DraftWorldwide Brands New Bank

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DraftWorldwide, New York, a unit of the Interpublic Group of Companies Inc., is having success with a major new branding effort it designed for a bank created by the merger of three banks on the East Coast.

The rebranding effort is characteristic of the kind of dynamic reshaping of identity that the agency is capable of, said Ray Albergotti, executive vice president and group account director at Draft. Clients are increasingly realizing that direct marketing agencies have specialized expertise that other general agencies often do not have, he said.

The Draft campaign is essentially a major direct mail branding and communications effort announcing to consumers in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut area the merging of Hudson United Bank in New Jersey, Bank of the Hudson in lower New York State, and Lafayette American Bank in Connecticut. The new bank is known as Hudson United Bank, which is part of HUBCO Holdings, Mahwah, NJ.

The entire client branding program, complete with smiling babies, includes consumer direct mail, radio spot buys in seven markets, mobile billboards and print advertising in business publications and local area newspapers. Draft also revamped Hudson United Bank's Web site.

Draft conducted specialized market research and focus groups to determine what the perceptions of the bank were, and what specific communications would be needed.

Ultimately, the agency says HUB's new theme line, "Big Enough to Deliver. Small Enough to Care," sums up their marketplace positioning.

Hudson United Bank is the second largest bank holding company in New Jersey with 168 branches.

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