Metro Bank

3 May 2010 – 10:13 am

MB - May 2010

I have been tracking Metro Bank for a while.

Modwenna Rees-Mogg of AngelNews recently invited me to an evening with Howard Flight and other City figures. Howard is involved in Metro Bank, and I have to say, the approach and branding so far are really interesting. A garish colour scheme and logo, shouts consumer and looks more akin to a supermarket than bank.

Metro Bank has been brave to break the norms and really think about its offering and target customer. This is reflected in its communications.

With low interest rates, in branch toilets and favourable opening hours, Metro Bank is certainly taking an alternative approach. Initially opening two branches in Central London, it aims to spread around the M25 area.

Is this a time to be launching a new bank? Has Metro Bank taken the right approach? Does Metro Bank look serious enough for a bank?

  1. 6 Responses to “Metro Bank”

  2. great post as usual!

    By MarkSpizer on May 3, 2010

  3. Have not seen them as yet but I like the innovative approach. Garish and a bit tacky but an interesting service proposition and they could be the next “Egg”….

    By Rowan Heasley on May 5, 2010

  4. Bank brand management used to be something that could be detached from politics but we may be in a phony war before the politicians start to intervene much more radically in the conduct of banks. This is already starting in the US with the move on Goldman Sachs and it will come to Europe after the sovereign debt crisis has stopped distracting public attention.

    The point is that a Lib-Con Government here (if it happens) may be paradoxically more likely to intervene than a New Labour one for complicated ideological reasons but also because some populist action directed at the banks might ease the pain of tougher action on tax and spend.

    The point about Metro’s image in this context is that if it is preparing to compete with (say) Tesco Bank or even HSBC at a national level, it is a brilliant brand model but it may need to be accompanied by some serious PR efforts to associate lively branding with corporate responsive to still unclear ethical populist demands that are going to emerge as we deal with our debt overhang.

    This re-thinking of the social role of our financial services sector could be a major opportunity for ‘lively brands’ (especially as the conservative brands were signally un-conservative in their lending policies) but they need to be handled with sophistication and care. It is not just about lobbying but about understanding public worry about risk and public demand for protective intervention.

    Both Banco Santander and HSBC appear to be getting it right at the moment … Metro and Tescos are likely to do so but Metro could slip up if it doesn’t keep its eye on a very volatile political situation and appears to be an agent for another dangerous credit boom amongst the ‘masses’.

    By Tim Pendry on May 8, 2010

  5. I think the landscape of consumer banking is changing…and Metro Bank seems to be just ahead of the curve. I think the thing that will set them apart of the other new entrants, will be there online presence, use of social media and phone apps…if they get it right of course:)

    By Adrian on Jul 13, 2010

  6. My wife and I went to Metro Bank yesterday to open an account and were not at all impressed. I managed to open an account; my wife was rejected as a customer. The whole exterience was somewhat unpleasant and I thank God that running an account can be done by phone and internet – I don’t want to ever set foot in that place again.

    By Chris Butterworth on Aug 30, 2010

  7. @all thanks for the great comments, much appreciated.

    By Xavier on Sep 9, 2010

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