I saw the most stunningly effective billboard yesterday--it made me laugh out loud and think, "You know, these people get it!"
90/94 West goes North
90/04 East goes South
--Harris Bank. We're here to help.
OK, this is probably only funny if you live in Chicago, but this is probably the most helpful thing this bank could ever do for Chicago residents! See, 90/94 is indeed an east-west highway, but in Chicago, it runs north-south, presumably because of the lake and the city's orientation. When I first moved here, I could never remember whether east or west was really north or south, so I often ended up going the wrong direction. And another quirk of Chicago highways is that not all exits/entrances have all four off-on ramps--that is, you might be able to exit easily, but only be able to get back on the highway going east. Want to go west? Too bad; you can't.
The device I used was to remember the movie, North by Northwest. That is, to go north, go must go west.
This billboard was on 290 East, just a few miles before the 90/94 interchange--that is, the perfect place for it! And more importantly, it was actually providing a valuable service. Harris Bank could have put up a billboard that says "We care" or "Award-winning customer service" or "No teller fees." That is what any other bank would have done. That's what people expect in a billboard. We don't expect a bank to actually show us, right then and there, that they provide useful services in our everday lives outside of banking. Astounding!
Take note. How can you make a difference in your customers' lives right now? What can you do to show how great your service is instead of just talking about it? How can you help out in unexpected ways?