What Others Say

Financial Services

Our bank has worked with Lauren and O’Connell Consulting Group for a number of years. Their helpful insights into a comprehensive marketing strategy for a community bank comes from many years of experience in the field, not only working with other banks, but with personal experience in the world of banking. Lauren is very professional, but yet personable in her approach to assisting clients.

For our bank personally, we have found their help with some “non-traditional” marketing items that have come up from time to time to be very helpful as well. An example of this is providing talking points for our employees to use during the rash of credit and debit card compromises that occurred with Target, Home Depot, and others. This tool was very helpful and provided concise and to the point answers for frequently asked questions that come from customers and the media.

If you have questions about any aspect of marketing or providing consulting services for not only your bank, but your business, I highly recommend that you contact Lauren and O’Connell Consulting Group.

Dave Reyher
President Western Division, TBK Bank
(Formerly Colorado East Bank and Trust)

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We have worked with Lauren & O’Connell Consulting Group for several years now. They have provided top notch service and attention to our needs. Lauren takes a down to earth perspective on marketing and is very responsive to our requests. I would highly recommend Lauren & O’Connell Consulting Group to anyone looking to enhance their marketing efforts.

Leif Berg
President
First National Bank of Ordway

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Lauren advised Premier Trade on how best to position itself for a video presentation on the company. She was extremely insightful and her recommendations were instrumental in helping us form and deliver a meaningful company message. We will certainly continue to use her services.

Tom Cavanaugh
President
Premier Trade Solutions, Inc.

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Lauren is awesome!! I hired O’Connell Consulting to help with the gap in our marketing department at the bank. Working with her was a pleasure. She is a person of integrity, very detailed, and professional. She developed new programs, redesigned our web site and took marketing the bank to a new and better level. She is a pleasure to work with and would recommend her and her group to anyone!

Stephen Adams
Vice President, Regional Director
Sterling Bank & Trust

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We contracted with the O’Connell Consulting Group to assist us in the full redesign of our consumer checking account products. In the summer of 2011 we hired Lauren & Ellen to help us with the development of our new products. They did a great job of gathering input from our executive committee, front line staff, and customers as to the features and benefits that our new products should possess. They combined this information with their own market research and industry knowledge to recommend a set of products that did a great job of balancing the desires of our customers with the demands of our Executive Committee.

We contracted with Lauren & Ellen again in 2012 to assist us with communicating the changes in our account structure to our customers. They did a wonderful job of coordinating our efforts and assisting us in the development of our letters, brochures, and other marketing materials. Their efforts were greatly appreciated because they kept us on task and moving forward with the project during a time in which we were short-staffed and busy with several additional projects. It has now been three weeks since we notified our customers of the changes to their accounts and the transition is going better than I ever could have anticipated! The customers appear to be happy with the account changes and the bank is happy with the reduction in costs and increases in service charge revenue we are anticipating from the change.

Jim Hull
Sr. VP, Retail Banking Manager
McCook National Bank

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It is my pleasure to share my thoughts on the value of Lauren’s marketing professionalism in the creation, growth, and sale of Vectra Banking Corporation. The combination of her strategic skills and then disciplined focus on execution made her a key member of the senior management team and contributed to the building of a Colorado banking success story.Lauren’s marketing stamp was part of everything we tried to accomplish. She drove the name selection and brand identity elements which permeated not only Vectra’s marketing, advertising and direct mail but also our training, customer communications and back office systems messaging. This brand identity focus was a key factor in successfully integrating multiple separate banking organizations into the Vectra organization. She also took the initiative to create Vectra’s customer information data base, identified customer profitability, and created marketing programs to generate multiple product sales to existing customers and sourced new customers which fit our target customer profiles. This customer profiling, profitability and retention information was directly used to support an increased value of the Vectra franchise when we negotiated the sale of the bank.

Gary Judd
Founder
Vectra Banking Corporation

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I am happy to provide you with feedback regarding O’Connell Consulting Group. I retained their services at Citywide Banks when I was SVP, Marketing. Citywide Banks is a $1billion dollar bank with 13 Denver area locations.Several years ago we hired Lauren to provide competitive data and analysis to support a deposit account restructuring project. The larger project was focused on product parameters/design and competitive pricing. Ultimately we reduced the number of checking accounts we offered, we revised some of the minimum balance requirements, the monthly and per item fees, and we proposed, to ALCO, a restructuring of our money market tiers (to reduce interest expense and be more competitive). We increased fees by adopting a “mid-market” pricing strategy and also consolidated several accounts which improved our sales process and new-customer satisfaction. The most significant outcomes of the project were 1) simplified sales process, 2) increased customer satisfaction and, 3) improved fee income (we also reduced compliance training and expense – always a priority!).

