Category Archives : Blog


7-Step Onboarding Checklist

First impressions are everything. Onboarding is the most important moment in a relationship with a customer. We get asked all the time how financial institutions can improve their onboarding. This onboarding checklist – slimmed down to the bare necessities from a Financial Brand list – will get you started.

Here are the most important things to do during the onboarding process. If you can check off each of these points then you’re well on your way to having one of the best onboarding strategies in the business.

Here’s the checklist in detail.

 7-Step Onboarding Checklist

full onboarding checklist

Keep these words in mind when outlining your onboarding strategy.

 


include onboarding checklistInclude Everyone

Onboarding isn’t something that should only be for new customers. If a current customer opens a new account with you, you should leverage that relationship. There’s never a bad time to show customers what makes your institution unique. Onboarding is your window of opportunity to do just that. Especially if a relationship has grown stagnant, be sure that you’re including all your customers – new and old – with some type of onboarding.

 

collect onboarding checklistCollect Insights

Your customers want to talk to you, so listen to them! Don’t be afraid to ask them for feedback or if their needs are being met. Collecting insights allows you to target customers with what they’re interested in. It’s extremely important to avoid pitching a product, but when you collect customers’ insights they’re open to speaking up about their financial needs. You don’t build a relationship by being the only one who talks. Listen to what customers are saying.

 

communicate onboarding checklistCommunicate Early

Don’t wait to say thanks. You should be at your most active in the first few days after you onboard someone. For example, sending a hand-written thank you postcard or note is a great way to communicate early on a personal level. It’s not something people expect, but something they will appreciate. Really make an effort to open communication channels with customers early on. Set the precedent that you care about your customers.

 

connect onboarding checklistConnect Often

Connect often without spamming customers. Make sure that when you connect it’s for an important reason. Try not to focus on products since customers learn to ignore that type of messaging. Set up a schedule for communication that allows you to connect often without alienating customers. They don’t need to hear from you everyday; just enough to keep in contact. Content can play a really important role for connecting with customers.

 

personalize onboarding checklistPersonalize Dialogue

Customers are individuals. Try to think beyond ‘one-size-fits-all’ communications. Leverage your data so that when you get in touch with a customer it’s about their specific needs. All it takes are little touches like using a customer’s name in an email, or mentioning how long they’ve been banking with you. Work with the information you have to single out customers as individuals.

 

engage onboarding checklistEngage Before Selling

The crux of engagement is something we call “teach to sell”. The idea is to avoid a product focus and provide customers with content that can help them save money and avoid mistakes. It’s paramount that customers see a direct benefit to engaging with you. When engagement comes first you are able to sell by not selling. Engaged customers ultimately represent a 23% increase to share of wallet and profitability (Gallup Research).

 

learn onboarding checklistLearn

Some say that the definition of insanity is repeating the same thing over and over, expecting different results. Try out different onboarding ideas to see what works and what doesn’t. Change what doesn’t work and learn from your mistakes. Rome wasn’t built in a day. You won’t flip a switch and suddenly have an onboarding process that’s perfect for your institution. It takes some work, but if you’re following these steps you’ll see the results.

 

We hope you found this onboarding checklist helpful! If you have a something to add that no onboarding strategy can be without then leave a comment!

Check out our next workshop for an in-depth look at onboarding!

 


Financial Content Wrap-up: Apple Pay and the Mobile Wallet Avalanche

apple payOne story has dominated the financial services industry this week. On Tuesday, Apple announced plans to team up with Mastercard, Visa and American Express (along with BofA, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Wells Fargo) to launch Apple Pay. Apple Pay is a mobile payment service that utilizes near-field communication.

Here’s how Apple Pay works. Near-field communication (NFC) between devices involves a whole lot of complicated electromagnetic induction and physics. For us laymen, it basically just lets your smartphone communicate with another NFC device when the two are nearby. For you big-city commuters, it’s kind of like a subway pass. You tap the pass against the reader on the gate and the gate opens. Different forms of this technology have been around for a long time, but it’s only now coming to the iPhone.

In addition to NFC capability, Apple Pay will also streamline payments at various merchants through apps. Check out the video from TechCrunch below for a few examples.

