Critical Bank Marketing Trends in 2012

Yes, one more article predicting the top trends for banks in 2012 – although this one will focus on practical marketing, customer and communication trends to help you grow your bank in the new year.

2012 is the year to focus on the following:

  1. Acquiring the “right” new customers – knowing who they are and how, when and where to get their attention. And guess what – when your competitors focus on targeting the “right” new customers, it means they’ll be focusing on acquiring your most profitable customers, which leads us to the next trend…
  2. Customer retention. Banks are seriously refining who their best customers are and why – it’s not only about profitability! Protect your best customers from the predatory actions of your competitors and make them fiercely loyal to your bank. Give them your best offers and lavish them with appreciation and appropriate attention!
  3. Selective product innovation. More banks will be offering interesting product bundles and better deals for customers who bring more business to the bank. Keys to success include knowing how the customers you want to attract to the bank make their decisions, how your competitors currently meet their needs, and selectively designing a new product suite to attract these folks. But don’t forget best practices in launching new products and communicating them persuasively to your current as well as prospective customers – a critical step in letting them know what’s in it for them.
  4. More cross selling. More banks will focus on cross selling their existing customers – those with the highest potential who have both the capacity and the means to do more business with their bank. And most bankers know that their best customers also bank somewhere else, which means their best customers will be presented with enticing offers from competitors. Get in the game and get there first – with relevant offers that make sense. And don’t forget cross selling at the initial account opening – critical to laying the ground work for future business.
  5. Team building and upgrading banker skills to increase productivity, improve cross selling efforts and enhance the customer experience. Leaner staffs mean every employee has to do more and know more, so skill development at every level including active listening, asking questions and offering solutions will be more important than ever.
  6. Consistent messaging to all your stakeholders. Do your bankers, customers, community and Directors all answer this question the same way; “XX Bank is the bank that _______________.”
  7. Social media. If you haven’t already, this may be the year to step into this channel and start engaging customers in a meaningful way. Be strategic and thoughtful, and manage it with appropriate resources including marketing, IT and compliance to make sure your social media efforts are adding value to your bottom line.

 

What other trends do you see for the year – we’d love your thoughts and feedback.

As always we’re here to help if you’re interested in evaluating practical approaches to leverage these trends and grow your bank. Here’s to a happy, healthy and prosperous 2012!

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