In a saturated marketplace, Willamette Community Bank needed to differentiate, reach their four core audiences, and replace an antiquated brand and website. To develop their answers, they came to the MAC.
Long before our project began, Willamette Community Bank had spent several years defining their target industries and homing in on what they do best. With plans to move into a new market in Salem, they decided there’s no time like the present to reinvent an antiquated website. What the new brand and custom website needed to express, however, was an unknown.
The MAC worked with WCB to help them identify what they needed to make their move a success. Then we updated their visual identity, redesigned their website, expanded its functionality, and developed content and voice to represent their value faithfully.
Our client operates in a saturated market. With that in mind, they needed to differentiate. They also needed to refresh their brand and make a more powerful promise to their four core business audiences. Add to that, their website was painfully antiquated, both in how it looked and in what it could do. That, too, had to change.
As a financial institution, WCB needed to position itself as a stable funding partner who’s able to provide solid, ongoing financial advice. They knew their website needed to represent who they are and what they do best. They knew that in a digital age, it had to be fast, robust, and easy to use. What they didn’t know is what they wanted it to look like or say.
Our team met with our client’s board, talked a little, and listened a lot. Then we interviewed customers, tellers, employees, managers, and directors. We also performed a tech audit, competitive analysis, and brand audit. “The MAC’s first step was to get to know us and what we value,” said Joan Reukauf, President and CEO of WCB. “We didn’t know what we were looking for at first, but the MAC was able to pull it out of us. They helped us discover what we wanted to put out there.”
Our team noticed that while WCB serves both businesses and individuals, its focus is business-first. The brand needed to convey that. Also, having worked hard to identify their four target industries — with a particular emphasis on farming and agricultural businesses — they needed to communicate those areas clearly.
Being a regional institution that prides itself on personalized service, WCB also had to demonstrate its local character and connect with its customers in a genuine, place-specific way.
As the MAC moved into implementation, we worked closely with WCB to match the final product to their goals, including their voice at every step. Our first order of business was to refresh the outdated brand with an aesthetic appropriate for a digital audience, while keeping its traditional personality intact.
Drawing from their customers’ experience, we developed an authentic voice to speak directly to the communities that WCB serves, which is expressed through original copywriting, photography, and testimonials. The new messaging positions the bank as a trustworthy neighbor, conveying friendly professionalism in a business-casual voice.
We created front page banners that speak directly to people working in our client’s four core business areas, with custom navigation tabs to highlight the business products that WCB offers those industries. The custom website we developed integrates securely with WCB’s third-party online banking services.
The MAC didn’t walk in and tell us how it should look. They showed us how we could get there together. It made us appreciate the finished product so much more: you see it grow, mature, progress. And you fall in love with it.
When WCB asked the MAC to refresh their brand, they didn’t know exactly what they were looking for. We partnered with them to unfold the answers, reinforce their unique position in the marketplace, and empower them to grow where they can grow best.
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