BankNorth in South Dakota: Values-Based Banking

BankNorth TV - BankNorth in South Dakota: Values-Based Banking by Fredricks Communications

Click to watch :30 TV – “BankNorth in South Dakota: Values-Based Banking” by Fredricks Communications and Midco.

For the first time in its nearly 115-year history, BankNorth has moved beyond the borders of its home. Today, First State Bank of Warner, S.D., opened its branches in Aberdeen and Warner, S.D. with its new name, BankNorth. The acquisition announcement is supported with print, radio and television ads, media relations and direct mail. Fredricks Communications provided connecting, scriptwriting, art direction and project management services.

The message –

“First State Bank of Warner is Now BankNorth, and we’re excited about the direction we’re headed. We’ve been First State Bank of Warner for a long time, and over the years, honesty, loyalty and integrity have been our guide. We’re still the same people in the same locations, and those same values still drive how we work with you every day.”

The acquisition announcement is part of a larger rebranding campaign for BankNorth, which was formerly First State Bank of North Dakota. Check out additional campaign elements and the new BankNorth website.

Thank you to BankNorth for allowing Fredricks Communications to be part of this project, and to all Fredricks Communications partners who helped pull everything off so beautifully: Bock’s Office Transformational Consulting, Creative Monke, Kelner Communications, Knight Printing, Midco, Solberg Design and Video Arts Studios.

Caribou Love

A little love can go a long way… sometimes even to a comped cuppa.

 

Screenshot of Fredricks Communications tweet

This morning I was waiting in line at Caribou Coffee off of 25th Street South in Fargo. It wasn’t a very long line, but I figured I had enough time to put together a tweet.

My middle-aged fingers are pretty slow with the tapping (as my kids remind me every day, it seems), so the line dwindled while I pecked away at my iPhone keys. I wasn’t paying much attention, and just as I was finishing I heard a voice saying, “I can help you here, sir.” Of course I was keeping the barista waiting and there was a line behind me.

I stepped up to the counter, apologizing and explaining that I had been “…giving you guys a little love on Twitter.” 

“Really?” he said. “What’d you write.”

So I showed him. He was saying how cool that was and thanking me when the manager overheard. The manager took a quick glance. “Comp his drink,” he said to the barista.

And that’s how I got my free cuppa joe this morning.

How cool is that?

Here’s to the fine folks @cariboucoffee off of 25th Street South in Fargo, N.D., who’re over there working their butts off right now. If you get a chance, go show ’em some love. You might not get a free cup, but the people and the coffee are great.

Graphic icon for Fredricks Communications

Copywriting: To Split or Not to Split

Screenshot of Martin Fredricks doing vlog post

youtube.com/fredcomm

It’s the second day of the work week, and you know what that means: It’s Tip Tuesday!

This Tuesday we’re talking about splitting infinitives and other verbs in marketing, advertising and public relations copywriting.

<watch the video>

Let me start out by saying I absolutely love The Grammar Girl and grammarist.com, two grammar sources that have given me some peace of mind lately.

You see, once upon a time I had a boss who had a hard-and-fast rule about split verbs and split infinitives. Split infinitives are verb phrases, like “to increase” that are split by a modifying word (usually an adverb).

  • We plan to increase your blog traffic over the next 12 months incrementally.
  • We plan to incrementally increase your blog traffic over the next 12 months.

Split verbs are split by a modifying word (again, usually an adverb).

  • We will respond to any issues that might come up quickly.
  • We will respond quickly to any issues that might come up.

It wasn’t just a rule, either; splitting a verb was verboten. With extreme prejudice. I started having nightmares about a grammar monster with huge, sharp, teeth coming to viciously devour me and the sentences I’d written that day.

<See what I did there? “…to viciously devour…”>

Thing is – and The Grammar Girl, grammarist.com and several other sources back me up on this – there is no such rule in English grammar. Turns out the boss was being a grammatical snob. Which – hey – who am I to criticize? That would be the proverbial pot calling the kettle black.

Thing is – and I say this to aspiring advertising, marketing and public relations writers all the time – in our world, we need to write like people speak. We need to build a rapport, a comfort level with the people seeing, reading or hearing our copy. And we’re never going to connect our clients to their audiences – even retired English teachers – by copywriting like pompous professors.

Besides, people split verbs all the time in everyday conversation. Which sounds better? You tell me –

  • I’m going to run to the store for some milk quickly.
  • I’m going to quickly run to the store for some milk.

Get beyond the split verb issue, and the sentence becomes even less academic –

  • I’m gonna quick run to the store for some milk.

But that’s a subject for another Tip Tuesday….

In your advertising, marketing and public relations, your copywriting needs to sound like you speak. Have a conversation with your audience. And, by all means, split away.

Graphic icon for Fredricks Communications