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by Derek Loosvelt | August 19, 2010


UBS—which took a severe beating during the financial crisis, losing billions of dollars and a lot of credibility thanks to a highly-publicized lawsuit, but which has recently put up some solid financial figures—today unveiled a new advertising campaign, attempting to convey to current and prospective clients that the firm is not planning on taking a break from work anytime soon.

More specifically, according to UBS, the bank's "We will not rest" campaign slogan is meant to signify that the bank "refuses to rest until we are the UBS that [clients] can trust completely." Furthermore, according to a memo announcing the campaign, "The confidence we portray should help our client advisors reinforce existing relationships and secure new ones."

And so, in honor of the new campaign, below are the worst and best advertising slogans in modern banking history. Enjoy.

The 5 Worst Banking Slogans

5. "Think what we can do for you." (Bank of America's poor attempt at ripping off JFK that, I think, is missing a preposition, at the very least.)

4. "Live richly." (Citi should've taken some of advice from Hemingway before rolling this one out: use adverbs sparingly.)

3. "You can count on us." (I believe this is what they call, in the advertising business, or any business, irony: IndyMac famously went bankrupt while this slogan was still in use.)

2. "The strength to be there." (If not for the U.S. government and taxpayers, AIG* almost wasn't.)

1. "Whoo hoo!" (Washington Mutual, aka WaMu, threw out this ridiculous Homer Simpson-esque campaign not long after it unveiled massive losses and layoffs ... D'oh!)

The 5 Best Banking Slogans

5. "The world's local bank." (It's unclear what HSBC wants us to take away from this, but it sure is short and catchy.)

4. "Advice you can bank on." (A solid use of the double entendre from Dresdner Bank.)

3. "The Citi never sleeps." (Although the slogan doesn't quite get across what Citicorp/Citigroup wanted it to—that the bank "has an around the globe and around the clock commitment to its clients"—it smartly nodded to the ubiquitous phrase describing the world's financial capital, which, of course, is the city in which Citi is based.)

2. "When E.F. Hutton talks, people listen." (People might not have listened, but they sure did love to watch the firm's commercials, which put this campaign out of the park.)

1. "We make money the old-fashioned way. We earn it." (Smith Barney's iconic advertising campaign using the incomparable Paper Chase-r John Houseman.)

*True, AIG is not technically a bank, but this one was just too good to exclude.


Filed Under: Finance
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