Banking on Digital Growth
Banking on Digital Growth

Episode · 11 months ago

61) #InsideDigitalGrowth: Clearing the Obstacles to Digital Growth w/ Joe Welu & Sam Kilmer

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Today, we're to go inside digital growth and continue the fireside chat conversation I started in Episode 59 with Joe Welu, CEO of Total Expert. This time, Sam Kilmer, Senior Director at Cornerstone Advisors, also joins us.

We discuss solutions to common obstacles along with best practices from industry leaders to help you build a foundation for future success.

Joe, Sam, and I talk about:

- The evolution of sales from a hard-sell to a learning-first model

- What it means that we're moving into an expertise economy

- When the size of your financial institution matters and when it doesn't

You can find this interview, and many more, by subscribing to Banking on Digital Growth on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.

Hey, guys, it's James. Robert. Thanksfor joining me for episode number 61 for the Banking on Digital Growthpodcast. Today we're to go inside digital Growth and continue thefireside chat conversation that was hosted by the financial brand. Joe.Well, you, CEO of Total Expert and I started an episode Number 59. However,this time we're joined by Sam Kilmer, who is the senior director atCornerstone Advisors. And Sam asked. Joe and I have some very good questionsthat I know will provide you with a tremendous amount of insight andclarity into some of the biggest digital growth opportunities availablefor you and your financial brand to capture. Because we're going to discusssolutions to very common obstacles that we see along with sharing bestpractices from industry leaders to help you build a foundation for futuresuccess. Enjoy the show you're listening to Banking on DigitalGrowth with James Robert Lay, a podcast that empowers financial brand marketing,sales and leadership teams to maximize their digital growth potential bygenerating 10 times more loans and deposits. Today's episode is part ofthe inside digital growth Siri's, where James Robert shares answers to some ofthe biggest digital marketing and sales questions he gets from the digitalgrowth community. Have a question you want to get answers to on a futureepisode. Visit www dot go ask jr dot com to submit your question today. Nowlet's go inside. Digital growth. Let's mix this thing up. Let's have alittle bit of fun. I'm just gonna open this up. You know, we're never short ofa good, provocative opinion or world view, even if you want to disagree withit, maybe even violently to make the conversation more fun. All just open itup with an opening salvo that there's certain types of sales and marketingout there that just kind of hang on and for dear life and the way I woulddescribe it as you. Sometimes you've seen some of the books on it, you know,The Rainmaker, selling and whatnot. I mean, we've seen stereotypes of it outin the industry with many of you Remember the movie Glengarry Glen Rosswould always be closing, you know, coffee's for closers. Remember thecoffee's for closers, of course. Smile and dial, smile and dial another one ofthe more recent vintage Leonardo DiCaprio and the wolf of Wall Streetsaid, I'll see if I could get this right. Sell me this pen. And it was allabout the charismatic in person or over the sweatshop phone call. Heavy ofselling you something, whether you needed it or not. And it's just seemsto me like over the last several years we've moved on environment. We're notjust millennials, but all of us have moved towards self buying and learningfor ourselves. First, it seems like Cove, it is actually kind of sealed.The deal on this for a lot of us. I don't know if you guys have anythoughts on the state of that traditional rainmaker relationshipselling. I know, Joe, anything you've seen. I Number one. It's we've justseen seen everything accelerate in the direction we're talking about, which isthat it's not just about you can't you can't just think about How do I? How doI close more business? How do I do more loans? How do I open? Maura counts.It's ultimately how can I create value and a partnership and build arelationship with my customer that that not only do we find valuables andorganization because there are customers, but ultimately that theyfind value it right, and then it's the way that you're able to communicatethose products services with way you're able to educate the consumer. Theirexpectation for being educated before they make any decisions is on LeeIncreasing and James Robert. I know you have a tremendous amount of experienceand perspective on this topic as well. Yeah, so what it boils down to isreally two things the empowered and the educated consumer, and all of that hasbeen brought on by this rise in digital by the rise in the Internet. If youhave a question, where is the very first place you go? You go to Google,you ask Google, and then Google will help provide you that. Answer thatresponse. That guidance. And that's really the opportunity that we see fourfinancial brands I'll never forget. It was only just a couple of years ago,the CEO of a financial brand told me one of their goals was to push productdown people's throat, and so the opportunity was to help the unawarebecome aware of what the opportunities are to help first and really sellsecond and be that helpful guide on these consumers journeys. Because evenwith Kobe, I think what we're seeing is...

