Intelligent Finance (IF) has triggered a dispute with Virgin One over an advertisement which portray...
Intelligent Finance (IF) has triggered a dispute with Virgin One over an advertisement which portrays an Intelligent Finance customer saying she was better off after she moved her account from Virgin One to Intelligent Finance.
"I used to keep all my money together in one account at Virgin One. But I didn't feel comfortable or in control. So I visited if.com… I really wanted to keep things separate and thought the Intelligence Finance plan made a lot of sense" says the IF advertising campaign. These are the first lines of the advertisement that sparked the discord
Virgin One reacted with a release commenting that 'The Virgin One account has poured scorn on IF's latest advertising campaign.' Jayne-Anne Gadhia, managing director of Virgin One says: "The adverts focus on what they claim is a shortcoming of the One account - that all the customer's money is held in one account." Gadhia also mentioned that plans are already in the pipeline to improve the Virgin One account so as to give investors the flexibility of viewing their mortgages, savings and loans separately. These changes are meant to be effective from the end of the month.
Angela McIntosh, marketing director of Intelligent Finance maintains that the advertising campaign was not intended to 'single them [Virgin One] out'. She says: "I'm a bit surprised by the ferocity of Virgin's response to a simple advertising campaign that is headed by a real customer."
McIntosh goes on to comment on the changes to the Virgin One account and says: "It's strange that they choose now- a full four years after launch to produce what can only be called a poor imitation of our account." She then compares the number of customers, 70,000, Virgin One has to the number of accounts, 327,000, that Intelligent Finance has.
Commenting on McIntosh's response, James Duffell, head of communications at Virgin One says: "McIntosh has been comparing the number of customers we have to the number of accounts that Intelligence Finance hold. So this means that if one of their customers have four accounts they would account for it four times. Moreover we have not revealed the details of the changes to the Virgin One account yet so it would be unjust to call it an imitation."
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