The retail banking industry has an ever evolving marketing-intensity of its own, requiring its own set of innovative and efficient marketing solutions. As tactics multiply and advance, across both digital and what used to be called 'traditional' marketing efforts, all while the industry becomes more complex, marketers are left with more vehicles for reaching an audience than ever before, yet not enough hands on deck to manage.
Consolidation of the industry is a large driving force behind the need for marketing adaptation, as local banks are unified under the umbrella of larger regional and national brands seeking to gain market share through strategic acquisition. This trend in the banking industry presents a number of challenges with respect to marketing strategies.
When a merger or acquisition occurs, the branding effort becomes paramount. It’s not just a nice new sign on the front of a bank; it means anything where logos, slogans and more exist. Can you name a few? If not, we’ll give you a quick rundown...
- Lobby signage
- Post-its and other internally used collateral
- Accounting documents, checks and other forms
- HR & Training manuals
- Direct mail pieces
- Broadcast & Print ads
- Promotional giveaways such as stress balls, pens and mints
- Web & Social pages
- and many, many more
These are just a few! Walk into any bank in your area and start counting. Trust us, you don’t have enough fingers.
Corporate messaging, compliance, human resources paperwork, and other documents with legal and financial components require perfect branding and verbiage. If a prospective client walks into the bank and is handed a mortgage application with the wrong Company name, incorrect logo, or other outdated information, the brands suffers. That potential client may leave thinking “if a bank can’t keep track of its own branding, how is it going to take care of my money?”
The same challenges surround the brand control, quality, and delivery of marketing efforts across digital and physical channels. One channel worth detailing here is social, as this continues to require attention and relevance in increasing demand. According Capgemini's 2014 Retail Banking Report, 10% of Generation Y consumers with bank accounts have used social networks to communicate with their bank. This statistic wasn’t even included last year! As social media continues to garner mass adoption through popular platforms including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Instagram, among others, those in the banking industry should only expect this trend to continue. For this reason, it is important to control how the newly branded and previously existing banks handle their social platforms during consolidation. A bank unresponsive to its client over Twitter, sharing incorrect content over Facebook, or with an abandoned LinkedIn page, can lead the public to think the brand isn’t in touch with modern customer service.
Digital marketing efforts, such as e-mail marketing or display and banner advertisements, create a similar challenge for brands. When an organization has distributed sales groups spread out around the country, how do they manage how their corporate message is disseminated? E-mail campaigns require proofing from marketing teams, and execution in terms of delivery time and vehicle. Display ads need to be in high resolution, and tracking tactics need to be implemented in able to determine ROI.
So what can you do?
During consolidation, many banking executives are exploring partnerships with marketing services providers who they can rely upon for sustainable and scalable growth. Procurement, production, kitting, housing and fulfillment of traditional and digital marketing materials are expensive in both direct costs and indirect labor costs. Growing banks are outsourcing these efforts to third-party marketing solutions providers, and the results are starting to be touted publicly. In fact, a European Bank recently went this route with a strategic partner, which is expected to save over $247 million external spending, as it freed itself from marketing procurement and focused on its core consumer and commercial operations. Our own banking clients find this to be the case as well, as we can help them control their brand, improve consistency and speed to market, all while improving their total cost of spend by 10 - 20%.
As they grow, banks need to maintain a customer-centric approach. DataSource can help.
Our experience in working with growing bank brands to provide on-demand printing solutions, warehouse/kitting/fulfillment, traditional and digital asset management, a cost-effective procurement process, and more – all through a centralized, easily accessible technology that enables field users to customize, localize and produce multi-channel marketing collateral – has led Data-Source to become a highly visible and viable solution for growing banks. To learn more, please email us directly, firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 877.846.9120 and we can talk about a solution to Power Your Brand.