...there's still a lot of confusion.There's a lot of chaos and people are looking for two things. They're lookingfor help, and they're looking for hope and hope often has to come before help.Yeah, fine, no question. I mean, we saw many of the organizations that thatwe've all been fortunate Thio work with and in some of some of which I haven'tbeen ableto been fortunate to work with. But I've admired how they have throughthis environment this last six months. It really ultimately became financialfirst responders for the communities that they serve. And to see that starthappening to see organizations actually moving with the intention of helping.That was really cool from from our seat, right. And you've seen Thean Destry asa whole. And in some of the changes that have happened with with digitalover the last few years, you've just you've seen this new perspective thisyear from Hey, I need toe help these customers in in a very differentenvironment than we've ever seen. So it's it's just really change, changethe dynamics a lot, and one of the best ways to do that is with an acronym thatwe use. It's it's just it's going all in and it's three things. It's firstand foremost is just asking what's what's what's keeping you up at night.What's bothering you. Listening number two to those responses and thenlearning and then using that as a way to craft solutions and really cures tothose people's pain points. And by just having that open ear, that empatheticear, it allows others to guide that conversation for you. So you're nothaving toe wondering. Well, what should we do next? How do we help people?People will tell you how they wanna be helped. Yeah, you know, James Robert,as you mentioned that it occurred to me, you know, we're a cornerstone. Were inand out of, you know, several 100 financial institutions a year. I mean,obviously, summer way more exceptional than others that any number of thingsmarketing has always been. I think we could all agree one of the weakerpoints in banking, not because of any anything sinister anybody that's doneanything wrong, it's just it's not been the focus area. It wasn't on the agendaof strategic planning for many, many years. Just like technology wasn't formany, many years. But it sure is now a Z. I think about that. I love to getyour take on this. It just it strikes me that there's an internal like Whatyou were just saying makes perfect sense of what Jodi said makes perfectsense. But somewhere between us all knowing that and then when theytranslate that into their marketing content and their delivery, it justcomes across often. Times is kind of every everybody's saying the samecorporate squawk. You know, it doesn't it doesn't that that thing that we knowthat we should help people instinctively it gets converted into,you know, we've got the best rate. Check it out and it just it doesn'ttranslate. For some reason, empathy is lost in the translation, right? Yeah,and it just It also seems like Joe, this is something that you and I havetalked about before. Two. Is is that when you get sort of inside thefinancial institution, you know, when you say marketing it immediately sortof conjures a department of bureaucracy in organization. It doesn't conjure adiscipline or a center of excellence or a way of doing things. It seems likewe've kind of had some organizational funk that James Robert is folks likeyou and I have been kind of getting into these shops. We start asking aboutmarket. We're not asking about a department we're asking about. You knowhow you go about doing certain things to help people. I just I don't know ifeither one of you guys have ah thought on that, but I know that you had a niceview on this. That kind of showed the challenge. James Robert of you've kindof got three different areas that might be organized differently in a bankmight be 13. Not even three, you know. But you still have this need there inthe middle of the expertise and how you translate that into help. Yes, yes, youknow, we've We've moved beyond a product economy, one that has beencommoditized and and when we see historically, we talk and we thinkabout marketing. Maybe why marketing hasn't been viewed as a strategic partof a financial brand. It's because marketing up to this point has been a acost or an expense expense center. Whether that be TV, direct mail, radio,print billboards, it is very hard to quantify that. And so all you would getis one message to many people, and it was the same commoditized corporatespeak. But now, as we move beyond the product economy, we're moving throughan experience economy, one that is built around systems and processes. Butto me, I'm looking towards the future, and the next level up is going to bewhat I'm calling the knowledge economy or the expertise economy, where theknowledge that we retain and then not only retain that share that andcommunicated out into the marketplace, but also to our current account holdersto our current stakeholders. It's our...

