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Honesty? Strewth, I’d rather steal from an Australian …

I got a nudge today from NAB.

No, it’s not a disease.

It’s NAB, National Australia Bank, who recently pulled the pants down on their competitors by telling them they were all dodgy in a national advertising campaign framed around the theme: “it’s over between us ”.

The aim was to set NAB apart from the pack of banks, and it worked.

According to the Australian newspaper, the campaign has led to NAB seeing a 50% boost in credit card applications, a 20% increase in mortgage applications, a 35% increase in interest from customers of other banks in moving over to NAB, and a 1% increase in NAB's share of the mortgage business.

Pretty impressive stuff and how do you follow that?

With something not quite as buzzy, but still interesting.

Let’s test honesty.

On Sunday, the bank is launching a whole set of viral social stuff themed around: “An Honesty Experiment”, looking at how honest are Australians.

It comes with some cute videos and my favourite is the third in a series, where some tosser Bruce drops cash all over the pavement …

And all the Sheila’s and Bruce’s give it back to him!

It’s all on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter and is coupled with research that reckons the average Aussie tells less than three lies a week.

That’s a great message, and indicates that most Aussies are honest

Obviously, not the ones who play cricket, but that’s another story.

So then it got me thinking about honesty elsewhere, and I found an interesting survey  from Synovate, who set out to test the honesty of 2,640 survey panellists in the US, Germany and Thailand, and found that US respondents are more likely to provide truthful answers than Germans and Thais.

Hmmm … a Basil Fawlty moment almost loomed, but I shall refrain.

Now us Brits are obviously totally above board.

We just bribe our police to give us info about the Queen, the Prime Minister and anyone else we need to know about.

On a less serious note, a recent survey of 15,000 Brits found that over two-thirds of people admit that they have steal stationery from work, copy CDs for friends, or kept quiet when undercharged in shops.

Apparently, we are far more honest when there is someone watching, which includes CCTV cameras.  Maybe that’s why we have 1 CCTV camera for every 32 people as you cannot trust any of us!

So here’s the rub.

An Englishman, Thai, German, American and Aussie walk into a bar. 

The Aussie pays.


About Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, TheFinanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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