So what does this all mean right now? Not a whole lot. You’re probably thinking, “it isn’t too much of a hassle to swipe a credit card,” and you’re right – not to mention that only a few merchants in the US accept NFC.

Apple Pay is long-term initiative that’s part of a trend of technology companies getting more involved with financial institutions. Apple, Google, et al. want to be a part of how you pay for things.

Apple Pay (along with Google, Amazon, Paypal, etc.) is like a snowball that, one day soon, will start a mobile payment avalanche, especially as smartphones get cheaper and ever-closer to a 100% adoption rate. As of March, only about 17% of US smartphone users have made mobile payments. This tech is still in the early adoption phase.

As such, Apple’s relationships with the big card companies indicate little change to the status quo today. As consumer behavior changes and more merchants adopt NFC, services like Apple Pay will become a much bigger factor in our day-to-day transactions.

~~~

 Mobile Banking Conversion – Apple Pay’s Impact

We’ve reported in the past that mobile banking is growing rapidly. 15% of mobile banking users have abandoned Internet banking – they just don’t need that service because they can do everything on their phone.

The way we think about money and transactions is changing. 35% of Millennials check their balance every day. Apple Pay reinforces this behavior. People are able to be more engaged with their finances.

It’s vital that financial institutions understand these trends. These services are going to have a serious impact in the next few years.

~~~

For ideas on how financial institutions can innovate on mobile, join our next workshop!


Big Decisions Still Happen in the Branch

Branch Experience Evolution - via Wikicommons user: MandrichondriaBranches are evolving alongside the burgeoning digital bank experience. They’re in a transitional period, climbing out of the primordial ooze and standing on their feet. The ABA Banking Journal highlights how some banks are rethinking the branch experience with a “laser-like emphasis on cross-selling”.

The Mighty Morphin’ Branch Experience

[Branches will evolve] away from focusing on the low-value, day-to-day transactions at the teller window, to a place where customers can get the one thing they can’t get anywhere else: face-to-face interaction with a person.

 

Branches’ once-predicted demise assumed they wouldn’t adjust to cater to the changing needs and preferences of customers enamored with all sorts of digital channels, as well as the economies and efficiencies brought by electronic systems that banks themselves embraced.

But that assumption failed to recognize that even the most gadget-addicted customer still goes into stores. At times, such customers still want to meet eyeball-to-eyeball with human beings to talk about big decisions, to get financial advice, to apply for business loans, and even to clear up some error or misstep by the bank. [Emphasis mine -Ed.]

 

“The role of the branch in the future is really going to become more of a customer service advice center,” says Sean Keathley, president, Adrenaline, the experience design agency recently spun off from NewGround. “The role of the branch is a place for human connection. That’s what can’t happen in the other channels.”

In short, when there’s a big decision to be made, people are at the branch. You don’t order a mortgage online through Amazon, so to speak.

The branch should be used in service of important events in customers’ lives. Don’t ask your customers to come all the way down to your branch just for a day-to-day transaction. Day-to-day, low impact decisions should move to digital spaces while big decisions continue to happen face-to-face.

Banks need to change how the branch is perceived, refiguring its image around technology, passionate people and appointments.

Technology – Automated Experiences

Most banks use tellers to handle boring day-to-day transactions. Typically this costs about 22 times as much as a digital transaction! Branch employees should be there to engage customers and help with specific needs while kiosks or ATMs expedite simple processes.

An unlikely analog can be found in grocery stores. Many grocery stores offer self-checkout where customers scan, bag and pay for items on their own. The store gets more open checkout lanes operating at a reduced cost.

Simple transactions should be moved to digital as much as possible. However, the human element of the branch should absolutely not be eliminated. When the customer has a need there should be someone knowledgeable who can help.

Passionate People – Personal Experiences

The #1 differentiator of physical branches is that they’ve got people in them. Banks need to leverage these face-to-face interactions while including a digital component.

Think Apple Store. You go in, you can mess around with an iPad. If you need help there’s someone there. Apple has created this perception that their employees know a lot and can help. That’s what banks need to do.

Employees should be able to engage the people who have come all the way down to the branch. A customer should come to the branch knowing that someone is going to help them. Not with a basic transaction, with something more important. Passion drives positive branch experiences.

Appointments – Relevant Experiences

With more digitization and a refined human element in the branch, banks need to make branch appointments a priority.

