HDFC Bank Marketing – ATMs are back in the ads

Major Indian banks with large number of ATMs always include their ATM network as an important point in their marketing communications. But when RBI made third party ATM transactions free of service charge last year, it was debated whether the rapid expansion of ATM networks by the big banks will really give the desired advantage. However the free period was short lived and in 6 months the free access was restricted to 5 transactions per month with an upper limit of Rs 10,000 per transaction.

And the ATMs are back in the ads now but with a shift from the largest ATM network to the fastest ATM. HDFC ATM’s allow the customers to store their favorite transaction and then give quick access to that transaction with a favorite button rather than going thru multiple screens every time and thus helps in 40% faster cash withdrawal. HDFC is communicating this benefit to the customers thru the “40% Faster ATM” TVC series.

Well, reducing the transaction time is fine, but anyway the speed in which one can walk in and out of the ATM in peak time is more dependent on the queue size in ATMs than on the no. of screens one has to access. Also people would love to get in the ATM that is less crowded than the one, which is 40% faster.

However the ATM ad is well positioned to fit with the HDFC Bank’s tag line “We understand your world” by focusing on the real issues like parking problems that underscores the need for faster ATMs and thus delivers the message clearly that they care for their customers.  True, if not more ATMs to reduce the crowd, at least have faster ATMs to serve them better.

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