SAN ANTONIO -- SWBC will soon be known as the financial services company formerly known as Southwest Business Corp.
SWBC launched a local awareness campaign to create buzz in its local market and better position itself to expand its menu of services nationally, said its Vice President of Marketing Julie Ring. The campaign will include simplifying the company's name and introducing a new slogan. Direct and to the point, the slogan is "We do that too."
For years, SWBC has struggled with name recognition in the San Antonio area. Instead of being called Southwest Business Corp., the company has decided to use the acronym SWBC. "We received feedback that the name Southwest Business Corp. limits the company to a regional area," said Chairman Charlie Amato. "SWBC actually does business in all 50 states." Amato also said using Southwest Business Corp. also gave people the perception the company only did business with businesses.
A committee of marketing people tinkered with various slogans and hit a wall trying to find one that covered all of SWBC's offerings, which include services to businesses, families and individuals. SWBC has personal and business insurance, employee benefits, mortgages and investments, said Ring.
One day, a graphic designer just doodled "We do that too" and it struck the right chord. "It crosses the retail part and covers everything," said Ring. "We started using it internally in company meetings and employees really took to it. It just caught on."
Focus group sessions showed that people in the San Antonio market didn't know the extent of the company's business, thinking it regional in scope, and in trying to expand its retail offerings SWBC found its name held it back somewhat. "We never did focus groups before so we didn't know what to expect," said Ring. "But we didn't get any big surprises, but the SWBC thing was a surprise. People said, 'You're a national company, but your name sounds limited.' So we realized it seemed confusing."
Ring noted that the company had been using the acronym for some time, so she didn't think anyone would be taken aback by the shift, and all legal documentation and filings remain unchanged.
"SWBC is a one-stop shop for all of your financial services needs," said President Gary Dudley. "For example, you can get your mortgage and your homeowner's insurance with us and simplify the process." Ring said SWBC is refocusing on its AutoPilot program, which provides comprehensive collateral protection but also specializes in major mechanical protection debt cancellation and payment protection insurance.
SWBC's new campaign will tout its impressive growth and employment numbers, Ring said. At the end of 2006, SWBC's gross revenue was $120 million. This figure increased by 54% to $185 million at the end of 2007. The number of employees grew from 730 at the end of 2006 to 947 at the end of 2007. Currently, SWBC has 1,024 employees.
"We'll be using conventional media like radio and print ads in addition to billboards and ads at movie theatres and at the airport," said Ring.