As the ABA Banking Journal notes, customers want to meet “eyeball-to-eyeball” when they’re facing an important decision. Technology is an “enabler” allowing us to connect in new ways. Digital experiences should lead people towards appointments where they can get help from passionate people.

By targeting big, important life events, people will come to you to learn and talk. Everyone’s looking for answers and most don’t want a product offer upfront.

All of us are constantly assailed with different rates and offers, each with a novel-length asterisk. Banks should start off by letting their passion show. People buy from answer providers. The most important thing you can tell you customers is “we can help”. That’s what will drive in-branch appointments.

The Reimagined Branch

These ideas won’t sound so futuristic for long. Chase Bank, for one, has already begun moving in this direction. As an industry, we need to rethink the branch. It should be leaner, helping digital to do what digital does great, while maintaining face-to-face engagement with customers around the issues and products that are important and relevant to them.

Tune in for a demo of an evolved branch experience!


Financial Content Wrap-up: All Aboard for Onboarding at Banks

All Aboard for Onboarding at Banks - via Wikicommons user Yaohua2000Our white paper, “Onboarding: A Setup for Sales”, recently hit a record number of downloads! To celebrate, this week’s Financial Content Wrap-up brings you a cornucopia of onboarding tactics, strategies and tips. Check out what industry luminaries have to say about onboarding at banks and at large.

21 Tips For Onboarding at Banks

These tips from The Financial Brand have a lot in common with what we recommend to our clients. Two of our favorites are included below, but you should check out the full list here.

Banks should be listening to everyone and personalizing for everyone. These things are especially important as day-to-day banking continues to go digital. Simply asking your customers what their needs are right now is a great way to 1) hear what they’re thinking and 2) follow up with personalization. If you learn during onboarding that a customer is saving for a house you can subsequently target them with relevant, personalized info. If you’re only targeting by demographics you’re playing a guessing game.

The key to personalization is not to send people direct ads, but relevant content. People don’t like to be sold to. You need to supply them with something more than an ad. Give them tips on saving for a home, or paying for college; Teach them how to set up a monthly budget; Base what you send them around their personal needs.

If you’re being truly personable, trust should come before the sale.

4. Collect Insights from Day One

The ability to personalize communications and provide targeted solutions is based on the amount of demographic, behavioral and social insights you can collect. The collection of insight doesn’t stop at the new accounts desk, but should continue during the entire onboarding process…

 

The challenge is to balance the desire for collecting more insight either in person or through digital channels with the need to simplify the account opening process for an enhanced customer experience. A simplification strategy that is proving effective for some organizations is the integration of smartphone/tablet camera functionality to capture primary data and insight both in the branch and as part of digital account opening.

7. Personalize Dialogue

Each communication must reflect where the new customer is in their financial lifecycle with your organization. Show the consumer you know them and understand their needs. Eventually, the goal is to mine the data on the customer to generate marketing messages that are customer (as opposed to profile) specific.

 

Just as important as remembering the demographics and product ownership of the customer, it is important to build a communication channel strategy for each consumer based on the channels they use and respond to best. By leveraging data from all sources, content can be developed based on needs, channels and devices.

 ~~~

Content Experiments

You’ll notice a recurring theme here. PERSONALIZE!

You don’t need to take my word, or Financial Brand’s word, or even Content Marketing Institute’s word about the effectiveness of personalization. Ask yourself – if you’re in no way interested in college at this point in your life, how valued would you feel as a customer if your bank sent you a bunch of ads for student loans?

Onboarding’s the time to start personalizing because customers are most-excited to engage with your brand. It’s the honeymoon period.

Check CMI’s full post here.

6. Strive to achieve true personalization

At Refinery29, Lee says, “All these A/B testing things are trying to get us closer to understanding what people are interested in, but to truly have the one-to-one marketing is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.” The more content you test across more channels, the more you can begin to personalize each individual client’s or prospect’s experience with your business — the emails they will receive, the links they will see first, the eBooks they should be offered. It is a difficult goal to achieve, but testing gets us closer to realizing it every day.

7. Understand that our jobs start after we publish

If we believe our jobs are over when we have created a piece of content, we are in huge trouble. Publishing something is only the beginning. For content to truly make a difference, we have to constantly evolve what we do with it after it is sent out there. Today, it’s easy to test how, when, and where we can promote our content most effectively and efficiently — and to do it in real time. The lessons learned about which promotions drove not just the most traffic but also the most conversions for a given piece of content will often translate to other pieces down the road. Remember: You’re not just testing ideas and concepts, you’re testing channels and delivery mechanisms, too.

