As you've probably figured by now, Citi's niche in the finance world is ad campaigns. They absolutely love 'em, the worse the better. Particularly when times are tough and people are questioning the bank's ability to do anything but fuck up, the Big C knows the way turn things around is as simple as fantabulous new slogan plastered all over town. Last year it was the bold proclamation that everyone working there is an insomniac and the year before that it was copy written by Larry the Cable Guy. Things have been going pretty smoothly for a while, but now Citi's starting to get the sense that once again, they're being seconded guessed. That they're getting a reputation. That it really wasn't an "honest mistake" when Geithner referred to the place as "shittygroup" on the phone the other night. And they know what they have to do.
Citigroup, Wall Street's poster child for bad banks, is about to launch an advertising campaign aimed at burnishing its badly tarnished image, sources tell The Post. According to people familiar with the matter, Citi as soon as next month could pull the wraps off an ad blitz that will highlight its virtues and looks to build public confidence for a management team that has been under fire ever since Citi took $45 billion in federal rescue cash.
Though details of the ad campaign are scant, the media push is expected to spell out the positive strides that Citi has made in using taxpayer money, such as helping consumers stay in their homes by modifying home mortgages, and defend the bank and CEO Vikram Pandit against those pressing for a change of leadership, sources said. It's not clear if Pandit will be featured in any ads.
Obviously, first off, the ads must feature Pandito. But in what sort of scenarios? Helping a family of four move into their new home? Playing the role of a loan officer stamping "approved!"? As for defending his role at the top, it'd probably be smart to do a least a couple spots reminding people that even though he wanted it very badly, Vikula gave up his dream of a $10 million Zen Garden, because that's just the kind of CEO he is. What else would inspire confidence? Vickles sitting soberly on the Gulfstream with the words, "You won't see this guy catching a beej at 30,000 feet" at the bottom? A badly photoshopped image of VP spooning in bed with John Paulson and "If was willing to get behind this thing so should you, STFU" in huge letters? We're told insiders are dying to do a shot of Vikram (jokingly) putting the Dollar Dominatrix in a choke-hold with the line, "We certainly showed this one, eh?" but it probably won't fly. Let's put our heads together here.