BankDirect, the Internet-only division of Texas Capital Bancshares, has begun a national advertising effort.
Its $1 million-plus campaign will extend to yearend, with most of the money going to on-line banner advertising, said Rose Hultgren, president of BankDirect.
Advertising is considered crucial for newly branded on-line ventures. Other Internet banks that have recently begun advertising in regional, national, or on-line markets include Bank One Corp.'s WingspanBank.com, Net.Bank, and USAbanc.com.
BankDirect opened in June and is touting "convenient and competitive products," Ms. Hultgren said. So far it has received more than 1,000 applications.
The campaign began June 9 with a full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal bearing the tag line "Bank Direct. Easy. Money." Other copy read, "For years banks have been getting bigger. We've just made one that's better."
In July, BankDirect began radio advertising in Austin, a city with a high concentration of "technology professionals who know and understand the advantages of the Internet," said bank chairman Jody Grant. That campaign may be expanded to other markets. Mr. Grant is chairman and chief executive officer of BankDirect and of the $200 million Texas Capital Bancshares, which began as an independent start-up in January.
The on-line campaign is being tracked to see which sites are the most effective in generating "the most click-throughs and the most customers," Ms. Hultgren said. Being able to track such results daily is "the beauty and promise of Internet marketing."
BankDirect works with Doubleclick Inc., 24/7 Media Inc., and Broadcast.com, among others, to place ads on the Web.
A checking account at BankDirect offers 3.25% interest, a money market account 5.25%, and a six-month certificate of deposit 5.5%. BankDirect provides an automated teller machine card and each month reimburses customers for the surcharges incurred using other banks' ATMs. The bank also plans to offer credit cards.