~~~

Ideas for Digital Onboarding

Your can reach customers with personalized content through a ton of different channels. During onboarding you’ve already got the customer’s curiosity. You just need to capture their attention to keep them engaged.

For banks and credit unions, the onboarding process is a critical moment to retain your customers’ interest. They’ve heard what you have to say, they understand what you’re offering and they’ve decided to open an account with you. You’ve worked hard to gain your customer’s attention. Hold on to it with an effective onboarding process.

When it comes to communicating with a new client, “[o]ne contact and one channel is never enough,” says The Financial Brand’s Jim Marous.

 

Your new customer – scratch that, everyone – is on multiple digital channels. Everyone checks their email, browses on their phone, is on at least one social network.* Moreover, people check out your website frequently to manage their account or look for products. Why wouldn’t you reach out to them through these channels to keep them engaged?

 ~~~

Boost Channel Engagement


For more ideas about onboarding at banks, check out our next workshop!


Truebridge Announces Content “Quick Find” Features

Boston, MA — Truebridge, premier content marketing provider to banks and credit unions, is excited to announce two new “quick find” features. The new features are designed to improve their client’s customer experience – making it easier and faster for customers to find the exact content and sales representative they need, when they need it.

More and more financial institutions are realizing that providing content builds emotional engagement, leading to more profitable and loyal customers. “People are five times more likely to buy when education comes first”, says Stewart Rose, President/C.E.O of Truebridge. “If the financial institution is the resource their customers go to for that guidance, they are the first in place to provide the associated product solutions.”

“As people react to various events in their lives, they need to have the ability to make decisions quickly”, says Rose. With these new features, the customer in a hurry will not need to slog through a content library. The “Quick Find: Life Event” and “Quick Find: Profile” features do the searching for them, in an efficient and intuitive way.

With “Quick Find: Life Event” a customer simply clicks on the life event(s) important to them and it automatically brings up relevant content. The “Quick Find Profile” finds relevant content in another manner. Customers simply answer six non-intrusive yes/no questions.  The system automatically generates content that is likely to be helpful.

These new tools can be delivered through branch and digital channels, making them more engaging and sources of sales leads.  In the branches, it becomes a simple step to add to the onboarding and account servicing process.  As far as digital channels, customers can access these tools directly from the website, email, social and mobile.

 

About Truebridge, INC: Truebridge, a fourteen-year-old content marketing company that caters to financial institutions, is a leading provider of innovative marketing solutions designed to attract, engage and educate a 21st century audience.

Interested in hearing more? Get in touch with Truebridge today or click here to see how it works!

PDF

 


How Banks Can Be Proactive About the Home Depot Data Breach

home depot data breach construction

[UPDATE: Home Depot has since confirmed the data breach -Ed.]

Home Depot confirmed on Tuesday that they’re investigating the possibility of a data breach at almost 2,000 locations. While I want to stress that a breach has not yet been confirmed, the possibility has a lot of people concerned. A Home Depot data breach doesn’t sound too crazy given that Target has had a similar issue recently.

Whether or not a data breach occurred, the story’s out there and people are going to be looking for answers to be sure that their data is safe. Customers will be coming to their bank for help, after all it’s “the banks who see suspicious activity before anyone else”.

Navigating the Home Depot Data Breach

Customers all have one simple question. “Is my information safe?” Unfortunately, the answer’s pretty complicated. Banks need to communicate what the signs of identity theft are and how customers can remain vigilant and protected.

While the call center might be lighting up at a time like this, many people are looking for answers online. The Millennial mindset especially looks online first. A bank’s website should have content that addresses the steps customers need to take in the event of a data breach.

At a bare and absolute minimum, the bank should make it clear on their website that customers can call them to get help. That recourse might seem obvious, but it lets customers know that the bank is there for them and aware of the issues they’re facing.

However, a stronger solution that will build better ties with customers is to have a page or two of content with tips that can help. The bank should explain what signs of data theft look like. For example, missing bills or strange withdrawals. Some people might need help with credit reports – do they know they can get a free one every year? People are searching for this type of content.

Banks can give customers the information they need, written out clearly and concisely in a way that’s easy to access.

Breach Happens

The Home Depot data breach will not be the last cyber attack we hear about. Sooner or later another big company will be in the news. It’s the role of the bank to help alleviate customers’ fear. Provide content to give customers the tools they need to make sure their data is safe.

For more tips on being a content provider customers trust, check out our next workshop!


How to Own Your Brand’s Image with a 1 Stop Financial Resource Center

One stop financial resource center - via Wikicommons user SilsorSo you want to be a thought leader and own your brand’s image? You need to have something important to say and you need to be active in saying it. A financial resource center is paramount to accomplishing this.

Here’s a great example why that’s so: I haven’t met a financial institution yet who didn’t give back to their community in some way. In addition to educating their customers, each and every one offers a scholarship or two, or donates to a charity, or sponsors local events. However, most aren’t very effective at communicating what they’ve done.

The tendency seems to be “one and done” tweets or blog posts about an accomplishment – sometimes they even hide this stuff away in a PDF! Content delivery through a financial resource center is the key to building a brand that can compete digitally. A financial resource center will help employ the tools that can organize your brand’s image effectively.

Britt Klontz from the Content Marketing Institute sums it up:

