Has the end of bank and credit union marketing arrived?
Has the end of bank and credit union marketing arrived?
I’m back with a few more good-versus-bad methods to handle your direct marketing copy. Today, the topic is reply forms, and once again, I’m using the SAC letter as a starting point.
The SAC Federal Credit Union members’ letter, first described in my August 19 post, has a reply form on the bottom of the 8.5 x 14-inch letter.
Attention marketers – the regular direct mail channel is wide open and awaiting your next direct mail campaign.
Want to make someone’s eyes pop wide open? Send the person a gift card in the mail. I don’t mean your family or friends. Send gift cards to your prospects.
I know, you’re probably thinking, “That’s crazy. Do you know how much that would cost?”
I counter with, “Do you realize how easy it is? And how much attention it will get?”
What’s up with Ally Bank marketing?
If you’re a bank marketer, undoubtedly you are keeping up with the Ally Bank magazine and newspaper ads.
There’s a right way and a wrong way to do most everything. That includes promoting your products and services with your marketing materials.
In my August 19 post, “The Good, the Bad, the Example,” I pointed out some of the features of a marketing letter from SAC Federal Credit Union. While I gave a few tips showing how to improve the letter, I’ve had requests to go into more detail. After all, a lot of us learn by example. Knowing what’s wrong doesn’t tell you how to do it right.
So I’m going to point out a problem area on the letter, then give you examples of how to improve it and a few tips why my examples work better.
Foster Farms could have followed the crowd and used low-cost e-mail to send me its $2.00 Off coupon for a package of chicken breasts.
The mad rush to participate in social media appears to be reminiscent of the great California gold rush of 1849 and the Oklahoma land rush of 1889.
A few years ago, I wrote promotional materials for a client in the business of hog genetics. The company’s scientists manipulated genes through breeding to select quality traits in the sows’ offspring. While the company sold some live hogs to breeders, most of its products were marketed at a pre-offspring phase.
I was writing promotions for a bank. But it was a sperm bank.
I simply can’t understand why the marketing folks working for banks and credit unions have such a tough time coming up with great headlines.
Does your computer show a Flesch-Kincaid Readability rating when you perform spell check? (If not, look at “Options” under “Spelling.”) The Flesch-Kincaid rating can help you determine if the copy you plan to use in your marketing materials can be easily understood.
Remember, a key to a successful marketing component is how quickly and effortlessly the reader, your potential customer, can understand the offer you’re making.
It’s rare to find a marketing piece that has features you want to applaud, and at the same time parts that make you scream, “Why’d you do it?”
The Example is an 8.5 x 14-inch letter from SAC Federal Credit Union. The highlight for me is a feature you seldom find on any mail piece, rarely a letter, and never before (as far as I’ve experienced) on a financial services letter. It’s an interactive feature.
Was it a warning for us folks in earthquake-prone California?
Or an attempt to reach out to us old codgers?
The personalized letter that arrived in my mail today is a textbook example of how NOT to write a letter to one of your best customers…or any customer for that matter.
Recently I started to think, is the branch bank dead? Are your typical bank tellers obsolete? With technology moving forward at an increasing rate, I really believe the answer to these questions will soon be “Yes.” So you ask, why do I believe this?
Internet banking is one of the biggest technological break throughs in banking for consumers in recent times. The increased convenience and accessibility that people gain through internet banking revolutionized how people interact with their bank, and money. Not to mention it saves consumers a lot of valuable time. This has not only remained true since the beginning, but the amount of features built into most internet banking sites has increased at a extremely rapid rate with the inclusions of such things as bill pay and better money management tools.
Check your daily mail or your sample file for an envelope package with a letter inside. Does the letter have a P.S. at the end? If so, it’s on its way to being a good, solid direct marketing letter.
I’ve seen marketing letters I’ve written come back from a client with the P.S. marked for deletion. That tells me I’m working for a naive marketer who doesn’t understand the purpose of a P.S. in a marketing letter.
(Editor’s Note: This is another in a series of blogs related to the training of financial institution employees. If appropriate, please pass this information to the training staff)
It’s called taking the road less traveled.
If you want to cut through the growing clutter and stand out from the pack, why not take a contrarian approach to your bank marketing.
A lot of factors go into making an entertaining film that brings in the bucks at the box office. Acting, directing, camera work, special effects. They’re all important.
Don’t forget the dialog.
What the characters say contributes toward making a hit movie.
Often I see examples of promotional pieces that fail because the company tries to force too many ideas into it. Other times, the intention is good, but they fail to execute it correctly. It makes you wonder if anyone read the copy before it was printed.
For your consideration, here’s a bank ad that appeared recently in the local newspaper. The image shows only the upper portion of the ad and leaves off the bank logo and address information.