unique series of illustrations.

Bank Audi – Go Out There

[Please note: If you live in the U.S., the ad agency that produced this spot, Leo Burnett Beirut, won’t allow you to watch it. Too bad too, because it was kind of a cool ad. Thumbs down to censorship.] This one-minute long TV commercial tracks the life of an average 20-something as navigates his way through the world. The spot’s sound effects and choppy visual style deliberately evokes the 8-bit video games of yesteryear. “The Wheel of Life” soundtrack was written and composed exclusively for Bank Audi.


Nebraska Credit Union League – Better Your Money Rickshaw

The league takes this charming green rickshaw around various community events offering people free rides while handing out koozies, shirts, buttons, brochures and other goodies to promote Nebraska’s credit unions.

ANZ – The Mentalist

One of Australia’s big four banks, ANZ launched this global branch campaign in July 2011. TV spots star The Mentalist’s Patrick Jane. Oddly, the Aussie celebrity uses his character’s American accent, a creative decision that has irritated thousands of Australians. Why hire an Aussie to push an Australian bank if he’s going to speak American?

In character, Jane reads people’s minds, he knows what people are thinking about banks: they want simplicity, they want their bank to be more human, more real, more creative, more innovative. You can see a couple more TV spots in the campaign here and here.


ANZ – In a Perfect World

The campaign that The Mentalist’s Patrick Jane replaced had much more “life” to it. DDB New Zealand created a hilarious series of ads for a bank called ANZ. The message? Life is not perfect, but if you bank with us, it will suck less. It identifies with consumers, attacking their sore spots. There are a couple more spots in the series here: “Access” and “Home.”


Montgomery Bank & Trust – Pineapple Logo

Picking a pineapple for a logo wouldn’t be that unusual… for a bank in Hawaii. But Montgomery is in Georgia. They say they picked a pineapple because it symbolizes hospitality and warm welcome.

BB&T – Soap

Many years ago, BB&T used this premium soap arrangement as a promotional tool with high end customers. These days, it seems a bit ironic that a bank would be giving away soap. Even back then it was probably a little strange.

Standard Chartered – Cultural Differences

Like all international business banks, Standard Chartered struggles to articulate its advantages. One of the familiar themes you’ll see in global banking is cultural sensitivity, as conveyed in this ad by the various forms of headwear seen in different countries. Does it sound a little like the strategy HSBC uses?

Affinity Bank – Bizarre Outhouse Newspaper Ad

This ad is a disjointed wreck. A bank branch that’s an outhouse. Huh? People waiting in line. A dog chewing on a roll of toilet paper. Huh? A sign that says, “Welcome to the 21st century.” Another sign touts money market accounts at 1.4%. The body copy talks about mobile banking services? Huh? And aren’t newspaper ads a thing of the past? Especially when pushing mobile solutions?

Comerica Bank – Business Banking

These full-page magazine ads use large photos of anonymous business stereotypes: the older white male, the younger hipster, the no-nonsense CFO and the Indian techie. The ads look like testimonials, but no names or businesses are listed for any of the actors. Headlines ask questions like “Does your bank move as fast as business?” and “Whose business is your bank trying to grow, yours or theirs?” Other headlines offer more generic rhetoric: “Today’s CFO has to manage more than just money,” and “Understanding your business? Actually, there’s not an ‘app’ for that.”

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