We helped KeyBank express its “People First” promise.


In 2009 with the banking landscape still in a heightened state of transition, consumer confidence in banks was on the decline. Although it prided itself on community focus and a customer-centered strategy, KeyBank still struggled to communicate its value to customers with each business division telling the KeyBank story in a different way. Amidst its own internal restructuring, KeyBank approached Siegel+Gale with plans to re-evaluate its brand and establish a foundation for future growth.

Siegel+Gale has helped us communicate our promise, our values and our purpose in clear terms which resonate with employees and clients.

Mickey Mencin, Advertising Director at KeyBank


Our deep dive into KeyBank’s organization and offerings revealed many positive sentiments about their personalized customer focus. However, due to an ambiguous and generic brand strategy, these sentiments were stifled. To clearly communicate their human approach, we anchored KeyBank’s strategic platform to the brand promise of “People First,” showing exactly what they bring to banking. This promise would also help unify the bank’s many business units.

Pleased with this brand promise, KeyBank asked us to craft a statement of purpose—an overarching statement that showed why KeyBank’s 16,000 employees do what they do every day. To gather inspiration, our team tapped into the bank’s core truths: community impact, teamwork and enduring partnerships. We simplified these truths into a single statement: “KeyBank helps our clients and communities thrive.”


Armed with its new strategy, KeyBank emerged as a unified, more competitive organization. To help KeyBank live the brand every day, we amplified the brand platform and brand purpose through many external and internal tools. The new tagline, advertisements, marketing communications, employee toolkits and retail/merchandising strategy helped spread the word and join the divisions under a common identity and story. Employees are now able to connect with customers by embodying the bank’s promise and putting people first.

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