What do modern movies and banking have in common? It seems like every other Hollywood movie that comes out is about the Apocalypse and while the world isn’t ending for banks, it sure is changing. You can do stuff like take a picture of a check with your portable phone/Internet device to deposit it. No more going to the bank, filling out a deposit slip, listing checks singly or total from otherside.
So do excuse the Apocalyptic hyperbole, but branches have been closing in record numbers because of these changes. A recent article from industry vet Jim Marous highlights the effect on bank branches:
According to SNL Financial, banks closed a net 1,487 branches last year. That’s the highest number of net closures since the research firm began tracking the statistic in 2002. The majority of these closures have been attributed to the increasing use of online and mobile banking as technology enables consumers to manage their accounts, make remote deposits and shop for services more efficiently from desktops or smartphones.
With many analysts saying that 25-30% of all branches are unprofitable, this could represent a ‘backlog’ of well over 10,000 branches nationwide.
The Branch traffic problem
People aren’t going to branches in anywhere near the numbers that they used to. Online and mobile banking have changed the ways that banks need to use to attract, engage, and retain customers.
The key to staying competitive in a digital world is having content. Content can be used to provide a great online experience and a better branch experience.
how content solves it
Let’s say a customer’s planning to retire. We all know this requires a fair amount of financial planning, but where does one start? With the right content you can answer all of your customer’s questions about retirement from budgeting to IRAs to healthcare. This is not only great for brand awareness and loyalty, but 74% of people have been shown to buy from the place that provides answers.
Content can go right on your bank’s site in the form of articles that cover everything from College Planning to Mortgages to Getting Out of Debt. You can also use it in the branch to engage with customers without chasing a sale. Inform and educate first, build trust, then sell.
Check out the story of one bank’s success with content to learn more about how content marketing can work for banks and credit unions, especially as branch traffic dwindles.