BACS hires Band & Brown for PR task

BACs have hired Band & Brown to promote direct debit to UK consumers.

The Bankers’ Automated Clearing Service (BACS) is launching a B2B campaign to persuade companies to use its new online direct debit processing service, having hired Band & Brown Communications for its PR account.

Band & Brown scooped the account, which is believed to be worth around £500,000 a year, after it was resigned by incumbent agency Manning, Selvage & Lee.

A key initial task will be to persuade around 40,000 companies to move to BACSTEL-IP, its internet-based processing system, by the end of next year. BACS plans to migrate all its clients to BACSTEL-IP by 2005, when the company will switch off BACSTEL.

‘We need to expand our communications with our clients and encourage them to move over to BACSTEL-IP,’ said BACS media relations manager Anne-Marie Kesselman.

She added that Band & Brown would also be helping to persuade more consumers to use direct debit as a method of payment for more than one financial transaction.

BACS said that around 75 per cent of UK consumers use direct debit to make regular payments.

BACS’s PR effort will also focus on promoting direct debit as an efficient means of paying business suppliers.

Only about five per cent of businesses use the automatic transfer system to pay their suppliers, while use of direct credit to pay employees is much more widespread.

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