Friday, November 4, 2011

"Go Local" Should Be the Battle Cry

By Michael Scheibach, Executive Editor, BankNews

Oh, yes, "Bank Transfer Day" - and the whole anti-Big Bank  movement - is making the national news. And thousands of unhappy campers are participating. And, unfortunately, much of the media has the misguided notion that "transfer" refers only to credit unions -- forgetting about community banks, which, by the way, are a better choice for those people looking for FDIC-insured accounts and a strong, diversified family of services to choose from, not simply free checking.

Rather than "Bank Transfer," the battle cry should be "Go Local." Three cheers for ICBA's "Go Local" campaign, which is promoting the many benefits of community banks.

“By going local and banking locally with your community bank, consumers can make a real difference in the lives of their neighbors and the future of their community,” said Sal Marranca, ICBA chairman and president and CEO of Cattaraugus County Bank, Little Valley, N.Y. “They’ll be making a hometown investment they can be proud of.  After all, the money they deposit in their community bank will be reinvested in ways that drive their local economy, such as in the form of loans to local residents who want to buy a home or to small business owners who are looking to open shop on Main Street.”

Community banks need to promote "Go Local" to their own customers, as well as to the communities they serve, to ensure that everyone clearly understands the value of the community banks.

BankNews would like to hear how your community bank is responding to the backlash against Big Banks. Send me your comments at