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06/04/2009

Too Many Checking Account Choices?

The other day I was headed to my favorite gas station where gas is about 15 cents cheaper per gallon.  It’s a familiar brand name but the gas is cheaper as the company does not spend money on TV commercials.  The station is located at a busy intersection that includes three fast food joints — a McDonald’s,…

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06/03/2009

Too Much Clutter in the Branch?

In reality, banks are in the retail business — competing with other retailers for a share of consumers’ disposable income.  As such, an argument can be made that a bank branch should have the look and feel of a retail store. I was reminded of this last evening while on my bi-weekly visit to our…

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06/03/2009

Polish Your Halo

Like every industry and profession, advertising has its jargon. Jargon, as Webster says, is “The specialized language of a trade, profession, or similar group.” At times, the silence I hear from a client means I’ve used jargon the person doesn’t understand. One of the newest phrases in advertising that qualifies as jargon is “halo copy”…

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06/02/2009

Should Bank Advertising Make You Laugh?

For as long as I’ve been in bank marketing — and I go back to 1972 — it has been a truism that you don’t use humor in your marketing campaigns.  Oh sure, a few banks have tried it but it rarely, if ever, succeeds.  How do I know this?  First, I’m not aware of…

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06/02/2009

When Bad Advertising Happens

Early in the morning of Memorial Day, a man walked into a convenience store in Lincoln, Nebraska, with an empty Bud Light 12-pack box over his head. He robbed the store. His take…cigarettes. He didn’t ask for cash. Guess he thought the statewide smoking ban that took effect days later would make cigarettes illegal. No,…

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06/01/2009

Savings rate soars to 5.7%. What’s that mean?

For years consumers expressed a desire to save more. And banks delivered: Flexible CDs, Checking accounts tied to savings accounts, “Keep the change,” and other easy saver products. Problem was people still didn’t save much. Wanted to… but didn’t. It’s no surprise the recession finally got people moving. Watching your 401k dwindle (hey, I thought…

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06/01/2009

Baubles, Bangles and Advertising

Are you a packrat? I am. I think it’s genetic. My mom certainly was a saver and accumulator. That was clear a couple of years ago when she moved to a nursing home after a series of strokes. It was left to my brother and I to clean out over 45 years of “stuff” in…

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