Viewers of the History Channel will receive a lesson in banking history as part of an arrangement between Bank of America and the network. Two-minute segments about Bank of America’s role in U.S. history will appear during the History Channel’s new show, America, the Story of Us.

America, The Story of Us, which airs each Sunday through May 31, is a 12-hour series that gives a comprehensive overview of American history, using computer-generated graphics and interviews with historians. According to, the mini-features show how Bank of America helped fund noteworthy projects such as the Golden Gate Bridge and the Erie Canal.

A Win-Win Situation

For Bank of America, the two-minute spots will provide the opportunity to deliver a very targeted message to a large audience. The fact that the extended commercials mesh with the overall U.S. history theme of the show could make these ads more successful than standard commercial spots.

For its part, the History Channel received sponsorship for the show from Bank of America. The network gave away a few minutes of its 12-hour run time and some prime ad space on its website, but received in return enough money to fund the large project. History Channel general manager Nancy Dubuc told the show cost “well into seven figures,” and according to BusinessWeek, the deal is worth $4 million.

Bank of America Working To Repair Image

The main reason Bank of America is in need of a public relations boost is the public’s lingering negative feelings toward big banks since the financial crisis.

The Economist reported Friday that 53% of Americans polled had an unfavorable opinion of Bank of America, compared to just 29% who had a favorable opinion. Bank of America fared better than Goldman Sachs (59% unfavorable) and AIG (59%), but not as well as JP Morgan (46%). Only 6% of Americans said they trusted major banks to fix the problems that caused the financial crisis.

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