Westpac has launched a PR campaign to its customers, sending them an email with an accompanying animated video justifying its interest rate rise by comparing it to the cost of bananas.
The email was sent after the bank lifted its standard variable mortgage rate by 45 basis points last week – nearly double the Reserve Bank’s 25-basis-point increase earlier that same day.
The voice over in the video tells customers that “once upon a time” there were big fields of banana crops, but a storm came and damaged the crops, diminishing supply. He goes on the say that because of the storm, the price of bananas went up and it then cost more to make a banana smoothie, in turn pushing the price to buy a smoothie up by 50 cents.
The voice over goes on to say:
In 2007 the world of money changed. The money that banks needed to buy started to cost them a lot more, just like the bananas for the smoothies. All across the world there was tremendous worry and fear. This created a knock on effect and soon money to buy at any price was in very short supply.
When a storm blows in we have to ask ourselves some very serious questions. We need to baton down the hatches but still ensure our foundations are safe for future storms.
At times we have to make decisions that make us unpopular, but being popular is not our focus. Our focus is that we remain a healthy Australian business so we’ll be there for Australian families when they need us.”
Earlier this year Westpac launched a new ad campaign featuring the tagline “We are a bank you can bank on”. It was created by ad agency The Campaign Palace.