Short News Article (Print)

A compact account about a canny Amish farmer bears fruit

This story shows employees how HomeTowne Heritage’s expertise in farm loans gave it a head start in the race to persuade a skeptical agriculturist to change banks.

This pithy, fact-filled account of “How we got Mr. King to change banks and secure his loan with us,” (real title: “Amish Farmer Whittles Down List of Banks: Chooses HomeTowne Heritage”) in the May 2011 issue of National Penn Bancshare’s employee newsletter, National Penn UPDATE, stands out for the following reasons:

  1. It identifies by name the four banks HomeTowne Heritage beat out for the business.
  2. It also identifies the farmer who switched banks.
  3. It gives its employee readers the exact net worth of the farmer.
  4. It tells the reader exactly how the four competitor banks erred or came up short and fell by the wayside.
  5. It tells readers exactly how the HomeTowne Heritage house expert in Amish farm loans won the business (by giving the farmer a mixture of fixed- and variable-rate loans).
  6. It includes an extremely effective quote from the farmer about the winning competence of Heritage’s farm loan supervisor.
  7. The writing is devoid of flowery rhetoric, banker’s jargon, irrelevant background, elaborate windups, wordy “lessons learned”—it gives the facts, and those are enough. The story doesn’t waste a word.

All of this makes this short (350 words) article very readable and useful for HomeTowne Heritage Bank employees. The story is a model of compression and displays a wealth of practical detail that ensures its believability—and readability.

It also makes National Penn UPDATE the winner of the Best Short News Article (Print Publication) in Ragan’s Employee Communications Awards for 2011.

Read the full text of the article here.

Editor: Michael Reisman


View More Employee Communications Awards 2011 Winners.

Visit to learn more about awards opportunities.