text element presets not working

I'm working on an upfront/spirit site that I started before 1.x, learning the new features as I try to finish it. On the home page, I've got a number of text elements that should be large white text on a green background region. I've tried creating a preset to apply to all of them. The settings in the preset panel do nothing. I've tried this with new presets and pre-existing ones. In some cases, it seems that only selecting the text and formatting directly works, in others only adding to the additional CSS box.

I've transferred the site (which is on my laptop) to a web host and turned on support access. I notice the down arrow symbol in a button in the first green region (it's directly below the charity's logo) does not appear on the hosted version.

The preset I can't get to work is "White text banner" (and others). The one that does work is "White text on dark" and applies to the text block over the second photo from the top of the site but has no effect on new text elements.

I tried searching the WPMU site but found nothing that looked relevant for this problem. I hope you can point me to some suggestions. I'd really like to avoid doing this with CSS. It sort of defeats the purpose of using Upfront.