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CU System
Banks take cue from CUs try warm and fuzzy ads
NEW YORK (6/12/09)--Banks may be taking a page out of credit unions' marketing books, using warm and fuzzy advertising to convey more optimism in an attempt to move on from the financial debacle of the past year. Credit unions had success the past year in their marketing and advertising efforts. They drew national media attention for their messages that they aren't part of the problem but are part of the solutions, that they are safe and sound, and that they are still lending when others aren't. Now, some banks, especially community banks, are starting to convey those same messages And those with ties to the cause of the recession are busy rebranding and airing advertisements that provide a more optimistic, brighter future, according to The New York Times (June 9). Some banks are trying to get the consumers to forget who they were. Case in point: GMAC Bank, long tied to the now-bankrupt General Motors, is now billing itself as the consumer's friend--"Ally Bank, a better kind of bank." AIU, "a unique franchise," is owned by American International Group (A.I.G.). Redneck Bank ("where banking's funner") is the name for Bank of the Wichitas online presence. Bank of America has quit using the Countrywide name because it was a lightning rod for the excesses of subprime lending, said the article. And it recently introduced ads such as "Home has a new address" and "Keep Moving Forward," which features doors opening. Citigroup and other industry giants are reviewing their public image and trying to keep a low profile, said the Times. Citi started airing public service ads, called "The Citi View." The ads provide tips on saving money.


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