Essentially, a resource center is a site within a site, where all of your content is organized. The necessity of having one has only arisen relatively recently with the evolution of content marketing from a single effort here and there to a constant supply of blog posts, videos, podcasts, eBooks, SlideShares, and more. Without a resource center, all of this wonderful content can become buried on a blog’s archives or get dispersed across several sections of a company’s site. This makes it very difficult for consumers to find, and it essentially means that a piece of content’s usefulness will continually decline as it ages, as it simply won’t be findable over the long term.

Here’s a slice of what a resource center can look like:

financial resource centerIt’s home to articles and info that help customers save money and avoid mistakes. It goes right on your website and helps build your brand as an “answer provider”.

The benefits extend beyond giving your customers easy access to information that can make a difference. A resource center keeps you from getting overwhelmed by your own content, building your image in an organized way.

When you use a resource center you can plan out your content strategy much more effectively. College application time? Promote content from your resource center around that topic. Tax time? Promote it!

A financial resource center helps with one of the biggest challenges that marketers are facing today; They aren’t being heard. Resource centers allow for more consistent communication about the issues that are relevant to customers, without blasting them ad after ad for products they aren’t looking for right now.

Getting started on your own is easy.

1) Pop open Excel and create a list of all your content.

  • “Content” means (more or less) anything that isn’t a direct ad, e.g. a blog post with money saving tips, an infographic about retirement.

2) Organize content by three variables.

  • Topic – What is the content about? E.g. Debt management, buying a home, etc. (Tip! File non-financial topics under “Miscellaneous”, it’s always OK to post goofy things or recipes.)
  • Form – Is the content a blog? An image? A video?
  • Function – What is the goal of the content? Is it driving leads? Is it promoting an event?

3) Schedule

  • Plan out a Content Calendar that covers all your topics.
  • Post regularly and address the needs of different audience members.

Those are just the first steps. You’ll also need to get a resource page on your website, categorized so that customers can easily and intuitively navigate your content. This will put you on the path to clearer communication with your customers; You’ll be able to help more of them with more of their needs.

Learn how to make content a core part of your marketing strategy, sign up for our next workshop!

 


Financial Content Wrap-up: Great Recession Aftershocks

The Great Recession was six years ago, but consumer confidence is still shaken – understandably so, they call it “great” for a reason. Content and digital media move fast – technology seems like it changes almost every other day – but a bad impression or negative brand image can last for years and years. Financial institutions across the country are still recovering in this respect. Whether Community or Nationwide Bank, now is the time to establish your brand as a trusted resource.

Great Recession Aftershocks Still Give Us the Shakes

great recession lawsuit

17 billion big ones, semolians, smackeroos, greenbacks…

Bank of America is settling for $17 billion in a federal lawsuit based on their activities prior to the Great Recession. To say nothing of a slow legal system, even after years have passed people remember our latest recession quite well. The market has recovered, though it’s safe to say that our mass-psychology, with-respect-to apprehension towards banking, hasn’t.

Case in point: Credit unions nationwide have continued to make strides increasing share of wallet based on marketing their differences from banks.

Bank of America has reached a record settlement of nearly $17 billion to resolve an investigation into its role in the sale of mortgage-backed securities before the 2008 financial crisis, officials directly familiar with the matter said Wednesday.

One of the officials, who spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the announcement isn’t scheduled until Thursday at the earliest, said the bank will pay $9.65 billion in cash and provide consumer relief valued at $7 billion.

The deal is the largest settlement arising from the economic meltdown in which millions of Americans lost their homes to foreclosure. (via Associated Press)

Five Content Marketing Pitfalls

If there’s one big thing we stress to our clients about their content it’s: Don’t let it sit there! Content needs attention like a plant needs water. Twitter, Facebook, blogs and emails: Get your content in front of people!

These five pitfalls might be common, but they’re easy to remedy. Here are two that caught our eye.

When users find your content you should make it easy for them to connect with an actual person. This is a simple design principle that creates a great user experience. Users shouldn’t have to sift through a ton of menus to connect with someone who can help. Calls to action should be apparent, but not invasive or pestering.

If your bank is blogging, always keep the “long tail” in the back of your mind. A long tail is a statistical principle that says you’ll a lot of views when you first post, but over time a trickle of views will really add up. For a blogger this means that a blog post has a long life span. Assess the channels that you promote your blogs on. If you’re only promoting a blog on the day it’s published you could be doing a lot more to get it in front of people.

3 Things To Know About Millennials’ Banking Behavior

Millennials have next to no financial education. They look to their financial institution to provide education. They also check their balance a lot. How does this all correlate? If you can provide answers – reaching Millennials where they are (i.e. online) – you’ll be able to increase your share of wallet.

As the financial choices of Millennials begin to have a stronger effect in the market, banks need the ability to engage these customers.

An essential part of your digital marketing strategy NEEDS to provide materials that “don’t try to sell”. Not only because Millennials are looking to their financial institution to help them out with financial education, but your other customers are too.

The term “Millennial” is sometimes used in a way that misses the point. It can be understood less as a demographic and more as a conceit about expectations of connectivity. Your youngest customers are hyper-connected and technology-dependent. If they can’t find the answers they need through you, they’ll go somewhere else. Older demographics are adopting these traits as well. You don’t need the proverbial “rapping grandma” to reach Millennials. You can employ a strategy that reaches everyone.

About the Truebridge Content Marketing System

 

For more ideas on building share of wallet with content, join our next workshop!


Financial Content Wrap-Up: Trends in Banking

If you’re a “visual learner” you’ll want to check this out. Our friends over at the Financial Brand have got a deluge of statistics on where the financial services industry is headed. See for yourself how their catalog of digital banking trends point to more remote banking experiences over the next decade.

