Using People Power

By Rubenstein, Jim | Independent Banker, May 1998 | Go to article overview

Using People Power


Rubenstein, Jim, Independent Banker


Community banks adopt marketing campaigns with the human touch

The power of human connections, coupled with "makethe-customer-feel-good" messages, can work advertising wonders.

Two community banks in rural Kansas and Colorado know firsthand that's the case. Olathe State Bank in Olathe, Colo., and First National Bank and Trust Co. of Phillipsburg, Kan., revamped their advertising messages to emphasize a more personal touch. By featuring hometown events and faces in their ads, both banks came away winners by attracting new business. And they even reduced expenses in the process.

Olathe State Bank, a bank with $20 million in assets, turned away from productheavy or service-heavy advertising to radio ads conveying a more "emotion-laden" theme, explains President and CEO Les Mergelman. The new approach produced "a much better image for us and is bringing in accounts that we would not have received without it," he says.

Last year, First National Bank and Trust, a $121 million-asset bank, adopted a new "We care. We share your dreams" slogan. The bank's ads feature the familiar hometown faces of employees, customers and local residents. "Our advertising was too heavy on selling services, and we learned a lot about how we need to identify with our customers' dreams and aspirations," explains Chairman and CEO Charles I. (Cy) Moyer.

First National Bank and Trust's advertising approach was shaped by a Colorado ad agency, Chandler Marketing Co. of Glenwood Springs, which also assisted Olathe State Bank's marketing efforts.

Michael Chandler, the agency's owner, tells community banks to drop the "we're first, we're biggest" slogan and develop an approach that "emotionally bonds" customers to them.

Chandler maintains that community banks, to survive big bank or super-regional competition, must put more emphasis on market "positioning" with a more personal, human touch.

"For community banks to stand out from our competition, they must focus and draw on their customers' strongest human trait-their emotions," Chandler advises.

A year ago, to launch a new radio advertising campaign, Olathe State Bank trimmed back many of its mounting civic donations. The bank had been spending $30,000 a year in civic donations, discovering that that much largesse was eating too far into the bottom line. Instead, the bank devoted its marketing budget to the new advertising campaign, which promotes a wide array of hometown events and includes a strong message about the bank's longstanding support of community service.

Like Olathe State Bank, First National Bank and Trust invested in advertising that puts a strong emphasis on the customers. "We used to talk in our advertising about how wonderful we are, but now we've turned it around," notes Kelly Vanderplas, First National Bank's marketing representative. "We tell our customers how important they are."

First National Bank and Trust's ads highlight lots of special community events, from the annual "Riverless Festival," to a spotlight on Health Care Month and Hospice Week to a plug for an arts and crafts fair Labor Day celebration. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Using People Power
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.