5 Reasons Why Big Bank Customers Won’t Switch
With all the bad press and negative comments made about big banks, from the financial collapse and bailout through the latest round of fee increases, you’d think big bank customers would be fighting each other to squeeze through the doors of community banks and credit unions like it’s Black Friday at Walmart.
I’ve been reading articles and comments from some big bank customers who explain why they considered switching, but then backed down. These comments seem to fall into five main categories. I’ll show you what I’ve found so your marketing department can take steps to assure prospects your financial institution offers what they want and there’s nothing to fear.
In other words, educate the public and show them the big banks have nothing over you when it comes to products and services.
Here are my top five reasons why big bank customers are afraid to move their accounts to community financial institutions.
Extensive ATM Networks — The customers claim the smaller institutions don’t give them enough convenient access to their money. If your bank or credit union is part of an ATM network, you can see how important it is to get that fact in front of the public. If you have free ATMs or rebate ATM fees, be sure you point out those facts.
Easy Online Banking and Automatic Bill Pay — This one stumps me. Do people believe if you use online bill pay with smaller financial institutions that you need to hand-crank your computer to get the system to work? Sure, there might still be some online banking systems that aren’t as user-friendly, but I can’t see how big banks have an edge in online access and convenience over the majority of community institutions. You’d better point out your abilities in your marketing materials and, especially, on your website.
More Brick and Mortar Locations — Most people choose a financial institution based on geographic affinity to the location. Close to home. Close to work. Along the commute. So arguing that a community institution doesn’t have enough locations seems like a bogus claim. But apparently, it exists. How do you counter it? Show all your locations on your website, for instance. Include a list in your marketing materials, or show a number, like “10 locations in the Omaha Metro area,” if space is short. If your credit union is a member of a shared network, point out the fact.
Lack of Services — Small business owners, to use one example I saw, say smaller institutions don’t have transaction services comparable to big banks. Other consumers simply think smaller institutions don’t offer as many services, although my guess is they never checked. Your acquisition promotions should include information about the benefits (services) your institution offers. Make sure you show your services on your website and point out what each includes.
It’s a Hassle — This may be the most precise reason of all, I think, and people make up other excuses so it doesn’t sound like they’re lazy. Anyway, these customers complain they need to switch their automatic payments, their debit card and credit card information with vendors, their bill pay data, and so on. Obviously, you promote your switch kit and the fact your staff will help, and even make the changes for these people. Offer to close the account at the big bank so they don’t need to — and avoid second thoughts.
If you plan to run a disruptor marketing campaign against a competitor, include information that counters these big bank customer arguments. Be certain you have your counter-information on your website because consumers who are searching for a new financial institution are likely to visit you online to gather information.
It’s not impossible to overcome these five reasons. Also, not every big bank customer will be bothered by these issues. But take steps to assure prospects that you offer them as much as the big banks…and maybe more.
Here’s information about a disruptor marketing campaign.