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Title: Money goes to market : the marketization and promotion of the British joint stock banks 1950-1990.
Author: Botterill, Jackie.
ISNI:       0000 0000 5208 6214
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2001
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While most advertising studies examine the promotion of goods, this study of 50 years of British bank advertising examines the promotion of intangible services (money). After World War Two, regulatory and social changes propelled British banks into the market. The banks employed marketing communication to accommodate themselves to an emerging consumer society in three phases: pre-marketing (after 1950), expansionary (after 1970) and saturation (after 1985) periods. A content analysis of key psycho-social values contained in 805 post-1950 print and television advertisements revealed the banks' adjustment to an increasingly 'de-traditionalised' society in which citizens had to be addressed as autonomous, consuming subjects. Applying Marchand's (1986) insights into the therapeutic role of advertising, the study reflects on how advertising agencies assuaged the publics' institutional alienation with comforting metaphors of the 'friendly bank'; addressed countercultural disdain to a mass society by affirming individuality within a rhetoric of customised services and empowered consumers (Frank, 1997); and counteracted cynicism towards a glutted promotional culture by constructing more 'diverse', 'realist', and 'authentic' messages. The advertisements also articulated new money values, softening the transition from a productionist or war economy (in which money was represented as scarce, precious, and in need of safekeeping) to a consumer economy (in which money was an abundant necessity, in need of constant circulation). Credit, the enabling instrument of this circulation, was presented as a viable means to maintain and extend one's lifestyle. 'Identity work' and 'money work' appeared to be intertwined deeply in a consumer culture. The discussion of values was extended with a design analysis of bank television branding campaigns, which found that practical values coexisted with postmodem sensibilities. Further, a reception study of 31 young people's interpretation of 9 television campaigns describes how they engaged with advertisements as both media-literate audiences seeking entertainment (and speculating about the intention behind the advertising codes), as well as financial consumers looking for survival tips in the consumer economy. The study also revealed underlying tensions in the banks' contemporary practices: marketbased pressures for brand distinction vs. price competition; consumers' demands for practical fmancial information vs. pressures of communicating in a promotional culture; and profit-driven openness to all consumers vs. market exigencies of targeting profitable niches.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Banking