Mercantile Bank Retail banking brand campaign
Based in Grand Rapids, MI, Mercantile Bank had recently grown from six to 47 branches through a merger that combined two other competing banks and their branches under the Mercantile Bank brand. A recognized long-time leader in bringing technological solutions to the marketplace, underpinned by a premium customer experience, Mercantile’s market grew exponentially in a very short period of time.
With a larger, state-wide footprint, Mercantile Bank asked ddm to explore some campaign ideas that would hit hard on its status as a local bank that understands the importance of community and its desire to serve the communities where it does business.
The primary goal of our efforts was to help Mercantile Bank build credibility across the communities it serves. Realizing that the markets in urban Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo are much different than the rural communities located throughout the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, a hyper-local campaign titled “Mercantile Bank Gets It” was launched with a nod to toward those unique attributes. In addition to general season-driven messaging, local legends, landmarks, geographies, and current goings-on were highlighted and promoted heavily in outdoor advertising. By acknowledging how unique each of its regions and branches are, Mercantile Bank proved it “got it."
We also coordinated original market research through focus group testing. The results of the focus groups helped inform our strategy and provided key insights into Mercantile’s target audiences.
The Mercantile brand was humanized and accepted as a legitimate member of the community and not just another big national or regional bank going through the motions. Additionally, social media shares increased, Mercantile received more earned media coverage, and goodwill was fostered within the communities. Within the bank, employee engagement increased, deposits grew, customer retention increased, and commercial lending activity rose.
The icing on the cake was that Mercantile was named “Best Bank in Grand Rapids” in an annual community survey by Grand Rapids Magazine for the first time in its 20+ year history.
- Marketing + Communications Strategy
- Content + Communications
- Branding + Design
- Media Planning + Buying
- Web + Apps