According to the FFIEC, big banks spent over $17 billion on advertising and marketing in 2018. Because many community banks and local credit unions share similar attributes—like personalized customer service and community support—standing out from the competition can seem challenging.
Here’s how to crush the competition by showing the community that your business is different from both national banks and local competitors.
Focus on Digital Marketing
For local banks and credit unions, search engine optimization (SEO) should play a major role in digital marketing. Optimizing your website for mobile use, creating a Google My Business account, and targeting hyperlocal keywords can help you gain an advantage against local competitors and national banks. If you’re not sure how to implement a strong digital marketing strategy, the marketing professionals at Nettra Media, a credit union marketing agency, can help grow your financial institution with actionable and measurable marketing.
In addition to search engine optimization, implementing a powerful inbound marketing strategy can convince potential customers to visit and convert. For local banks and credit unions, content can take many forms, including product pages, blogs, resource centers, and videos. Creating meaningful and relevant content requires understanding the needs of your target audience and encouraging community engagement. Remember to mix up content types to keep your audience interested and cater to different types of customers.
When possible, localize your content by posting stories about the community. According to the experts at Nettra Media, credit unions can “out-local” bigger banks by placing a focus on their community investment with photos and videos of members, staff, the community, and local landmarks.
Offer Wealth Management Services
Today, millennials are the fastest-growing and largest consumer demographic, and many local banks fail to consider that millennials will inherit wealth from baby boomers. According to a 2012 study by Accenture, millennials will inherit approximately $30 trillion in assets over the next 40 years. And while banking convenience and speed are among their top priorities, millennials are also interested in reliable and secure ways to grow and manage their money.
Offering wealth management services and financial advice can give your local credit union or community bank a competitive edge over national banking institutions. In fact, 93 percent of credit union customers trust their financial institution, while one in three national bank customers do not trust their bank. Helping millennials plan for their future, stick to a budget, and manage their finances will ultimately result in loyalty from a large consumer base.
Partner With Local Businesses
For many customers, banking can feel like a chore. As a result, creating an enjoyable experience for customers can help you stand out from both local and national competitors and crush the competition. To create a one-of-a-kind experience for your customers, try partnering with local businesses to offer freebies or a host a giveaway. Giveaway prizes don’t have to be in the form of cash—instead, try partnering with a local restaurant to enter visitors in a drawing for a gift card.
Local banks and credit unions owe it to their community, members, stockholders, and insurers to operate honestly and reliably. Before partnering with other local businesses, take the time to research who’s behind the management. With Go Look Up, an information database, you can perform a background check on a company and the people behind the company. Go Look Up’s company search tool reveals fraud and arrest records, so you can make sure you’re only partnering with reputable and trustworthy businesses.
Despite the fierce competition from national banks, local credit unions and community banks continue to thrive due to their commitment to serving the community. Ultimately, crafting an effective digital marketing strategy, offering wealth management services, and partnering with local businesses can give you an edge over both local competition and national banking institutions.