Marketing Strike: BofA Ends Free Checking
Bank of America eliminated eBanking accounts last month, transferring their owners into accounts that charge a maintenance fee if they don’t maintain a minimum balance or get direct deposit. Account holders are placed into BofA’s Core Checking, an account that requires customers to maintain a minimum daily balance of $1,500 or at least one direct deposit a month of $250 or more — which comes out to $3,000 annually. Customers in these accounts are charged $12 a month if they cannot meet these requirements. The change has prompted a backlash online, including a storm of tweeters professing their intention to close their accounts and criticizing the bank for its effects on low-income customers. A Change.org petition protesting the move has also drawn more than 288,000 signatures (of the 300,000 wanted) as of this writing. This is a golden opportunity for credit unions to pounce and capitalize on Bank of America’s announcement. Do it today! Do it while consumer outrage is hot and customers are still seething with anger. Marketing pro tip: Start a social media campaign linking to articles about the elimination of these accounts. Welcome BofA affected customers to your ‘always will be free’ checking.
~John-Ashley Paul, President/CEO