...expertise which will become ourcompetitive advantage, whether that be through marketing, whether that bethrough the cells line or the service line expertise is essential, and one ofthe big questions, then, is ultimately and this is such an awesome slide, andI think it's so on point. But is how do you enable the delivery of thisexpertise? And ultimately, how do you orchestrate the different functionalareas of the business. How do you orchestrate the marketing and themessaging to align with the sales and the service organization, the humanbeings that are taking care of the customers, right? The the consumer is,maybe they're reading something that's helpful. That's educational. Maybe it'sabout small business banking. Maybe it's about wealth planning. Whatever itmight be that they might be reading, then how do you arm and enable the restof the organization so that when that consumer comes in the door and ask thequestion, there ultimately have a very on point message? That's consistent,right? So it's ultimately the big question that we see organizations andyou guys obviously have a front row seat to this is how do youappropriately orchestrate thes things to to work together and how then do youenable the delivery of that expertise? And being able to differentiate onexpertise and high quality advice is a financial institution. I mean, it is socritical to the future, and I know you guys agree with me on that, Yeah, youknow, I think that the other thing that we forget, so obviously I think thethree of us are all in a violent agreement here that there's so muchupside potential of getting this right. I think the thing that we oftentimesforget is, you know, we've tended to think in banking that, you know a badcredit portfolio will kill a bank. True, we've tended to think that a badacquisition can kill a bank also true. But also, if we don't get this digitalgrowth stuff right, it's maybe the third rail that takes us off the railsis a bank, and I think we were not giving it. We're not giving it what itneeds to know. I think the main thing I had to look at is just during co vid.My colleague, our research director, Ron Shevlin, just recently concluded astudy on this where he asked hundreds and hundreds of consumers arepresentative sample nationwide were they most recently opened up theirprimary financial account relationship. And if you kind of take a look at theresults here, that green bar there on the far right of each one of thesecategories is in the last few months during the co bed and sort of thedigital transformation that none of us really asked for immediately. But weall got it thrown in our laps. Didn't great acceleration, right? I mean,great, great. No, no doubt if you look at this, what's happened is is thatmega banks and digital banks like Chime and Varroa and Al I have picked up morethan their fair share of new business. And it has directly been at the expenseof predominantly community banks and also, to a lesser degree, but stillimpact. It would be credit unions. And you have to ask yourself, The questionis, what we see is they're the megabanks. There's one thing this scaleof marketing and technology and digital and call center in these things themega bank. This is one thing the mega banks and maybe the digital banks.They've gotten this right. This is a real threat, don't you think So, guys?Absolutely. You know, when we look at this, when we look at this idea ofscale, that is exactly what digital growth provides. It provides amultiplying effect where two becomes 44 becomes a it becomes 16 so forth and soon. And so at first, for if I'm a community banker or lead over creditunion or just a legacy financial brand, for that matter, an incumbent. I'velooked at digital up to this point as a neck Spence because it requires someinvestment whether that be on the technology side, the capability, thecontent, the talent and so it first digital will have, ah, hidden dip. Butvery quickly we're gonna come out of that dip on the other side and digitalbecomes the accelerant. Thio use Joe's words. It will become the forcemultiplier. Exactly. Exactly. Well, Joe, you've worked with. I mean, you workedboth with community financial institutions and credit unions, Butyou've also worked with some really big big lenders that air really out there.We've worked with, you know, two of the top five banks and then all the waydown to write much smaller community financial institutions. So we've we'vedefinitely had had exposure to the whole the whole gamut for sure. I wantto speak to that point because I think this is very important. I just did someadvisory work for a top 15 European bank and some of the questions that Iwas getting through this engagement, where the exact same questions that Iget from say, a local community bank or credit union here, stateside, where Isee the opportunity is, you know, a lot of times credit news of community bankswill think to themselves were just too...