Lauren and her team were integral to the project’s success. They gathered and provided analysis of the competitive data which was one of three key elements in our analysis. The O’Connell Group added significant value to the business deposit product portion of our analysis because they were very resourceful in getting the ‘difficult-to-get information’ we needed from competitor banks. Their output was easy to interpret and ready for presentation as back-up data for our recommendations to Senior Management.

We worked directly with Lauren. She is a strategic thinker who helped us refine the scope of the project up front. She had a good understanding of our goals. She delivered on time and kept us informed of project status along the way. Overall – the service was excellent.

The O’Connell Group’s greatest strength is their combined years of banking experience (especially on the retail side) and the resulting ‘big-picture’ perspective. Lauren has a strong sense of business profitability needs, the sales process and the customer/market perspective at the same time.

I would definitely use their services again in the future.

Please do not hesitate to call me if you need additional information.

Jan Weber
Bickerstaff Associates, Inc.
Oil & Gas Properties
720-278-4436

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Lauren O’Connell brings a wealth of talent and experience along with a consulting style that is professional and relaxed. Lauren supports me and my firm in brand development and marketing strategy, and her insight and taste have been huge assets for our unique financial service business. I knew within minutes of meeting Lauren that she really “gets it” and I look forward to my time with her each time we meet. Our executive management team also accepted her immediately as she deftly demonstrated her expertise in her confident, yet humble, manner.

Jill Johnson
Director of Marketing
Central Bancorp

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Premier Bank engaged O’Connell Consulting Group Inc. for several projects. Ms. O’Connell has provided exceptional service and successful engagements every time.Our first engagement was a public relations project. Ms. O’Connell gave us valuable insight into how to communicate with our customers, employees and the media. She also provided us with all of the material needed.

Ms. O’Connell also assisted the bank with a deposit gathering plan in 2008. She helped the bank to define our goals and a plan to achieve them. Her knowledge of the banking industry made her very effective in designing and implementing a plan that would work.

I would recommend Ms. O’Connell as a professional that can help bankers to address the many difficult business issues we face now.

Donna M. Johnson
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Premier Bank

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The O’Connell Consulting Group managed a communications project for our bank that was very important and sensitive in terms of how it was communicated to our employees and customers, as well as the media. We were so pleased with how well they teamed up with us, integrating their tools and knowledge with our culture and market. They also carefully managed the project and process, keeping us on track and making sure everyone was prepared and trained with the right message delivered at the right time.

Pamela Jenkins
Vice President
Castle Rock Bank

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I also wanted to thank you for your presentation format of the board materials yesterday — we were able to accomplish so much in a very short period of time due to all of your hard work preparing for our meeting. As a result, our discussion was focused, our time spent efficiently and our goals accomplished with time to spare

Stephanie Bluher
Founder and CO
CHVB

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O’Connell Consulting Group prepared my bank to effectively address a communication challenge we faced. Working closely with our management team, they identified the many different stakeholders of our bank and designed an effective communication plan for each group to address their concerns in the most effective manner. We were also coached on how to work with the media. With their guidance, our management and staff were trained to handle customer, media and community inquiries with confidence and integrity. We also appreciated their professional approach and their prompt attention to our needs.

Tom Chinnock
CEO
Advantage Bank

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We recently engaged the O’Connell Consulting Group to help us with our communication needs. They were responsive to our concerns, providing the appropriate materials to inform our employees and prepare them for potential questions and concerns from customers, as well as others in the community. They also provided guidance on preparing for possible media inquiries. We were very pleased with the level of service and quick turnaround we received and with their support; we were confident and well prepared.

Bob Fenton
CFO, COO
Solera National Bank

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Our bank engaged with Lauren and Ellen to guide us through a public relations project during a challenging time for our company. With the expertise, experience and knowledge of how to prepare us for potentially negative news, O’Connell Consulting gave us the tools necessary to communicate with our key stakeholders – namely, the board of directors, staff, clients, the public and the media. We were thoroughly prepared and confident in our ability to answer any questions or concerns brought to us by these stakeholders. In the end, the news was met without any significant detriment to the bank and we were able to “tell our story” in our words; focusing on who we are, what our philosophy is and how a community bank is navigating through the current recession.I would highly recommend Lauren and her team to assist any bank in these challenging times.

Amy Minash
Vice President – Marketing
Colorado Capital Bank

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I worked closely with Lauren when I started the Private Banking department at Vectra Bank. We worked together to craft our messages, brochures and collateral materials to represent Private Banking as part of the Vectra brand yet positioned to attract a more affluent, higher touch market. I was particularly impressed with Lauren’s collaborative approach, melding my vision and her communications expertise. Our materials exceeded my expectations and made a huge difference when we were competing with the big banks for clients.

Jan Chase
Senior Vice President
Wells Fargo Private Banking

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My bank worked with the O’Connell Consulting Group to assist with communication during the recent recession as it affected the perception of banking in general and this bank in particular. They were thorough in their research and effective in preparing all bank personnel to confidently understand and answer the hard questions being asked by the public.