~~~

300 Trends in Banking

300 trends in bankingIn-branch transactions are 2230% more expensive than online ones (and 4250% more expensive compared to mobile!). A branch transaction costs about $4.25 compared to $0.19 and $0.10 for online and branch respectively.

When you couple this with expected declines in branch traffic, increased smartphone adoption and increased online banking use, it’s easy to see that digital is the definitive trend of the financial services industry for the next 6 years (at least).

 

In this report, those involved in the strategic planning process can find:

  • Trends in mobile usage across banking, shopping and payments
  • When and where consumers are most likely to use their mobile devices to bank, buy and pay
  • The primary factors impacting usage, loyalty and engagement
  • Demographic and territorial differences in mobile banking adoption and usage

~~~

Content Marketing – Trending Human

You’re a busy person, I get it. But I don’t care what’s on your plate, make time to listen to this BrightTALK podcast this week. It’s a perfect intro to just how powerful content marketing can be, brought to you in part by the CEO of one of the most talked about banks, Simple.

Post-crash, clients expect and need financial brands to “speak human.” This means firms need to take a fresh look at the role of “voice” in content-marketing efforts. It may not be enough to create a Twitter feed or get some videos on a corporate site. Trust and integrity are still top of mind for customers. And a more “human” approach may require deeper changes. In this podcast we’ll explore easy strategies to help financial brands create more authentic communications.

Can’t recommend this enough. Make time for it.