...small for this. So we just don't havethe size. It's actually that smaller size that is really a capability,because you're able it is you're able to pivot and turn that ship much fasterthan large giant aircraft carrier. And if I think about the dinosaurs right,you think about the environmental changes that took out the DinosaursCove. It's just an environmental change that environmental change we're seeingwith digital. It wasn't that large dinosaurs that survived theseenvironmental changes. The dinosaurs died. It was the smaller, moreadaptable, nimble creatures that not only survived. They thrived followingthe dinosaurs demise. Yeah, if you're small and nimble right now, you'reyou're asking the smartest organization. Those most well run organizations areasking these questions. How do we use this to our advantage? How how do weposition ourselves as that guide as that financial partner to the consumerin these local markets? How do we How do we put our arms around themdigitally speaking right. How do we take care of them and just be there for,um, and make them feel like we understand their needs, what they'regoing through? I think a big part of what the financial institutions thathave done exceptionally well is they've had a level of empathy andunderstanding what's helpful for their consumers, the digital bankingacceleration and the account openings. I really think that that's simply afunction of that trend. Arguably, yes, it's accelerated, but that's alreadybeen accelerating in terms of account openings online. You guys agree withthat, right? I mean, we've seen this this trend for a while. That's notsurprising. Yeah, I know it's not surprising, and I would just add that.I mean, I think when you really peel this back and looking at the sessionname here, we're talking about digital growth, and I can see that there'sprobably somebody out there in bank land that's saying, But Sam, ourdigital banking is strong, were on you know Rev. Three of our digital bankingoffering. You know, we have decent, you know, account opening that's gettingbetter, and I just one of the things that I always kind of push the pausebutton on that is to say, those are probably the two best areas in terms ofthe state of the state. Right now, when we go in and people young and back atCornerstone on a typical bank or credit union right now, you know I've got thisloosely laid out here on the slide by I've adopted the federal government'shomeland security color coding methodology here. I hope that hopethat's not too big government for you entrepreneurs out there. But I just thepoint to make here is that we would say that you're right, your digital bankingsystems out there. You put a lot of attention in those, and if you look atyour account opening systems, I suspect many of your pretty critical of themright now and probably rightfully so. But believe it or not, that's actuallynot too bad, either. I mean, it's a little bit of a yellow, but it zcaution, but it's not too bad. It's the other areas. A couple, the areas thatwe've been talking about thus far that are really the oranges and red, youknow, kind of flashing red beacons that we're finding out there, Which is justare you giving people what they need to help them in a way that allows them tobuy for themselves? And it's just, you know, this self guided help. And youmentioned James, Robert, when somebody goes to Google and sort of theknowledge search and kind of really putting this together in automationwith your Martek and make putting all that content out there and I don't knowif either one of you guys have When you see this picture, what do you see? Whatdo you see here? Is anything jump out of you? I think the security colorsjump out for sure, but, you know, thank you. Appreciate that slide wear overconsultant. Great. Well, I was actually gonna take a different approach. Iactually see this is almost like the report that you get whenever you takeyour car into the mechanic. The mechanical look at this, But but but Iactually see this and mapped out to almost the what I call the digitalconsumer buying journey. And we've done a great job to your point, Sam of theservice side of the business. So once someone opens an account we can conductand interact with them digitally through mobile APS, etcetera. But as wemove up into the to the buying funnel that that area of awareness and reallythe consideration stage of the buying journey, that's where we're seeing thegreatest gaps that can be bridged going forward. And so that is the greatestopportunity. And to the point of this idea of going to Google, I thinkthere's, you know, we we can look at financial services and the complexitiesof a checking account, or or really even more so on the mortgage side orthe lending side, the complexities of getting that loan. It's almost likehealth care, right? You can go and you can google your symptoms and Google isgonna give you a lot of information. But that expertise from the doctor fromthe physician to overlay the context of a person's unique situation. That'salmost what we're seeing with financial...

