Why Credit Unions & Community Banks Need to Pair Digital Banking with Digital Marketing
Of the many important lessons the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, don’t overlook this one: Digital marketing and communication strategies are key for any business, even those in the financial services industry.
On this episode of the Digital Banking podcast, Prisma Campaign’s Chief Revenue Officer Ianai Urwicz discusses how critical it is for financial institutions to keep up with the ever-evolving marketing landscape.
Ianai’s perspective is rich with culture and experience.
Though born in Israel, Ianai moved to Latin America as a child and grew up mostly in Uruguay. He began his career in the telecom industry and worked for companies like AT&T and T-Mobile before eventually venturing into mobile payments and the FinTech ecosystem.
Now, Ianai serves as Chief Revenue Officer at Prisma Campaigns, the startup behind an agile omnichannel marketing tool specifically designed and engineered for financial institutions. Part of his work includes helping the company achieve its goal of creating the “Amazon experience while banking.” In other words, he works to leverage user data to create targeted campaigns across different marketing channels.
Ideally, all financial institutions, including credit unions, should use data and modern marketing technology to predict and support their members — but creating personalized marketing campaigns comes with its fair share of challenges.
Still, nothing is impossible.
Learn what approach financial institutions should lead with and how to create continuity across your digital and face-to-face messaging. Bonus: Find out how artificial intelligence can take your marketing campaigns to the next level.
⚡ Ianai says financial institutions must digitize marketing and communication methods to better connect with members. And with modern-day tools, it’s easier than ever for marketers to predict a member’s next move or truly understand their journey. As he points out, these tools provide “a lot of information and the ability for marketers to do their job well.”
⚡ Digital marketing is constantly shifting — but the key to sustainable value is to keep up with what people want to see. To Ianai, the excitement is in learning and trying to figure out the next challenge as well as “how we can reshape our technology to serve the newest generations.”
⚡ During the COVID pandemic’s initial onset in February and March, Ianai and his team saw a big increase in engagement across their marketing campaigns. The big jump — to nearly double last year’s average number of calls — indicates to Ianai that more people have gone digital as a part of society’s “new normal.”
Marketing challenges + how can financial institutions overcome them
“First, be consistent. Really make your client feel like you know about him [and] what he’s looking for. [Don’t be] overwhelming with offers he’s not interested in; you are not spam. And as a financial institution, care about his financial wealth and his life overall. I think [the main challenge for marketers] is how to balance your outreach communication using the digital channels and supporting your customer where they need [you] the most.”
The importance of understanding your members’ needs
“Do you know what happened with your members today? Do you know how their health situation is? If they have been laid off? Simple questions like this that [aren’t] about sales or marketing should lead you as a marketer to try to reach out to each member and understand their situation. … You need to understand the preferred channel for each member [and] how you can reach out without overwhelming [them] with messages or emails. So, if you have a member that fluently connects to mobile banking, it doesn’t make sense to overwhelm [them] with an additional email.”
Why artificial intelligence is a boon for credit union marketing
“It gives [you] the ability to actually drill down and understand each of your members or customers on a one-to-one level and to personalize your marketing at scale. Something that was unthinkable 10 years ago is now doable by using AI, [which is] being able to talk to each member as a human you’ve known for a while. So this is, at a high level, the main advantage of using AI.”
The personalization of digital channels via AI and marketing
“To really deliver a message, [either] for sales or marketing, you need to understand who the person is. That is quite key. It’s difficult, it’s really challenging, but at the same time, in today’s connected world, it’s more accessible to understand each customer [compared to] 10 years ago. And AI can play a key role in demystifying different [marketing] personas, so it may allow us to really understand each customer as a unique person.”
Sales and marketing teams — a necessary investment
“There are some studies out there that estimate if you would like to grow 100% per year, you need to invest at least 20% of last year’s budget in marketing — this is a generic rule. If we look at financial institutions, there’s definitely a way to measure the [return on investment]. … When credit unions start using Prisma, they run a first set of campaigns, they can measure results, they can see … how many preapproved loans they close by using multichannel campaigns, and that automatically leads to [an] ROI. [Today], it’s really easy to measure the ROI and to see [marketing] not as a cost, but also as an investment.”
The key to cohesive digital and face-to-face community messaging
“I think there are mainly two things here. First of all, it’s to ask more [questions]; I think credit unions should ask more about their members. The same member might change [throughout the] year … so, it’s really important to understand what they’re doing [and] what their expectations are for the next year. Second, have technology that allows you to communicate across channels. If someone [comes] to the branch for a specific concern, make sure the message or the communication you have after that is consistent with the interaction you have with the member in the branch.”