What comes to mind when you think of a fox? A mischievous, cunning, sly trickster, who relies on his intelligence and wiles to outsmart larger, stronger rivals perhaps?
Bankwest’s site describes Fox thus: “He’s clever, quick-witted and financially savvy, and he knows a thing or two about simple ideas for smart credit cards, that’s why he’s Australia’s savvy shopper expert.” (Image from Bankwest.com.au)
While undoubtedly this plays to the positive associations with foxes, I can’t help but question the choice of associating a fox with a banking product, especially one that relies on the consumer getting into debt to turn a profit.
Being an Australian bank, Bankwest should also have known that the fox is an introduced pest. One that causes millions of dollars of damage annually to the sheep industry, as well as untold damage to the environment and native species.
I’m sure Bankwest intended no hidden messages in their use of this character. It is a cute character, like the rest of the happiness team.