Winning the Deposit Arms Race

We recently hosted the fifth webinar in our Expert Solutions series, where Total Expert leaders talk about specific challenges that the platform can help financial institutions solve. As financial institutions address the rising rate environment, they must re-prioritize and use their technology to focus on customer experience and retention to drive growth. In this installment, Total Expert’s James White and Samantha Thielen are joined by Jessica Gardner as they discuss the tools and strategies available to help banks and credit unions grow through deposits.  

Planning for Deposit Growth

Over the past years, financial institutions have seen consumers leave deposits sitting as they are looking for higher returns. In some instances, this has inspired consumers to invest in “unnatural investments” as they seek quick returns that their deposits have been unable to generate.  

Now, as rates have gone up, many consumers with “sleepy” or sitting deposits are looking to move their money to places that might have opportunities for greater growth, and marketing has shown them a variety of alternative options with other institutions. 

While CDs have been regarded as less attractive for institutions in the past, new CDs now provide a low-risk opportunity to keep cash flow high and nurture relationships. Now, six months into a CD, institutions should be engaging customers with education about how to best leverage their accounts in the current rate environment.  

James explains that CDs are an opportunity, but it’s a balancing act. A strong deposit strategy is key to any financial institution to keep the cost of funds as low as possible. Without waking those “sleepy” depositors who have continued to renew, institutions still must focus on renewing the customers that may consider moving their accounts due to competitive market alternatives.  

The balancing act goes beyond nurturing existing and new customers. It’s important to plan to ensure deposit growth doesn’t go too fast. Jessica believes that listening to customer feedback is important throughout this process.   

As more than half of consumers use more than one financial institution, deposits leave banks and credit unions with an opportunity to use marketing strategy and education to rally around depositors to build loyal, lifelong consumers. When a customer opens a checking account, there should be a path to sustain growth, which can vary significantly from a customer engaging first through a mortgage. The critical piece of this path to loyalty? Education and onboarding. Jessica believes that the onboarding journey and ensuring you are delivering the right information at the right time is critical to setting a strong relationship foundation.  

“As a community bank or credit union, it is your responsibility to keep your customers financially healthy. You should be the trusted advisor,” said James White. He believes that education needs to go beyond checking a box or posting a blog post, and institutions must deliver messaging and content that’s relevant to what’s important to the consumer. They need to know that their institution has their best interests at heart.  

Relationships and Pricing 

It is the natural tendency throughout economic uncertainty – people want to pull back on spending and marketing. Although, financial institutions must realize that the banks and credit unions that position themselves as a resource through tough times have so much to gain on the other side. It is the perfect environment to focus on growing relationships.  

Financial institutions can drive growth by intentionally targeting customers based on the ability to make them profitable and build relationships. Consumers aren’t looking for a financial partner that they can chat with at the branch every week. They want financial health and strong customer support and onboarding.   

As generations shift and financial expectations and behaviors change, financial institutions have the chance to build relationships early on that can create additional cross-selling opportunities in the future. What is something financial institutions can do to drive relationships? According to James: Relationship pricing. Designing relationship pricing programs that allow customers or members to be rewarded for using multiple products or solutions can be mutually beneficial and drives loyalty. 

While relationships are important for loyalty and retention, it doesn’t end there. Both Jessica and James agree – institutions must have the right products to drive to. Otherwise, all the time and effort spent building the relationship is wasted. While institutions must prioritize educating with the right messaging at just the right time, they also must focus on providing products that reflect customers’ individual financial stages and goals.  

How to Drive Deposits with Total Expert? 

Total Expert is a customer engagement platform built to allow financial institutions’ marketing teams to have the data and resources necessary to reach customers with the right message at the right time.  

To drive deposits, Total Expert’s Campaign Builder allows institutions to be nimble and change messaging based on shifting priorities or financial events. For example, if rates are shifting and an institution wants to offer a special rate, lenders can quickly pivot their content to reflect the current environment. With Campaign Builder, users can pick from any data point in their database to develop a hyper-segmented campaign. For example, users can quickly filter customers by checking account balances to send an attractive CD offer. Platform users can feel empowered to quickly deploy targeted, cross-sell campaigns without needing support from external teams for data lists and messaging. To gauge the success of the campaign, users can see real-time results with open rates, clicks, deliveries, and so much more.  

For a retention play, Total Expert’s automated Journeys allow campaigns to be triggered when a customer’s CD is up for renewal. Once that date has triggered the Journey, the customer is nurtured with well-timed educational messaging and products, allowing institutions to reach customers based on where they are in their personal financial journey. 

So much more than a drip campaign, automated Journeys can monitor where the customer is in their experience with the given process. The campaigns can shift based on an action or change in behavior. If the customer targeted for CD renewal renews their account, they will be automatically removed from the Journey at the right time. This ensures that institutions can remain engaged with their customers and enhance relationships based on where they are in their financial journey.  

To watch the webinar and demo on demand, click here