...services from that perspective ofexpertise, because you could get some general broad knowledge. But to applythat through the financial brand, that's powerful. Yeah, I mean thethings that I think it is exceptionally powerful, and if you look at the firstcouple of layers here, digital banking, a digital account opening. There's noquestion there's various phases of, shall we say, optimization andrefinement that is maybe going toe happen in those things. But arguably alot of that's becoming table stakes very quickly. From our perspective,what's not becoming table stakes where we see a huge open field opportunitythan is as those people are coming into the organization? How do you number oneEngage interact with them in a way that's going to create tremendousloyalty and advocacy from those customers. How do you provide themvalue and advice using the data and analytics. So the center of this I lookat that, really, this is a great slide. The center of this is how do you usethe data and analytics and then action on that and enable the humans that areactually advising and taking care of your customers? Right? I think it's soawesome to think that we're in a place as an industry where the data thattechnology, all of the things exist to actually have a more positive impactand a better outcome for a consumer right, And if you think about you knowa lot of our roots are in the lending side. So how many people have gottenthe wrong type alone? Right? Well, today you have the opportunity toreally distill down and help meet people, make better financial decisions.If you're an organization and I'm looking at a path forward and how do wegrow, man, if you can get to a place where you're really helping people makebetter financial decisions there, there's a lot of opportunity there fromour C absolutely. And one of the things that you said I wanted to build uponthat thought was this idea of the data and analytics that gives the financialbrand an ability toe, as the title here says, to target to target people from aproactive stance, leaning into other people's pain points becausehistorically speaking as well as financial brands, we've waited forsomeone to raise their hand. But now, with all of the data, we can take aproactive stance, do outreach to meet the person where they're at on theirown individual financial journey in that lifetime. On that lifetime journey,right? What milestones through data now and in many of the organizations thatwe see and Sam you guys have Ah, obviously an even deeper perspective,but the amount of data and things that your your consumers and and hopefullyyou're you're managing the compliance correctly and you've got all your optins and whatnot. But assuming all of that's there, the amount of data thatyou have on on your customer can inform how you should be engaging with him.And most likely, what is the next big financial milestone that they're gonnahave at this stage of life. And then you should be delivering things thatare going to help inform that next financial decision. Right? So you'rebuilding that trust that James Robert always talks about. If you'redelivering things that are more relevant and more helpful, you're goingto create a much more trusted relationship and give you theopportunity as an organization to then help make recommendations on productsand services that will be the right ones for them. At that point. Yeah,it's a it's a good point, Joe and I always a little bit hesitate here whenI put up the reds and the oranges, because I'm always fearful that youknow you'll have a financial institution. Were always being verymindful of. You know, of course, you don't just go into a bank and say, Well,yeah, your content and your call center sucks. It's like, Well, no, you know,like, of course they are. That's why we're hiring you. Don't tell us. Tellus something that we can do about it. I just point to these things becausethey're obviously challenges. But I think the more important thing is, whatcan you do about it? How can you prioritize those things? And so we kindof laid out a few things that you can sort of think, you know, getting backto James Roberts. You know, whole point of, you know, help first, is what?What's kind of like the three point plan that you can get to here and a fewthoughts. And I'd like I really like to get you guys, you know, going on thisand maybe have Joe have you may be digging on the messaging part of this,but we think that there's three things to be thinking about, you know, firstof all, how to optimize your messaging and what are some specific things youcan do? You can see that we have those wind out there, you know? Do you use aconsultant? Well, sure. You know, consultants like me like it when youuse consultants, But you could do some of this stuff yourself to, you know, Doyou? You know, Then you build out the ecosystem, know what's out there. Youknow, be aware of your options in terms of Martek and content systems. And then,of course, empower the talent there. This isn't just a plug it, you know?What is it? We always say this is not set it and forget it. Ron. Paul, Appeal.This is going to take some effort by some by some heavy lifters and probablysome talent that your bank may have thought of not thought about payingthat much over the years and sort of...

