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Charles Schwab dabbles in mobile advertising with multichannel campaign

November 11, 2011

The Charles Schwab ads

Financial institution Charles Schwab is incorporating mobile in a new advertising series for its “Talk to Chuck” campaign.

In addition to mobile, the campaign is being promoted via television, print and online ads. The ads are part of Charles Schwab’s bigger marketing initiatives to help consumers with straight forward and clear banking services.

“The new campaign is a reflection of how the markets, investors and Charles Schwab have evolved since Talk to Chuck first launched,” said Michael Cianfrocca, spokesman for Charles Schwab, San Francisco.

“Schwab has become more than the discount brokerage that some people still view us to be, and today’s interest among clients in getting investing help and guidance from us continues to grow,” he said.

Mobile shift
Charles Schwab is integrating mobile as a way to leverage existing campaigns.

The company’s “Talk to Chuck” campaign has been used for Charles Schwab for six years and is one of the company’s signature services.

“Talk to Chuck” is a campaign that encourages consumers to visit a Charles Schwab location and talk about the company’s transparent, actionable and clear services.

By tapping into mobile ads, Charles Schwab has realized that there is an opportunity to leverage this same message with mobile users.

For the “Talk to Chuck” campaign, mobile makes a natural ad platform because consumers are increasingly looking to their mobile devices for clear-cut and simple answers to questions they have while on the go.

The Charles Schwab news is also evidence that mobile is a channel that needs to be used in conjunction with more traditional advertising models including print and TV.

The Charles Schwab iPhone app

“Mobile is an important channel for us as its use by consumers steadily increases, but equally important are our phone, branch and Web channels,” Mr. Cianfrocca said.

On-the-go banking
This is not Charles Schwab’s first mobile endeavor.

The company recently launched its first banking application for Android phones after releasing one for iPhone devices (see story).

Charles Schwab also has a mobile Web site and a iPad magazine app.

Using mobile advertising to spread the word about financial services is a quick and easy way for banks to promote their products where consumers are likely to see them.

Additionally, consumers are relying on their mobile devices to do more with their bank accounts, whether it is through an app, SMS or a mobile-optimized Web site.

According to a recent comScore study, almost 13 million United States’ consumers used a banking app in July, showing a 45 percent increase from 2010.

“Consumers have an increasing appetite for mobile solutions, specifically when it comes to things like checking account balances, paying bills and transferring money between accounts,” Mr. Cianfrocca said.

“We have also seen a rapid uptake of clients depositing checks from their mobile devices,” he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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