First Bank and Trust
During post-Katrina New Orleans, all banks were faced with the mass exodus of customers, thousands of foreclosures, and bankrupt businesses. First Bank and Trust, serving the Greater New Orleans and Gulf Coast region was no exception to the struggles of the community.
RUSSO helped leverage the bank’s position as the “Official Bank of the New Orleans Saints,” while positioning them as a trusted business partner. From this, “First Bank Fred” was born.
Fred helped to link their relationship with the Saints, as well as inform potential and existing clients of their business model. In addition, RUSSO developed a comprehensive brand strategy to incorporate the bank’s seven different entities under the First Trust banner. Once accomplished, the focus transitioned through the brand plan and evolved towards the products of the bank – developing a campaign to position the bank in the hearts and minds of the community. Message strategy included the viral elements of a dedicated website and street promotions.
Two major awareness campaigns – “What Next?” and “Testimonial” – were rolled out involving print, radio and television components with a strong interactive tie-in. Total brand control of all First Bank and Trust materials including in-store displays, product brochures monthly statement stuffers, paper system and sales letters.
This campaign, along with consistent brand messaging across a diverse range of collateral pieces throughout the year, helped establish First Bank and Trust as a trusted partner in the business economy and resulted in end of year growth of 22.6 percent – an increase of $109 million.