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Credit Union Ads — From Bad to Worse

I’m convinced that every so often bank and credit union marketers believe they’ve run out of product offers or other sales messages yet have marketing dollars that must be spent.

The end result is the occasional newspaper ad or billboard that causes me to shake my head and wonder “what were they thinking?”

Here’s a case in point.  This newspaper ad appeared in last Sunday’s issue of The Sacramento Bee.

The local credit union spent valuable marketing dollars stating the obvious – telling newspaper readers that “Now everyone can join Golden 1!

While there are, undoubtedly, a few Rip Van Winkles living in the Sacramento area who remain unaware that credit union membership is open to anyone living or working in the area, you may not want these folks as members.  Apparently they are living in a different world.

The saving grace of this particular ad is the mention of FREE Checking.

So, why not make FREE Checking part of the bold headline?

“FREE Checking for EVERYONE”

In the sales copy you can explain that anyone living or working in the area can join the credit union.

Less than 24 hours had passed before I encountered a worse ad – this one on a billboard promoting a Northern California bank with branches in the Sacramento area.

From my perspective this ad is totally void of a meaningful message.  I’m still shaking my head over this wasted billboard.

In my wildest dreams I can’t imagine approving this marketing expenditure.

Surely, someone working at Tri Counties Bank could have come up with an appealing offer for this billboard.

After thinking about the four words in the upper right corner of the billboard it occurred to me that perhaps it is a coded message from the bank’s marketing team.  I see it as a call for help.  They remain locked in some meeting room seeking viable marketing offers for use in future newspaper ads and on future billboards.

What other explanation makes sense?

Tagsbankbillboardcredit unionfree checkingmarketersmarketing dollarsnewspaper adNorthern California Bankproduct offersRip Van WinklesSacramento areasales messagesThe Sacramento BeeTri Counties Bank

  • KennethJune 15, 2012

    I had several friends who worked for Golden1, I used to work for Schools FCU, but a few years ago Golden1 terminated their entire internal Marketing Department and decided to outsource everything (I'm not sure who). Once they did that things really changed.