I get that CIT has been around for a long time and operates in financial services for small and medium businesses, but I hadn't been seeing ads for their online bank until recently.*
They literally named their consumer savings organization "CIT Bank." I can't see how this is good for them. It only creates confusion in the marketplace.
Even if drafting off of a bigger brand is their strategy (and not a very good one, by the way), it really doesn't pay to try to confuse themselves with Citibank. The Citi brand, of course, isn't particularly spotless.
Mostly, it feels sneaky and untrustworthy. Brands are a shorthand for trust, and few categories of businesses have a greater trust problem than banks today. By adopting and marketing a name so close to its much bigger rival, CIT has done itself a disservice.
* Apparently CIT Bank was started in 2000, although the ads forthe CDs only started recently. It's one thing to make CIT Bank a quiet, hidden institution that helps round out their service portfolio to SMBs. It's another to advertise it as a consumer service.
a closeup of the CIT Bank logo