"Nothing Works like Money in the Bank." (Includes Related Article on Variables Closely Associated with Favorable Consumer Attitudes toward Banking industry)(American Bankers Association Consumer Survey Results)

Article excerpt

Research is useless unless you do something about it. The ABA research presented in this special supplement plainly calls for action.

The ABA's new advertising campaign "Nothing works like money in the bank" has arrived at a very good time. Millions of advertising dollars go to brush up tarnished images, stem market erosion, and position industries in a favorable light with consumers and opinion leaders. Architects, pharmacists, and the dairy industry have run campaigns on behalf of their professions. I do not believe all those industries would spend those millions if they didn't think it worked.

We don't plan to paint a white mustache on every banker in America, but we do want to see many bankers involved. Advertising works. I've seen it work in politics and in banking.

Why is this the right time for an industry ad campaign for banking? Banks have never been more profitable, which means we can afford a campaign. And we've never had more reason to take our message to the American public, as this research plainly tells us.

The banking industry hasn't made a case for itself in nearly two decades, since the ABA "Full Service Banking" campaign ended. It's time to put this industry's message back in front of the consumer. To help do that, the ABA invested $1 million to create TV, print, and radio ads--good advertising with a solid message that banks provide value.

One of the two TV spots aired briefly on CNN in September, and has already been recognized by AdWeek magazine. But now it's up to banks.

How can you participate? I propose that every bank contribute $5 per $1 million in deposits to help fund a national running of the ABA ad campaign. With the participation of every bank in the country, we could reverse the negative feelings about banks.

Let's be very clear about one thing: The message of this research is obvious. We need action. To do nothing in the face of such compelling evidence is to admit defeat before we begin.

I hope you'll join me in getting behind this campaign. For more information about the ABA ads, call George Cleland, ABA director, issues communications, at (202) 663-5454.

Research is knowledge. Let's put this knowledge to work for the betterment of our industry--before it's too late.

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