Chicago bank targets Latino niche

CHICAGO: Harris Bank, a major midwest financial institution, has stepped up its PR efforts in the Hispanic community.

CHICAGO: Harris Bank, a major midwest financial institution, has stepped up its PR efforts in the Hispanic community.

CHICAGO: Harris Bank, a major midwest financial institution, has

stepped up its PR efforts in the Hispanic community.



The move is significant in that few, if any, banks in the region have

embarked on a similar marketing push. In addition to PR-centric and

advertising initiatives, Harris (a unit of the Bank of Montreal) is also

opening new branches in Hispanic neighborhoods and adding a

Spanish-language component to its web site.



Maeve Kiley, a senior media relations manager at Harris, said that

branches in Hispanic neighborhoods are being supplied with bilingual

materials and that a bilingual call center has been established. Other

planned PR support includes publicizing branch openings, creating

community outreach programs and attempting to promote the bank’s

Hispanic executives to Hispanic media outlets. Harris has also created a

Hispanic banking group that will receive PR support from the bank’s

corporate communications department.



The bank plans to work with Lazos Latinos, a Hispanic strategic branding

and marketing firm, as well as with Comadres, which will coordinate

advertising and in-branch marketing efforts.



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