With John Stumpf now spending more time cross-selling his family, the campaign to rehabilitate Wells Fargo is really kicking into gear.
In an effort to cauterize the bleeding from the seeping reputational head wound that some calculate could cost Wells Fargo 30% of its customer base and about $8 billion, the bank is making a big show of not paying Stumpf or former community banking head Carrie Tolstedt all of the golden parachute money that folks like them usually get when they "retire." New CEO Tim Sloan has taken on the role of apologizer-in-chief despite being more closely linked to the scandal than Stumpf, and has been relentlessly "on message" about Wells being full of "good people" ready to make things right.
And in the clearest sign yet that Wells Fargo is looking to show America that it's sorry but also still awesome, it just did a major TV ad buy. Judging from the first ad, it seems like there is still some improvement to be had in the decision-making department.
Take a look:
Umm, Wells Fargo is super sorry, you guys, and it is moving with glacial slowness to fix what it did. But in the meantime please take these vanilla platitudes to heart while hundreds of thousands of you ponder closing your accounts. Slow pacing, bizarrely confident bad symbolism and some serious overwriting? This is the "True Detective Season 2" of bank ads.
It is eerily easy to see Elizabeth Warren watching this on her laptop in her meditation yurt and giggling "What the fuck was that?"
It is also not terribly difficult to envision John Stumpf seeing this on his 70" flat-screen while practicing putting in his man cave and yelling "What the fuck was that!"