Westpac raises rates, ire and bananas

  • Marketing
  • December 9, 2009
  • Ben Fahy
Westpac raises rates, ire and bananas

Youtube Video

Westpac Australia recently raised the interest rate on its variable mortgages by nearly twice the level of the Reserve Bank's increase, to the chagrin of many of its ever-poorer customers. So, it decided to release a patronising little animationentitled Cool Bananas to justify the decision.

The animation likens the global financial crisis to storms in Queensland that affected the price of bananas (somewhat surprisingly, it neglected to mention that the global financial crisis was caused by reckless, greedy financiers, rather than an act of God).

The movie was initially created as an internal tool for Westpac staff so they could better explain the financial situation to customers. But it was also sent to its customers via email. Bad move. It's not only been seen as a sad indictment on the knowledge of Westpac's banking staff, but also as a slap in the face for its customers, because its tone is so "child-like and condescending".

A Westpac spokesperson in Australia told The Age: ''We are trying to use a visible example of bananas and how their price was affected by the cyclone in Queensland [in March 2006] to explain a complex issue. Our intentions were honourable and we thought it a useful tool.''

But marketing experts were unimpressed. ''This long-winded parable of Westpac being like a banana seller in a storm on a tropical island somewhat beggars belief,'' said Stephen Pearson, chief executive of advertising agency Lowe Worldwide.


Not surprisingly, Westpac NZ media relations manager Craig Dowling says there's no intention to use the animation in the New Zealand market.

"Since the internal release of the video many requests were received, particularly from staff in branches, to be able to share it with customers," he says. "Because of the customer complaints about the video in the wake of the recent interest rate rise, saying that it is overly simplistic and patronising - certainly not its intent - it was removed from Westpac Group's internet site."

Perhaps Westpac should've used this more accurate power point dispay to explain the crisis to its staff and customers.

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

Fly Buys vamps up its email service

  • Advertising
  • September 26, 2016
  • StopPress Team
Fly Buys vamps up its email service

Fly Buys has made a few innovations to its service lately, having published a new and improved flyer-turned-magazine, and now it’s launched a new email approach developed with 1-1 and JustOne.

Read more
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About

StopPress provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise

Contact Vernene Medcalf at +64 21 628 200 to advertise in StopPress.

View Media Kit