FNBO Direct Maximizes YouTube to Kick Off Pay Yourself First Challenge: Consumers Share Savings Stories on YouTube for a Chance to Have Their Savings Matched and Win a Once in a Lifetime Getaway

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First National Bank of Omaha, member FDIC, a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska, Inc., the largest privately owned banking company in the United States, today announced its official Pay Yourself First Challenge on YouTube. The Challenge will follow five everyday people in their quest to save money and win by using the Pay Yourself First method. First National Bank's FNBO Direct Online Savings Account (OSA) will match, dollar-for-dollar (1), the amount each of the five finalists has saved at the end of the Challenge. The grand prize winner will also be whisked away to a luxurious spa destination to restore his or her personal balance (2).

FNBO Direct's consumer Challenge is designed to show the public how important it is to save, and that it can be done easily and conveniently online.

    Pay Yourself First means depositing your paycheck into an FNBO Direct OSA. When bills are due, you simply transfer just what you need from savings to your FNBO Direct Online BillPay account. Whatever's left over -- whether it's $25 or $500 -- stays in your OSA and earns an interest rate that is seven times higher than traditional saving accounts (3).

"In December, we asked consumers to change the way they think about saving money by automatically depositing their paychecks into online savings accounts, instead of traditional checking accounts," said Rajive Johri, president, First National Bank of Omaha. "But today, we're taking that challenge to the next level by launching an official contest so America can track the success of five individuals on a savings journey and learn valuable money saving tips along the way."

FNBO Direct has teamed up with Liz Pulliam Weston, the Internet's most-read personal finance columnist, to promote the bank's Pay Yourself First Challenge. She has written numerous books and columns about online banking as an effective and efficient savings tool. FNBO Direct believes that Weston's experience and perspective will bring an exciting element to this strategic marketing campaign.

"Saving money has become a lost art as America has increasingly become a consumption-based society," said Liz Pulliam Weston. "FNBO Direct's consumer Challenge is designed to show the public how important it is to save, and that it can be done easily and conveniently online."

It takes even more discipline in these difficult economic times to save money. FNBO Direct recognizes the hardship that comes with increasing costs for gas, food and other basic necessities. According to a Federal Reserve study, about 43 percent of U.S. families spend more than they earn. In February 2008 alone, consumer debt continued to grow as Americans tacked on nearly $5 billion in net new debt (Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 4/7/08). The main idea behind the Pay Yourself First Challenge is to deposit paychecks into an OSA, but the end goal is for consumers to see the value of growing their money through a disciplined approach to saving.

Are You Ready for the Challenge?

Starting today, May 6 until July 31, 2008, consumers can go to http://www.pyfchallenge.com and upload a one-minute video to YouTube about what they're saving for and how they're doing it -- or not doing it -- to win. Whatever the reason, FNBO Direct wants to hear about it. Individuals are encouraged to share a savings goal that's compelling, original and creative. FNBO Direct is looking for five contestants to go on a money-saving journey over six months. One challenger will win top prize and walk away with savings success and a once in a lifetime getaway (1).

The top five finalists chosen for the Challenge will embark on their savings journey, which will be documented real-time at http://www.pyfchallenge.com from October 2008 - April 2009. To review the Official Rules, including more information about the YouTube contest selection criteria, visit http://www.pyfchallenge.com/officialrules.

Restore Your Balance with a Spa Vacation

The grand prize winner and one guest will enjoy ultimate relaxation at one of the world's top spa destinations. After maxing out their savings goals, guests will be rewarded with a wealth of activities including luxurious spa treatments, fitness classes and outdoor adventures. Golf enthusiasts won't have to spend a lot of green to play a world-class course, and food connoisseurs will enjoy the rich cuisine and atmosphere of local restaurants. Hard work will definitely pay off for the grand prize winner, and one guest, as they restore balance during this all-expense paid vacation. (2)

The grand prize winner will be selected based on the following criteria:

-- Saved the most money during the Challenge -- based on percentage increase, rather than total dollar amount saved (50% of final score)

-- Adherence to contest requirements, including active participation in the Challenge activities such as blogging on http://www.pyfchallenge.com, and other promotional activities (25% of final score)

-- Vote by American public via a http://www.pyfchallenge.com poll that judges the challengers' saving skill level, including tactics for saving, ability to meet savings goal and sharing savings challenges and solutions with the Challenge community (25% of final score)

FNBO Direct will also award each of the five contestants with a cash prize, matching the amount that each individual has saved during the challenge, up to $5,000 each.

Multimedia Elements

-- View Pay Yourself First Challenge entry video http://www.pyfchallenge.com

-- For more information, and to enter YouTube contest, visit http://www.pyfchallenge.com

-- Visit FNBO Direct's del.icio.us page for more industry information about Online Savings Accounts: http://del.icio.us/FNBO_Direct

About FNBO Direct

FNBO Direct (http://www.fnbodirect.com) is an Internet bank that offers consumers innovative online banking products. FNBO Direct is part of First National Bank of Omaha, a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska, Inc. First National of Nebraska has grown into the largest privately owned banking company in the United States. First National and its affiliates have $21 billion in managed assets and more than 8,000 employee associates located in 35 states. Primary banking offices are located in Nebraska, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota and Texas.

1. FNBO Direct will match what each finalist saves, up to a maximum of $5,000 per finalist.

2. The Grand Prize winner will receive an all-expense paid vacation, worth up to $7,500.

3. The national APY for traditional savings is based on the Statement National Average published in the 2007 passbook/statement savings study located on bankrate.com at http://www.bankrate.com/brm/publ/passbk.asp?caret=2 as compared to our OSA rate as of 4/30/08.

Release Summary:

Now through July 31, 2008, consumers can go to http://www.pyfchallenge.com and upload a one-minute video to YouTube about what they're saving for and how they're doing it -- or not doing it -- to win.

Keyword Tags:

osa, save money, win, youtube, youtube contest, youtube video

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Kevin Langin
First National Bank of Omaha
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