...doing this. But, Joe, I know you put somuch work in this first piece of helping people craft messages and callsto action and getting that into their assets that they can then put intoplace whether they're Federated throughout the bank or whether theyhave a central market and how that works. What do your thoughts on that?Yeah. So number one I think first of all these steps are are all criticaland none of this is a one time. Let's do this project and then we're finished,right These air, very iterative things that for, you know, for all practicalpurposes, you're you're on a journey of constant improvement and optimizationoff these core capabilities and systems. And you have to understand, I alwaysthink you guys say this a lot, and which is the reason we're huge Fans ofboth you guys do is you meet organizations where they're at rightwherever, there, that iss. Okay. And so, if your step one is in many caseslooking at looking at your customer journey that you have for yourdifferent personas and then understanding what is the communicationthat is going out and in that means messaging. In many cases, that might beemails that might be social posts. It might be direct mail, but how are youcommunicating with that customer? Look, all relationships, the quality of everyrelationship in anything boils down to the quality of the communication. Andif you don't have that nail, then it's really hard to to get to the to thenext thing right. So I think is step one. That's that's a criticallyimportant component. And the first thing that we would advise whethersomebody is working with us or not, if they just I mean, we have a lot ofconversations where hey, if we could be helpful and give some free advice, welove doing that right? So that would always be a logical first step is kindof audit your customer journey. Look at how you're communicating with yourexisting customers and then identify sort of the quick winds from that listof that review that you just did. And then I think, in terms of how can wecreate progress in 60 90 days? Right? So that's kind of that's Step oneaddresses that and then, of course, building the ecosystem. I mean, we'vewe've invested tens of millions of dollars and continue to invest tens ofmillions of dollars in building an open platform because the word ecosystem isso important. Whatever technology that you have has to be compatible andflexible and a p I first so that you can integrate data sources and toolsbecause there may be new marketing technology and in some solution thatwill solve one specific problem really well is your organization have afoundation that can spend that up quickly and get it deployed? That'shaving getting that ecosystem right? So that's critical. And then, of course,empowering your talent. This is This is James Robert. I love your feedback onthis, but ultimately I think this is one where we see organizations strugglehere a little bit. In some ways, it's because they want to try to create,take the roles the people that they have today and force them into thesenew roles that they really need. In some cases, it works, but in some casesyou've gotta hire a different skill set, which is uncomfortable for a lot ofparticularly the smaller organizations. I've been thinking a lot about thiswriting a lot about this. Speaking a lot about this over the last 6 to 8months, and what this bulls down to is at the heart of it is transformation.You know, we we are looking at developing and gaining new capabilities,creating some new capacities on the talent side, and when we try to movesomeone from the past into the future, if they don't have clarity of what thatfuture even looks like. It's very easy to want to stay in what I call the caveof complacency where it's safe. It's comfortable. But my call to action forfinancial brand marketing cells and leadership teams is to come out of thecave of complacency. Complacency, come out with courage, come out withconfidence. But a lot of this is going to begin by gaining insight into whatthe opportunities are. So when I when I look at this idea of transformation,training, training is really at the heart of transformation, and it's that,like like this whole system that you've laid out here, it's not a one and doneevent training will continuously happen as the digital space evolves at anexponential pace with in the years to come. E I like the I like the comfortcave analogy. I mean, you know, hashtag come out of the cave. I think the otherthing is maybe hashtag drive people out of the cave. It's no longer comfortable,and I think the one thing that I think is really dis discomforting to seniorbank executives, they're used to...

