Payments

Square and Navy Credit Union win September TV advertising

  • Banks and credit card companies spend millions of dollars a month on commercial spots.
  • Two smaller financial institutions stood out from the rest at the big kids table.
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Square and Navy Credit Union win September TV advertising
Television commercials will always have a special place in our hearts. From the Super Bowl to media awards ceremonies like the Oscars and Emmy’s, companies fight to get their ads in front of their target audience, paying a pretty penny along the way. Banks and credit card companies are no different, spending millions of dollars a month on commercial spots. In the month of September, 33 bank and card brands spent $133.5 million on 132 spots that ran over 30 thousand times. Some of the biggest spenders included JP Morgan, Capital One, and Citi. The theory goes that the more money you throw at advertising, the more people see your product and buy it. So it would make sense that those who spent the most money or had the most ads got the most impressions, while outliers should be noted. Here is the list of September's top 10 impressions for banks and credit card companies, gathered by Fabric Media: banks___credit_cards_on_tv_in_september_impressions Square and Navy Credit Union stand out in the list of incumbents as small players sitting at the big kids table. Smaller players like Square and Navy Credit Union need to come up with better strategies in order to gain impressions with competitors that can spend tens of millions of dollars a month on ad spending and not blink about it. Square found itself in the top 10 with more impressions than MasterCard while spending a fifth of the cash. Square's strategy seems to have been to use the debate to get the most bang for its buck. Around 40% of placements were during primetime, and most ads ran on Fox News, CNN, and Spike. "It's definitely unusual for Square to be in the top 10 of impressions; they don't appear on the leader board at all other than in September," said Jon Capetta, entertainment specialist for Fabric Media. "In fact, they've only spent about $10.5 million all year." Square had two ads, each one pitching its new credit card reader, standard fee structure, and faster deposits.
Navy Credit Union was also low in terms of relative spending and had only a total of 47 ad airings during the month. Its marketing campaign was directed at turning solders into real people who can access specialized financial services by using the credit union.
The strategy was similar to Square, optioning to have ads during NFL games. Navy Credit Union may be a niche market provider, but it's been gaining in impressions over the past few months.
"This is their first time Navy Credit Union was in the top 10 of impressions through the summer, but they have been increasing their ranks steadily so will be interesting to watch for next month for sure," said Capetta.
Wells Fargo planned to air an ad on special benefits when opening up an account with them, but decided to pull it in the end.

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