Tag Archives: Baltimore Banks

One of Our Oldest Traditions – THE SEEDS ARE IN!

Those that have been with us for any length of time know that the beginning of spring means it is Seed Time. Customers young and old (and anywhere in between) are invited to take a free packet or two from our display when they come into the branch, bring them home, and plant a new selection of flowers in your garden (or perhaps it can be the first selection in a brand new garden that you or your children are starting).

The seed tradition at Midstate has been in place for decades, before even our own Miss Kitty’s first day at the bank.  Why seeds of all things? Well, there are a number of reasons. On a broad scale, community banks and rural America have always been tied throughout history.  In the past, farmers could take out loans knowing the money they were paying back would help build the community that could eventually buy their products. Even today, community banks across the country have shown a great understanding of the agriculture industry and the long-term benefits they can provide. Approximately 75% of all commercial bank agriculture loans are from community banks with assets under $10 billion (with nearly 60 percent of those being from community banks with under $1 billion in assets).

More specifically though, our main reason for distributing seeds is just another way we try to give back to the community. We love Baltimore and have quite literally evolved with the city since our inception more than 12 decades ago. So, we want to do everything we can to keep the community thriving in our own way. Obviously, our professional services are our main offering, but we also like to supplement that with a personal touch, such as continuing a tradition to help encourage local gardeners in the area.

So take a minute to come visit us at the bank and participate in one of our oldest traditions. It is the perfect way to welcome in spring.

 

 

The Midstate Bulletin Board Blog: March 22, 1950

March 22, 1950. Why is that day so important?

Well, just a few days earlier, the Periodic Table’s 98th element was founded at University of California at Berkley (they named it Californium); the first Volkswagen Type 2 rolled off the assembly line (we know it better as the Volkswagen Bus); and the Diner’s Club Card was used for the first time (known in the credit card industry as the “first supper”).

But on that day, a young woman named Kitty Gerling first started at a community bank in Baltimore that had been around since 1884.

62 years later:

  • There are now 118 elements on the Periodic Table.
  • The Volkswagen Bus is considered a cult classic (to the point that if you see one – whether it is in a driveway or on a highway – you point it out to whomever you are with).
  • Diner’s Club International is now in 200 countries and 70 different currencies.

And, Kitty Gerling, affectionately called Miss Kitty by all that know her, is still with Midstate Federal (now in its 129th year), and celebrating her anniversary with a beautiful cake.

Miss Kitty’s anniversary brings up a larger point about the efforts of community banks. A bank like Midstate, which has been dedicated to linking itself to the Baltimore community since it first opened, doesn’t just talk about being part of the community. It is an institution that understands that being part of the community mandates certain responsibilities, such as continuity. Larger banks may do it through a mascot or spokesperson. Midstate chooses to do it via someone that has worked at every level of the bank and has first-hand stories to share of its history.

62 years. Things in the world have changed quite a bit, but at Midstate Federal, while the bank has evolved, there continues to be a level of consistency that very few organizations (much less banks) can offer its customers. We are proud that Miss Kitty continues to be part of our institution because she, in fact, is an institution herself.

Customers of the Midstate Federal Savings and Loan Association all know about our famous bulletin board, where local and industry news is shared. This blog will serve as our virtual bulletin board, so you can keep up when you don’t have a chance to visit us at the bank.

The Midstate Bulletin Board Blog: Turning America Saves Week into America Saves Year

February 19th kicked off America Saves Week for 2012, a national campaign to encourage individuals and families to save money and build personal wealth by providing free financial tools, savings services, advice and resources that help Americans from every income level take the steps needed to take charge of their finances and manage money more effectively.

The quote on the AmericaSaves.org website, the organization that is the catalyst for this annual event, that best states why this is such an important cause is:

“By inspiring a strong savings ethic in people, we can improve the financial health of our schools and businesses, our communities, and our nation.”

This initiative, and others like it such as the Feed the Pig initiative spurred by American Institute of CPAs (and their complementary Benjamin Bankes Facebook page), have the ability to educate on a broad level, but that alone can’t influence the change that needs to happen for Americans to be as prepared as they need to be financially.

Initiatives like this won’t be successful without participation from entities at the local level that individuals trust. For example, as a community bank, we see it as our goal to take the idea of teaching personal savings to the next level. Yes, we offer broad advice on saving and investing, both in person at our branch and our sites and pages online. However, because we have been located in Baltimore for more than 125 years, we know how to customize it for the residents of this great city. We know how our customers think as well as what makes sense and what doesn’t. We can give specific ideas that are practical based on everything from age to savings criteria to help you plan your savings strategy for the other 51 weeks of the year.

Customers of the Midstate Federal Savings and Loan Association all know about our famous bulletin board, where local and industry news is shared. This blog will serve as our virtual bulletin board, so you can keep up when you don’t have a chance to visit us at the bank.

The Midstate Bulletin Board Blog: To Our Social Media Connections

If you are reading this post (or have read the others on the Midstate Bulletin Board Blog), you are already using a form of social media, so there is a good chance you are also using Facebook and Twitter as well. If so, this post is for you.

Earlier this week, we published an article on our Twitter feed discussing best practices for banks hoping to be successful using social media. Now, in general, some financial institutions have to play by a different set of rules and regulations as it relates to communicating and sharing information (which is outlined by FINRA). However, when it comes to bank branches, there is more flexibility, and therefore, more of an opportunity to provide our customers with the information they would like to know from their bank.

 

The article provided some great ideas, and we pride ourselves in the fact that all of them are part of our social media philosophy (especially #4). The overarching theme revolved around the fact that the topics and tone that we post about should fit with the demographic of people that we expect to reach. But social media doesn’t need to be about GUESSING what you want to read about, it should be about KNOWING what you want to read about, and all we need for that to happen is some insight from you.

So, for those readers that have trusted Midstate Federal enough to safeguard your money, we want to hear from you on how we can use social media to best fit your needs. What type of news / facts can we share with you that is going to have you feeling informed and wanting to share with others? Would you like more community news? Information on interest rates? Or Contests? Or recipes from our own Miss Kitty?

Oh, and for those considering opening an account with Midstate Federal, well we would like to hear from you as well.

Social media from a business standpoint has come a long way over the past 5 years ago, but we take pride in the fact that we are a community bank that simply wants to reach out and better connect to our customers, and our pages on Facebook and Twitter are the perfect ways to do it. Don’t believe us, well just check us out.

Customers of the Midstate Federal Savings and Loan Association all know about our famous bulletin board, where local and industry news is shared. This blog will serve as our virtual bulletin board, so you can keep up when you don’t have a chance to visit us at the bank.