Adrenaline’s Chief Brand Officer Pens Byline on Brand Fundamentals in The Financial Brand

Juliet D’Ambrosio explores brand values as a way forward amid banking turbulence in the Financial Brand’s “How Branding Pays Off in the Bottom Line and in Tough Times” 

Wednesday, July 12, 2023 – Recent results from two major reputation rankings reaffirm just how essential strong branding is in financial services, according to a new byline in the Financial Brand by Juliet D’Ambrosio, Adrenaline’s Chief Brand Officer. “What we appreciated most about RepTrak’s report is the clear recognition of how branding contributes to reputation,” she says. “This, in turn, impacts the likelihood of whether people will buy products from a company, recommend it to others or want to work there.”  

This new data underscores Adrenaline’s findings in a survey of hundreds of senior banking leaders, both online and in person, at the Financial Brand Forum. Although three out of four leaders say that their brand critically impacts their business value, 66% of them have not rebranded their bank or credit union since before COVID. “Many financial institutions have let branding fall by the wayside for too long,” says Juliet D’Ambrosio in the article. “In doing so, they are forgoing powerful benefits in connecting with consumers and boosting the bottom line.”  

Even if most banks and credit unions understand the importance of branding, they may not know that the way a brand shows up in the world speaks to their lived values and can provide a way forward during turbulent times.”

The pandemic represented a threshold moment for all brands, but particularly those in financial services. “During the lockdowns, the financial industry was a true champion, providing support that kept customers and communities going,” says Juliet D’Ambrosio. Now, people’s priorities and expectations have shifted. “Across the board, COVID changed how consumers think about the way they want to buy from and relate to companies,” she says. “Now more than ever, consumers need to feel connected to a company’s mission and the way it does business.”  

Perhaps more than the pandemic, the recent regional banking failures have put all banks and credit unions under a microscope, something not experienced to this degree since the 2008 financial crisis. “In moments like these, brand matters more than ever,” says Juliet D’Ambrosio. “Whether it’s trust and transparency or safety and security, the banks that have spent time building their brands to be relevant and relatable are best positioned to articulate their values at the moments that really count.”   

While it’s may be true that the banking industry doesn’t like change, the right brand foundation will help financial institutions navigate the challenges in front of them.  

Brand best practices during tough times include:  

  • Don’t assume consumers have moved on from the recent banking turbulence. Execute on your communications plan.  
  • Silence is not a strategy. The strategy for tough times is to communicate clearly, communicate often and communicate with breadth and depth. 
  • A brand’s purpose is a platform to create a very clear path forward for navigating issues that are external to the organization, like shifting market conditions. 

Adrenaline thinks about band in terms of DNA – it’s enduring essence shapes who a brand is. “Much of the work behind branding and brand strategy is uncovering that core truth, elevating it, and telling the story behind it,” says Juliet D’Ambrosio. It’s critical to ensure brand storytelling matches the needs of the people the brand wants to influence. “If a financial institution hasn’t looked at the story their brand is telling to the marketplace, then it is foregoing opportunities for connection and growth.”  

For all of Juliet’s insights, read the full article “How Branding Pays Off in the Bottom Line and in Tough Times” in the Financial Brand. The Financial Brand is a digital publication focused on brand, marketing and strategy in financial services. Serving high-level leaders, the trade features ideas, insights and information for banks and credit unions building their brands. 

To learn more about brand and marketing strategies for your bank or credit union, or to speak with one of Adrenaline’s brand experience experts, contact us today. Be sure to also stay tuned in to Believe in Banking as it highlights industry news and views for banking leaders. 

Adrenaline is an end-to-end brand experience company serving the financial industry. We move brands and businesses ahead by delivering on every aspect of their experience across digital and physical channels, from strategy through implementation. We create brands people love and engage audiences with story-led design and insights-driven marketing; and we design and build transformative brand experiences across branch networks, leading the construction of physical spaces that drive business advantage and make the brand experience real. 

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