blank billboard with ckustomers speeding past

Like many consumers, I have multiple relationships with banks and credit unions. Besides rates and convenience, there are other reasons that come into play. Some are complicated, but one is glaringly obvious.

They simply haven’t asked for my business.

That just doesn't add up.

I have an auto loan at a community bank and do no other business with them. They have never once reached out to me about a deposit account or to find out if I have any other needs they could fulfill with their financial services.

1 + 1 = 3

Take a look at the existing customer relationships you have. Most likely, your bank or credit union has a number of customers who only have one account with you. That really shouldn’t be OK. It took an investment of time and money to acquire that customer. It’s up to you to multiply the ROI.

Existing customers are already accustomed to doing business with you. Ideally, you’re providing a good solution and have built some trust. It only makes sense that you’d want to offer them more ways to maximize their money.

You already have much of their information, and you know how to reach them. They already know how to do business with you. This can be a powerful multiplier for your marketing results.

Reaching out to current customers should be a no-brainer. Onboarding is easier. Online banking is a snap. Loan approvals should be faster. That ease is a benefit to the customers as well.

Adding another account—or multiple new accounts—with current customers is an efficiency that brings more profit to your marketing campaigns and to your institution’s bottom line. You don’t have to pay for the lead to get in front of them. You already know a lot about them. Use what you know about their banking behaviors to uncover products and services that bring value to their lives or their businesses.

This should be an essential element of your marketing strategy because it multiplies the result of the initial investment of attracting them.

Here are three essential strategies your bank or credit union should be using to market to current customers:

1. direct advertising

Mine your data and find out who needs to know more about how your institution can bring value. Be targeted. Start some compelling conversations with both retail and commercial customers specifically suited to them.

It’s easy to send direct mail and email to existing customers. You have all their information already. A straightforward offer for a financial checkup or a “let us earn more of your business” is money well spent.

Is a loan or CD maturing? How can you retain that business with a new account offering? Reach out early because this probably isn’t on your customers’ radars. Save them money and hassle. They’ll appreciate your interest and desire to help.

No one-size-fits-all marketing, please.

Beware of sending irrelevant marketing offers that will annoy and alienate current customers. If the customer doesn’t own a home, a HELOC offer makes no sense.

2. personal conversations

While much business is being transacted online, there are still times when people need to speak to a banker. At a drive thru, the teller line, video meetings or on the phone, bankers actually have to talk to a customer in real lold school sales bad for banker marketingEstablish a culture of advisement, not sales. Employees don't want to feel like sleazy sales people.ife. This is an ideal time to inquire about how else the banker can help make the customer’s financial life better.

Train your bankers to ask, advise and help. Establish a culture of advisement, not sales. That helps build trust from your customers as well as your bankers who don’t want to feel like sleazy salespeople pushing something people don’t need.

3. leverage technology

Many smart financial institutions have adopted fintec solutions that offer customers personalized online portals to online banking, bill pay and other functions. The personalization allows financial marketers to create customized offers that meet the customers where they are: their lifestyle, their life stage and their needs. This is an easy way to showcase the financial solutions that matter to that particular person without bombarding them with information they don’t want or need. If you’re not using such a platform, it bears investigating.

more relationships equal more value

If you’re a financial institution that wants more business—either on the loan side or the deposit side—then you must ask your current customers while you are marketing to new ones.

Your marketing plan should combine technology with in-person and old-school strategies to both current and prospective customers. That delivers a well-rounded marketing effort that reaps the longterm love and loyalty that pays dividends.

If you need help generating more relationships with current customers for your bank or credit union, schedule a meeting with Martha Bartlett Piland today.