Digital Marketing is Tricky for Credit Unions but Essential, Says Kristin Harrison of Web Strategies


“We need to start thinking like tech companies, because we’ve got cash apps, we’ve got Apple Pay, we’ve got Venmo. Everything is coming out of the woodwork, and I just really see a big shift happening in the next handful of years that I want to prepare them for. I don’t want to run from it.”



with guest:

Kristin Harrison
Director of Business Development

Web Strategies

Episode Summary

Digital tools are increasingly critical to any community financial; institution’s marketing program. However, with so many options literally at one’s fingertips, it can be difficult to create a cohesive, effective digital marketing strategy. That said, the starting point is always a careful consideration of the institution’s culture.

In this episode of the Digital Banking podcast, host Josh DeTar welcomed Kristin Harrison, the Director of Business Development at Web Strategies. The two discussed the importance of thinking outside the box in digital marketing (especially in the financial space), how to stand out in today’s competitive market, and why you need to be progressive if you want to succeed in such a crowded space.

Key Insights

Everyone’s on an equal playing field in digital marketing.

If you want to stand out in a competitive market, always remember that everyone’s playing the same game. That’s why you need to think outside the box if you want to truly thrive. Google doesn’t care about the size of your organization or the number of branches.

“Everyone can put out a Google ad. Everyone can put out a video. The asset size, branch size, or how many accountholders you have — these things don’t matter so much. They matter, but they matter a little bit less when it comes to digital marketing, because you can still serve the same products, and you can market the exact same way. Really, the biggest differentiator is that you need to have a progressive mindset and don’t let anything hold you back. But the landscape is exactly the same.”

Forget about vanity metrics. Focus on conversions.

Impressions, views, etc., are all vanity metrics. They might be indicators of success for some industries, but that’s not the case for financial institutions. Kristin recommended focusing on conversions.

“What action do you want them to take? Do you want them to call you? Do you want them to fill out a contact form on your site? You have to look at that. Start with the end in mind. What action do you want them to take when they come to you or when they click on your ad? The vanity metrics are not going to tell your story. The vanity metrics are not going to help you,” noted Kristin.

Many CEOs don’t understand the impact of marketing.

Kristin said financial institutions need to start thinking of themselves as technology companies. Also, CEOs need to realize that marketing is fundamental to their FI’s success. They won’t go far if they don’t change their mindset. Only progressive CEOs will come out as winners. Kristin talked about the importance of innovative thinking.

“The ones that are going to survive are the ones that are forward-thinking, and understand that marketing matters. If these CEOs do not start understanding their accountholders and their behaviors online and meet them where they are, and improve that user experience, I just don’t know what the future looks like for them. We think it’s bad now; just wait two years from now.”

Guest At A Glance

Kristin Harrison
Director of Business Development

Web Strategies

Find Kristin On:

Kristin helps financial institutions achieve their growth goals through targeted data-driven digital marketing solutions.

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