Citi’s Looking for a Revival


According to The Wall Street Journal, Publicis reached into the archives for Citigroup.

Beginning this weekend, Citigroup will kick off a global ad campaign that reprises the tagline “The Citi Never Sleeps,” which made its debut in 1978. In digging into its marketing vault, Citi is engaging in the popular ad strategy of using a familiar catchphrase as a tonic during periods of economic and other uncertainty.
(but) Some ad experts believe Citi is going in the wrong direction with its latest ads. “With the situation that our economy is in now, it’s unrealistic to think that nostalgia will be comforting to people, because people are dealing with harsh realities,” says Rita Rodriguez, chief executive of the U.S. division of the Brand Union, a branding company owned by WPP Group PLC.

I don’t know. Whatever the economy’s doing, people still have dreams they want to make realities of, and that often means having a friend at the bank. A friend who doesn’t sleep “on the job.”

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.