Ad Nauseam: What Are You Implying, Chase?

Chase_small.jpgPhoto by Matthew Roth

to town Chase.  I’m super impressed you have been reading Streetsblog
San Francisco and made an ad that reflects some of the knowledge you’ve
acquired here. This is obviously a shout out to the car-free community.
Might the admen understand the incredible cost savings of ditching the car
for a bike, which can save you more than $9,000 every year in direct
vehicle costs, not to mention the health savings from an active
lifestyle and the peace of mind of contributing fewer greenhouse gases
to a dangerously warming planet?

Or maybe this is an
homage to the cyclist as hero, walking into the sunset after defeating
the highway lobby in Washington and securing billions for transit in
the re-authorization of the transportation act.

I’m not sure a big bank like that has the time in between taking billions of taxpayer bailouts and spending them on new airplanes
to focus on the subtleties of the message they’re sending to the more
than one-hundred thousand San Franciscans who ride weekly.

What do you think, Streetsblog Nation?

(Editor’s note: I left all the San Francisco references in the article because it reads better than my attempts to re-write it.  Rest assured, I’ve seen the same billboard here in L.A., although I didn’t have my camera on me at the moment – D)

  • I think they are reaching out to the car community. I have seen this new reach out to the “alternative” community. Ads where people have tattoos or lots of piercing and the bank is like, “hey we want your money too!”

    Now if it was implying you’re broke and you need some money come with us I would think it would be done differently. I’ve never seen the bank reach out to people because they thought they were poor or couldn’t afford a car. At least not like that.

    Ads tend to reach out to people who they think are not as affluent with real people, so those people definitely know its them they are talking to. This ad seems a bit too glossy for that demographic (I’m not saying it’s right I’m saying that’s just what I’ve seen.)

    But who knows…it does look like he’s carrying the bike like it’s a burden or something, maybe its appealing to the new broke hipster.

    “You’ve lost your artsy job. You’ve moved back in with your parents. You are now carFREE owing to that repo. There are some things when you don’t have money you just can’t do anymore, but now that you don’t have the burden of rent and a car or health insurance or dignity, it’s time to celebrate with getting back into debt again. Your mom paid off that other credit card bill right?”

    There are some things without money you just can’t do any more, for the rest there’s Mastercard (if you get your dad to co-sign.)


  • what the hell does this mean?!?! i’ve seen it too. does it mean that because we’re bicyclists, we are some how poor money managers?

    or, if we had better banks, we wouldn’t be relegated to slummin’ it on two wheels?

    chase is just another corporation, shooting fish in a barrel. pick on the easy target, the person who bicycles for transportation. cause Lord knows… we want everyone to feel sorry for us.

    my associate contacted chase’s media department who responded:
    “hey, i ride an expensive mountain bike.”

    corporate empathy!

  • Will Campbell

    It’s all too clear. In this mid-recession, post-stability world ChaseFormerlyWaMu clearly understands the pain of Mr. Silhouette there, he of previously repo’d car, who can’t even afford new innertubes for the Huffy he had to buy from KMart, that he’s now forced to lug around in faux cyclo-cross style.

    Or it could be even worse: the bright light beyond him is the beam of a search light from a cop car lighting him up and catching him in the act of stealing someone else’s Huffy.

    Either way though, never fear ChaseFormerlyWaMu is here to help. With a car loan. Or bail. Thank gawd they’re here. Thank. Gawd.

  • As far as I’m concerned, if Chase can give me money for opening a checking account ($100 last December), I’m happy. From watching their ads on TV, I think they are trying to be positive. The bicyclist looks like he is doing this recreationally, and is in pretty good shape, not a fat slob who got his car repossessed. The other auto oriented billboard is the one that says “Sorry we just got here. We got stuck in traffic.” with the Chasemark ™ in the rear view mirror.

    By the way, anyone who bought Jack in the Box stock after Jack was hit by a bus ended up beating the Dow by 5%. Despite all the hand-wringing from Damien and the commenters, the Jack in the Box campaign was extremely successful and cemented Jack in the Box as the fast food choice among young adults. Let’s see how well Chase stock does after this ad. I think it will do pretty well.



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