Slideshow Overused Bank Brands

  • August 20 2013, 8:00am EDT
9 Images Total

Banks rely on their names to create stable, trustworthy images. Unfortunately, their copy-cat tactics also create confusion and demonstrate a lack of creativity, branding experts say. Here are some notable, overused examples. (Image: Thinkstock)

Aspire to Finish First

More than 265 institutions go by First National Bank, which is often followed by a hometown or state name, according to the FDIC. The biggest is First National Bank of Omaha, which is headquartered in Nebraska's tallest building, First National Tower.

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Another First

First Financial is also quite popular. SCBT Financial in Columbia, S.C., became the latest to adopt the name after buying First Financial Holdings in Charleston. SCBT stood for South Carolina Bank & Trust. (Image: Thinkstock)

Security Blanket

Banks like to let customers know that their money is safe, prompting several institutions to incorporate "security" into their brand. In Iowa, Security State Bank in Radcliffe recently agreed to buy Security State in nearby Hubbard. Nationwide, there are 34 Security State Banks, including six in Iowa.

Banking on Heritage

Several publicly traded banks incorporate "heritage" into their corporate brand, including California's Heritage Commerce and Heritage Oaks and Heritage Financial in Washington. (Image: Thinkstock)

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Sense of Direction

Scores of financial institutions incorporate geography into their brands. Those banks include Southwest Georgia, Northeast Bancorp in Maine and Southern First in South Carolina. (Image: Thinkstock)

Home Sweet Home

The word "home" conveys comfort and warmth. More than 80 banks have embraced that notion, including Home Bancshares in Arkansas, Home Federal Bancorp in Idaho and HomeStreet in Washington. (Image: Thinkstock)

Staying Independent

Banks (and most Americans) like to promote freedom, so it makes sense that institutions would promote their independence. Four publicly traded institutions go by Independent Bank (and that excludes the similarly named Idaho Independent Bank). (Image: Thinkstock)

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Power to the People

Community banks take pride in their customer service, and many use the word "people" to relate to clients. Notables include People's United in Connecticut, Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina and People's Federal in Massachusetts. (Image: Thinkstock)