Bank of America: Temporarily unavailable

October 4, 2011

How long will Bank of America be temporarily unavailable before their corporate brand is affected?

Bank of America has been making headlines lately. Starting early next year, Bank of America will implement a $5 per month fee to customers who use debit cards for transactions in hopes to counter the newly implemented interchange fee regulation for debit card purchases. Banks are claiming estimated loses in the billions with fee swipe reduction and customers are fuming. Right now, however, Bank of America is in the middle of an even more immediate problem. Bank of America’s web site has been non-functional or barely functional since Friday. There are several million customers who do their banking exclusively online that are unable to pay bills or transfer funds to make important payment deadlines.

To make matters worse, Bank of America is not acknowledging this issue on their homepage or twitter feed, leaving customers stranded and frustrated. Bank of America spokeswoman Tara Burke said, “Customers who experience slowness or can't get into their accounts should keep trying.” Really? For how long?

Simply acknowledging the problem could keep Bank of America in a positive light in the eyes of their customer. It would give some peace of mind knowing that they’re at least trying to do something about this massive cyber-problem. But ignoring a problem of this magnitude can cause irreversible damage to the corporate brand.

The Charlotte, NC based Bank of America is the largest bank in America and the fifth largest company in America. Have they gotten too large to bother with mundane trivialities such as customer service and communication? One would think they would want to keep their standing, rather than letting the favorability aspect of their corporate brand plummet.

What will the impact of Bank of America’s negative news be on this corporate giant’s brand? With approximately 25 million angry customers, it doesn’t look good. However, with proactive communications to their customers, Bank of America could substantially mitigate this problem.

Bank of America homepage

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