Tom Havens
President
Rocky Mountain Bank & Trust

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Working with O’Connell Consulting was a tremendous benefit to our financial institution. Lauren understood what we were attempting to accomplish and proactively guided us to a comprehensive and customized solution that supported our relationship management and business development needs via targeted marketing communication.

David Starck
VP of Marketing & Communications
Red Rocks Credit Union

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Lauren was a significant contributor to Vectra Bank Colorado’s successful launch, and eventual growth and profitability, leading to one of Colorado’s most successful public offerings in the past 20 years. Her hands-on management of the marketing/service quality functions with bank leaders in both the commercial and retail operations helped ensure a successful bank launch against far bigger competitors. She demonstrated an ability to quickly understand the key business objectives and effectively apply techniques and concepts honed at larger marketing organizations. These included direct marketing and customer segment profitability programs that enabled Vectra Bank to consistently improve its growth and profit margins.

Bob Barton
CEO
Altaquest Performance

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Small Business Owners/Not for Profits

When a growing company needs marketing help, it’s hard to know who to trust. We had a great experience with the O’Connell Consulting Group. They had all the right instincts in managing our project, which included branding, web development and marketing materials. They managed with a strong hand, yet were resilient when we felt strongly about something. They maintained command of the big picture and details, never losing sight of the forest or the trees. We were very pleased and would recommend them enthusiastically.

Stu Perlmeter
CEO
1st Resource

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It is with great pleasure that I share my experience working with Lauren. Over the last three years, Lauren has been the driving force behind multiple successful initiatives within SKLD involving branding, market analysis, strategic planning, and sales and management training. Lauren combines a wealth of marketing knowledge, with exceptional management skills and experience to provide a complete consulting package to any industry. She is extremely intelligent, energetic, focused, and best of all, an absolute pleasure to work with.

David A. Floyd
President
SKLD Title Services, Inc.

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I’ve known Lauren O’Connell for many years and have followed her career through Citicorp Retail Services, Vectra Bank, where she was an Executive Vice President and a customer of ours to G.A. Wright Marketing, Inc. where I recruited her to be our Vice President of Marketing and provide her marketing expertise to our clients.Lauren is one of the most effective strategic marketers I know. She will take you from where you are now to where you want to be by the shortest possible route, and you’ll have fun getting there. An expert in direct marketing as well, Lauren knows what to say to the right customers and prospects to motivate them to respond.

She is very hard working, thoughtful and completely forthright. I have a great deal of respect for her integrity. I could always depend upon her to give me an objective view of any problem and advice concerning its resolution.

I would be glad to answer any questions you might have. My office phone number is 303-333-4453.

Gary Wright
CEO
GA Wright, Marketing Inc.

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Lauren O’Connell leads successful marketing projects with both a focus on sound strategic direction and a dedication to practical results. She operates with humor and candor, and a real commitment to collaboration. I learned through more than eight years of working with Lauren that she is an innovative marketer who seeks out new concepts and approaches, but not at the expense of great outcomes. The true payoff in working with Lauren is her drive to deliver programs that work – to engage customers, introduce new products, or communicate a company initiative. With Lauren O’Connell, you’re not investing in a marketing program, you’re investing in results.

Molly Bowler
President
Bowler Communications

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I have worked with Lauren O’Connell for many years. I have the highest regard for her professional abilities. Lauren’s extensive background in both the financial and marketing industries make her one of the premier players in her field. Her education and career successes combine to put her in a very elite class. In the many projects and interactions I have had with Lauren over the years, she has always demonstrated a very high degree of innovation with a true emphasis on marketing ROI. I recommend her without reservation.

Bill Roth
COO
Mount Saint Vincent Home

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Working with Lauren while I was at Project Angel Heart was a true pleasure. It is rare to find a professional that can understand the unique needs of a non-profit organization to attach a human element to everything we do while focusing directly at how we can improve our bottom line. With the vast competition for the donated dollar Lauren suggested multi layer options to improve each area of giving we wanted to focus on. Most importantly Lauren suggested specific and detailed actions so that we could put the plan into action immediately.

Robb Pike
Director of Development

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Lauren’s exceptional experience in all phases of marketing and strategy was invaluable as a resource while we worked together at G.A. Wright. Especially, her ability to interpret client needs and craft effective, thoughtful, strategies to drive client revenues. Personable and professional always, she is a major influence in client success.

Patrick Surrena, CBC
Chief Experience Officer, Principal
The Hanson Group

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Lauren is indeed a true professional…she listens, she understands, and then she makes things happen. Her experience and knowledge allow her to create real life solutions that make sense, are practical, innovative, and work! Lauren has a no-nonsense yet creative approach to creating marketing solutions that generate positive, lasting results.

Luanne Reimer
Marketing Specialty Inc.