~~~

Ideas for a Digital Onboarding Process

Us financial marketers understand just how important a strong onboarding process is. To be a little reductive, it’s our job to get people to pay attention to what we’re saying. Well, you never have a better chance to say something than during onboarding. This is exactly when customers are exclusively rapt and scrutinous. In a scarce few months you’ll be old hat. A customer will feel like he/she has been banking with you forever. So, upfront, you need to communicate your brand identity and what it can offer – before the customer gets bored.

For banks and credit unions, the onboarding process is a critical moment to retain your customers’ interest. They’ve heard what you have to say, they understand what you’re offering and they’ve decided to open an account with you. You’ve worked hard to gain your customer’s attention. Hold on to it with an effective onboarding process.

 ~~~

Learn content marketing tips and tricks in our next workshop!

~~~

One Minute Content Marketing


Financial Content Wrap-up: 100 Million Members

Welcome to our first Financial Content Wrap-up where we highlight the most important banking industry and content marketing news of the week! Credit unions nationwide have reached over 100 million members, resource centers are a must for serious content marketers and digital cross-selling can increase your share of wallet. Check it out!

1 In 3 Americans Use a Credit Union

Big news this week as CUNA announced that credit unions have collectively passed 100 million members. Membership growth has been comfortably over 2% for the past few years, this year reaching about 2.9% to put credit unions over the 100 million mark.

CUNA Chief Economist Mike Schenk credits grass roots and social media movements.

He noted that a growing number of consumers continue to express dissatisfaction with big Wall Street banks due to economic downturn and consumer movements such as Bank Transfer Day in 2011, when consumers were urged through a grassroots movement–and primarily on social media–to leave big banks and move their money to a credit union or small bank because the organizations tend to offer better rates and incur fewer fees.

This should be an indication to financial institutions about the growing relevance of social media in financial services. Word of mouth can travel far and banks/CUs need to be able to communicate what they can offer. Cultivating an image and identity can be as important as a good rate.

For now we’re happy to congratulate credit unions nationwide on staying ahead of the digital curve and reaching their goal of 100 million members.

Using a Resource Center to House Content and Develop a Strategy

A post from Britt Klontz over at the Content Marketing Institute outlines the importance of having a resource center.

Categorization and organization are vital to a content marketing strategy for two reasons.

1) Your customers need to be able to engage with your content easily.

2) You need to know what content you have to know how to use it.

“Essentially, a resource center is a site within a site, where all of your content is organized. The necessity of having one has only arisen relatively recently with the evolution of content marketing from a single effort here and there to a constant supply of blog posts, videos, podcasts, eBooks, SlideShares, and more. Without a resource center, all of this wonderful content can become buried on a blog’s archives or get dispersed across several sections of a company’s site. This makes it very difficult for consumers to find, and it essentially means that a piece of content’s usefulness will continually decline as it ages, as it simply won’t be findable over the long term.”

Content needs to be organized in a coherent, sensible way. There’s a reason you don’t find seven shelves of broccoli next to soups and fishes in a grocery store; the food is organized.

You won’t only help your customers out with a resource center, you’ll help yourself. Need a blog post with retirement tips? Find your previous content on retirement to see if you’re retreading old ground, or repurpose what you’ve already got.

Check out how companies like Red Bull and Bridgestone make their content easy to find.

Cross-Selling through Digital Channels

95% of bank/customer interactions are projected to have a digital component in the coming years. With the face of retail delivery changing, financial institutions need to rethink their strategies to engage customers.

We’ve outlined the basics of using digital channels (website, mobile, social media, email) to capture your customers’ attention. Hint: You’ve got to have something more to say than advertising a new low rate.

Cross-selling is most effective through your website. You have the best capability to cross-sell because it’s a controlled environment on your turf. You can collect user info and connect users with reps in a place that’s safe and official. (I.e. compared to a public sphere like Twitter where people may not want tell the world about their finances.)

 

~~~

That wraps up this week in Financial Content! Drop by our upcoming workshop where we’re always happy to chat about what content can do for banks and CUs.

~~~

One Minute Content Marketing