Will you trust a .org more than a .com?
TIAA-CREF thinks you will. Their new advertising campaign created by Modernista emphasizes its status as a nonprofit organization. Their new campaign, starting this week, focuses on a new website, PowerOf.org.
According to the New York Times article “A Dot-Org Stresses That It’s No Dot-Com“:
“Think .org-onimically,” the headline of a print ad urges. “How much more objective can you get than .o-r-g?” another ad inquires. A third ad declares that “.org” represents “three of the most trusted letters on the Internet.”
In a television commercial, an announcer declares: “We are a financial services dot-org, not a dot-com. For nearly 90 years, our mission has been to put the heart of a nonprofit to work for those who serve the greater good.
“We do this the dot-org way,” the announcer continues, “with low fees, objective advice and a unique insight into the hearts and minds of those who give us hope for the future.” …
I think the campaign has dialed into some powerful emotions about nonprofits that will resonate with their audience. Unfortunately, they’re using the advertising campaign as the driving point to PowerOf.org, and that afterthought of a website is the weak link.
PowerOf.org is a poorly designed website — actually, it’s a mini-site, and part of TIAA-CREF.org. The scent trails are weak, the navigation is worse, the usability is poor — especially those tiny plus signs for “more-ons” — and the messaging is the usual financial services schpiel with a pixie dust sprinkling of the creative that could have been.
I think TIAA-CREF may be onto something, but I’m not impressed with the execution. Too bad they’ll spend all that money on traffic to a website that won’t deliver the customer experience to match.
What do you think?