Express your brand, internally and externally

We’ve all heard of “company branding” but what does that really mean for community banks? In a highly competitive environment, it’s about more than “we’re here to serve our communities.” It’s about setting your bank apart: What makes you unique? What are your bank’s values? How do you meet your overall mission? [Continue]

Wealth management marketing: From ‘Secondhand Rose’ to ‘It Girl’

Who knew that a line of business which doesn’t have mass market appeal and has a sales cycle that’s measured in years, would be on a lot of bank marketing plans for 2021?! It’s true. After decades of writing yawn-inducing brochures with exhaustive definitions of services like testamentary trusts, wealth management is being recognized as a low-capital-requirement, higher-than-average ROE banking division worth actively pursuing.  [Continue]

Apples-to-apples comparisons are less fruitful these days

To say banking is competitive today is a revelation as surprising as acknowledging that the Pope is Catholic. So why, then, are we still measuring success relative to a peer group that includes only banks that look like we do, act like we do, and operate in the same geography we’re in? I’m not saying that traditional peer comparisons are wrong. I’m saying they’re insufficient. As a marketer, acting only on traditional apples-to-apples numbers can lull us into a false sense of security and a plausible excuse to forgo proactive urgency. [Continue]

How to field a marketing team in 2021 and beyond

Your customers are comparing your mobile banking app experience to shopping on Amazon. Your CEO wants a digital transformation plan up and rolling. Now. And your lenders want Wave 3 PPP communication support, a spring mortgage campaign, and a treasury management video by noon tomorrow. While just about every facet of banking has been disrupted in the last five years, the resources needed to support these changes are in serious need of inspection. [Continue]

What’s your brand plan, Stan?

Managing and curating your bank’s brand has always required discipline, vision and creativity. Today, industry disruption and COVID-19 have added a new mandatory: Relevance. [Continue]

The language of gratitude wields great power

Many of you operate family-owned banks. How might personal notes of gratitude play into prospecting for new business? Imagine a young couple in town who recently closed on a mortgage receiving an email from your president reflecting on the excitement he or she felt when they had closed on their first home. Could such a personal note offer a word of caution borne of experience? Imagine the impact of such a personalized communication from a new friend at the bank. [Continue]

Define your target market to stretch your marketing budget

Many bank marketers went into 2020 with flat year-over-year budgets but were expected to produce greater results than in years past. Then the pandemic came, pushing the need for digital transformation to the forefront and compelling executives to reallocate marketing budgets to support critical digital enhancements. [Continue]

Banking expectations of different generations

Financial services are in the unique position of being relevant and significant across all generations. No age group will outgrow the need for some form of banking, but what they expect of institutions differs. Here’s a closer look at the four primary generations in today’s market and what their banking expectations are. [Continue]

Turn PPP borrowers into core customers

Thousands of lenders across the country have loaned more than $230 billion to small businesses through the Paycheck Protection Program. While many banks focused on serving existing customers, perhaps equally as many attracted new customers. If your bank has acquired new customers through PPP, now is the time to solidify these relationships. [Continue]