Financial Work That’s Bankable

Financial marketing takes a lot of different forms, but we’ve found that a few themes keep cropping up. Things like trustworthiness, customer service, convenience, and access to a range of options. They’re things everyone needs, but seldom think about on a daily basis. Most of all, people just want to know their banking and investment partners will be there for them, that they can rely on the services they provide, and that their money is in good hands.

So when we’re building brands for financial clients, we look for the differences—big and small—that set the good apart from the great, and we seek to communicate those difference to their customers—and why they matter.


Farmers State Bank

Farmers State Bank is a locally-owned institution with branches the length of the Bitterroot Valley in western Montana. Many of Farmers State Bank’s customers live here because they’re drawn to the valley’s beauty and connection to the natural world. The bank is committed to supporting its community, to the degree that it gives employees time off from work to participate in non-profit work in the valley. It’s one of many reasons Farmers competes successfully against nationwide banks; its customers know the people at their bank because they see them in the community every day.

“Fire” TV Spot
One risk of living in a forested Montana valley is the ever-present threat of forest fires. When a dangerously dry summer led to devastating fires in the region, Farmers responded with support for fire crews and families affected by the fire. They also wanted to add a message of solidarity and hope. We helped them create a TV spot that had nothing to sell and no product to tout. The bank and the people of the valley had survived similar trials in their 100-year history; the spot reinforced that this time would be no different.


“Community Print” Campaign
Farmers State Bank was founded by one of the town fathers of Victor, in the heart of the Bitterroot Valley. The early leaders of the bank were influential in bringing electricity and telephone service to the valley. The bank grew as the valley grew. We sought to communicate that history and commitment to an influx of newcomers. The solution was the Community Commitment campaign. We’d found that an amazing number of the bank’s employees suffered from a rare affliction—helping others. They’re baseball and track coaches, scout leaders, soccer referees, hospital board members, EMTs, firefighters, charity organizers—all volunteers giving their time to the community. We created a series of ads featuring these individuals and their volunteer roles, highlighting the interconnectedness of everyone living in the valley.



“E-Bank” Billboard/Print Campaign

People love e-banking because it’s convenient and lets you do your banking anywhere, any time. Our “E-bank” campaign points this out with a bit of wry humor.

FSB Arrested E-bank Billboard

FSB Arrested E-bank Billboard


Valley Bank of Kalispell

As an independent and locally owned bank, the best advice we could give Valley Bank of Kalispell was to go their own way. The brand we developed for Valley Bank reflected its values, institutional mission and “real Montana” character. It was our job to hone their image as a top-quality financial institution, despite being much smaller than its competitors. Drawing on the distinct look of the bank’s gorgeous western-inspired lobby, we crafted a brand which reflected its independent and informal culture. From there, we developed campaigns that took the potentially-stodgy world of banking in new and interesting directions.

Home-equity loans…and, you’re already bored.

A constant challenge in financial marketing is making it more than a numbers game. People want the best interest rates and lending terms they can get—but they want them to actually buy stuff. The radio spots in our “Modern Problems” lending campaign rekindled interest by talking about the real human motivations and emotions behind the loans people want. Click on “Men and Women,” “Bathroom,” and “Carpal Tunnel” above to see what we mean.

“Right on the Money” Branding Campaign
Our early branding efforts for Valley Bank focused on reinforcing the honesty and integrity embodied in the traditions of frontier Montana. Taking cues from the bank’s old-fashioned lobby design (with real bars on the teller windows), we developed print ads, outdoor boards and lobby posters which spoke to a certain vein of trust, self-reliance, and guns. Lots and lots of guns.

Valley Bank

Valley Bank

D.A. Davidson

Founded in 1935, D.A. Davidson & Co. is one of Montana’s oldest and most respected financial institutions. An investment firm for individuals, families and businesses, Davidson provides a range of services to help them set, plan, and reach their financial goals.

Mountain West Bank

In building a brand for a Montana-owned bank, letting your customers know you’re local shouldn’t take a back seat to explaining your products and benefits. For Mountain West Bank, serving the communities of western Montana means working hard to provide competitive financial products while offering hometown service you’d expect from friends and neighbors. In these spots created for Mountain West Bank, we take care to communicate the product and the brand.

“Peak Free Checking” TV Spot

“Front Range Free Checking” TV Spot


American Federal Savings Bank

We served as agency of record for American Federal Savings Bank for a number of years. During that time, we helped the bank and its five branches transition through a name change and comprehensive new identity; we also helped them with the launch of their new $7 million-dollar main branch. The bank experienced significant growth and outstanding increases in deposits over this time.

American Federal Savings Bank had the loyalty and trust of its customers, and our work helped brand the bank as solid, responsive and personal. But the bank’s core customers were 60+. While seniors tend to have greater assets, they weren’t providing American Federal enough new loans and other products. What’s more, the bank didn’t have a fresh wave of younger customers to replace them. The challenge was to acquire new customers age 35 to 65. Our solution focused on active couples enjoying quality of life. The campaign’s unexpected twist drew attention to the importance of a youthful attitude, and helped promote a fresh brand image: youthful energy built on a solid foundation.

“Ride” TV Spot