Every time the new Halifax ad comes on the box, I cringe …
Now I’ve blogged about their awful advertising before and how insensitive it seems post-crisis, but this one really gets me down.
Not only is it cheesy, poorly executed and raw, but it actually makes most of the folks I talk to feel sick to see a bank that has cost billions in bailouts advertising as though nothing has changed.
And I’m not alone as the Telegraph decided to run a page last week asking what readers thought about a bank that offered a reward of £5 as long as you depsoti a minium £1,000 per motnth.
This advertising seems a bit rich, the Telegraph claims, when this particular bank has cost each and every family in Britain £5,500 to bailout in the last two years.
Steve Griffiths, director of brand and customer marketing for Halifax, says that their new advertising campaign focuses on "the core message that Halifax rewards its customers for their business and shows that our colleagues are enthusiastic, friendly and approachable".
The Telegraph’s readers say:
“Never mind the advert, I want my £5,500 back. I need it more than they do.”
“Who ever authorised this at Halifax needs stringing up for crimes against society!”
“Look closely and it really does show them up as a bank that cant be trusted.”
“Rather than coming across as "friendly and approachable" they come across as a load of immature bumbling morons.”
they changed the tune to 'sorry seems to be the hardest word' then maybe,
just maybe, there might be some mileage in this. Talk about misreading the
mood of the country."
There's a few amusements in there too, such as (excuse grammar):
"With lyrics like 'you're indestructible'
(HBOS was considered 'too big to fail') and 'you've got the power to
return' (thanks to a government bail-out), was the advertising agency
having a sneaky dig at its clients by any chance?"
“At least it answers one question – what banker do to deserve such large bonuses. They have to work with the inane idiots that feature in the advert.”
“Stop knocking these ads. It gives me valuable exercise reaching for the mute button. Let's have more ads like it and I could achieve fitness and a Zen like calm during commercial breaks.”
Most worryingly for Steve Griffiths, director of brand and customer marketing for Halifax, should be the comments that read:
“I bank with the Halifax and this advert makes me want to leave them. It is that annoying!”
“Absolutely atrocious! Maked me want to change my bank!”
“I am embarrassingly a Halifax customer, but not for long, I couldn't handle people knowing I bank with such morons, & that's not counting the £39, they charge you for an email for a £2.50 failed payment.”
“What the advert doesn't mention is the £12.50 per month which they charge you just for having the account, which of course does include the overdraft charges of £1 per day, the £1.50 per month 'debit card fee', and anything else they can think of to sting you with.”
“If you already bank with Halifax, and don't have a reward account, open one and just transfer £1,000 straight in and back out each month to get your fiver, you don't even have to do it in one lump sum, just £200 backwards and forwards 5 times, still counts, it's easy if you bank online.”
Message to Halifax: start advertising with honesty and sensitivity, and stop advertising as though the great British public are numbskulls believing that nothing has happened.