Apr 29 2008
So how depressing is this? I walk by a Citi (CitiBank? CitiFinancial? Why is an enormous financial institution named with a misspelled word, anyway?) location, and they’ve got these colorful advertisements for their Citi-Online service (an online-banking service), with pictures of people doing various activities and cutesy questions like “Our place? Or yours?”, the implication being that your life would be ever so much more fulfilling if only you could bank anyplace you happened to find yourself.
And what the heck do they mean when they use bank as a verb, anyway? It really makes no sense in this context.
I want very few things from my bank — I want them to pay me for the privilege of holding my vast fortune, to give it to me when I want it, and to give it to whoever else I (and only I!) tell them to. That’s it. So, basically, with a cell phone, I can’t get my money, so the only thing I could be doing with my money is paying bills.
Whee! I can pay bills anywhere!
What’s really setting me off here is one particular ad — a picture of a guy at a beautiful campsite, silhouetted against a fabulous sunset, working — banking? — on a laptop.
How freaking depressing! This is supposed to attract me to your institution? The possibility of being so shackled to my bills and financial life that I’ve got to haul my laptop to a campground?
Now, granted, I’m a high-tech camper. I probably tote more batteries than food when I’m camping. But I’m not hauling stuff to a mountaintop so I can pay my bills.
I know! Let’s advertise more mutually incompatible activities as if they weren’t completely insane!
- Netflix: “Watch our DVDs — while you drive!”
- Nintendo: “Play video games — while you’re mountain biking!”
- Michael’s Craft Stores: “Knit a sweater — scuba diving!”
- Research In Motion: “Check your email on your BlackBerry — while watching your kid’s school play!”
Wait a minute. I see people doing that last one all the time.
Maybe Citi’s on to something….