N.C. Bank Picks BooneOakley

ATLANTA BooneOakley said it won the advertising account of First Charter Corp. after a review involving 12 undisclosed shops.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based bank cut the field to three finalists before choosing the independent Charlotte agency. The incumbent was the Charlotte office of Planet Central, an independent shop based in Richmond, Va., which did not defend the account.

The first work from BooneOakley is scheduled to launch next month to promote the bank’s opening of four branches in Raleigh, N.C. The media mix includes print, radio, outdoor, direct mail and the Internet.

The next campaign is scheduled for May and will run in the Charlotte area, according to the agency.

Spending was not disclosed, but the bank spent $400,000 on advertising in 2004 and $200,000 during the first nine months of last year, according to TNS Media Intelligence.

First Charter is a regional banking company with 55 branches and four insurance offices throughout North Carolina. The bank said it needed new creative work to support its expansion.

“As a small bank in the valley of the shadow of giants like Wachovia and Bank of America, we know we need nothing less than breakthrough creative just to be noticed,” said Kevin Toomb, the banks’ director of marketing. “BooneOakley demonstrated an ability to do that.”