...thinking about lenders and branchmanagers and resident producers. But when they think about somebody who's adata scientist or a digital content person, they still think about a costline. It's an expensive. It's on the piano. They look at it as an expense,right? Yeah. I mean, this is fine. This is a financial accounting industry. Welooked at the P and L. But this this is something we have to break through witha management accounting mindset that says the P and L is not gonna servicehere. We have to look at this a new way. I want to address that I like. I likedriving them out of the cave with a stick. Yeah, you know, way might noteven have to drive them out of the cave. We could just ask them to look aroundat all The skeletons and the corpse that are in the cave from those thatfailed Thio have the courage to transform their mindset. I thinkmindset is so critical with this, because when we traditionally thinkabout marketing and cells into your point, when you think about cells, it'sthe branch manager, it's the lender. It's not just sells doing this alone,and it's not just marketing from the Old World sense of promotion andplacing ads and billboards. It's marketing and sells, aligning around anew perspective, something that we call the growth team. And so it's it'sunification because marketing has typically been been driven by a certainperspective, cells has been driven by a certain perspective. But when you canunify both around a common purpose, that's a transformational experience,No question. Yeah, E think I've heard you talk of this a little bit aboutthis in terms of the human element of this and trying to trying to tie it alltogether. And I wonder if you could kind of take us through. The Joe wouldlike to get your take on this, too, is I know, James. Robert, you've kind ofgot this whole, you know, kind of laid out into a framework that you'vewritten about as an author. Could you kind of take us through this a littlebit? Absolutely. I think a lot of times in this digital world, we all talkabout this idea of technology. Technology is just a tool that connectsand brings people together. But what what we're really focused on is twosides of this equation. We have the digital experience, and the digitalexperience, once again is about systems and processes, and we can break thedigital experience up into three subset experiences. You have the leadexperience. You have the customer experience, which is really big in theconversational space today. And then you have another untapped opportunity,which is the referral experience, or activating what we would traditionallycall our net promoters to go out and refer their friends and family. Youknow, turn that insight into action. On the other side, though, we have thehuman experience, and this is what I mentioned before. The human experienceis really two things. It's help, and it's hope, and that's multipliedthrough empathy. And when you can bring both sides of those equations typicallydelivered through the digital channels, that's the exponential multiplier thatwe're looking for four financial brands. Yeah, we we discussed the topic calledreally operationalize ing empathy. How do you get empathy into theorganization? And it's really the you know, the huge advantage that so manyof the organizations that that we all work with have is they have reallyincredible people, right and So if you think about digital transformation,historically, a lot of the people in these organizations they get they getsort of nervous about becoming obsolete. We'll you're bringing in automation to,you know, get rid of, you know, get rid of things. Certainly there areefficiencies that can be had by technology. But really, where the magicis the exponential things, the exponential for the force multiplierthings are when you can enhance the ability for the people in yourorganization to connect and serve mawr intelligently with MAWR empathy. If youcan empower that through technology and drive it, that's really an excitingthing to witness happen. And in the transformations of some of these bestrun organizations that we see are they're doing that, it's it's just veryrewarding for them as an organization. And when people have, you know theability to connect and serve customers better and bring your bringing out thebest in them and you're creating a better outcome for the consumer. It's awin win all the way around. I like what you said about operational izingempathy and really, you know, I think that complements what what I think alot about which is operational. Izing expertise in both empathy and expertisecan be delivered through experiences, and I think it's important to know whatis an experience and experience. Experience is just, ah bunch of systemsand processes that have been number one well defined and thought out. Numbertwo applied. And here's the secret Number three. These experiences must beoptimized over a period of time because they will result in one of two things.Either a a positive emotion or be a negative emotion. And a lot of thiscomes back to what Sam was finishing before. This is about making depositsinto a consumer's what I call a...

...consumers trust fund that sits betweentheir brains. And it could take months years to deposit enough trust to wherethey take action to make that commitment with your financial brainsplit second to destroy it, right? If you if you send them a message that'sout of context, you send them an email that looks like you don't know who thehell they are, where you give them an offer that's that's not in alignmentwith where they're at In the financial journey, you could just destroy any ofthat trust that you've built up, and I was seeing a lot of that coming out ofcovert with a lot of email communication, ramping up email. Ithink it's still the workhorse of what we call the digital growth engine,because that is where you know we have all these different channels, buteverything typically comes back to email. I'm looking at emails about toexperience its its second it oration. Within the next couple of years, theyalmost another golden age because we're we could get much smarter with emailcommunication through data through analytics, through insights and contentabsolutely through through watching what's happening with your messaging.If you If you have systems and you have a an ecosystem in a text back in placethat can give you the view of what's actually happening in our how are yourcustomers opening your content? Are they engaging with what's happeningnext? I want to back up just one moment because you said something that wasreally powerful and and in terms of, you know, the expertise and the empathyand the expertise component, and I think about the fact that consumersdon't really care about your expertise. Unless you have shown them some empathy,unless they know you understand them and care of them care about them. Andso you have to do you have to have both, right? You have to have the ability ifyou have to have context about where your customer is, so that you canappropriately demonstrate empathy before they're gonna listen to yourexpertise. And we see a lot of organizations get that context piecewrong, which allows them to or or prevents them, I should say, from notdisplaying empathy. And then it doesn't matter how great the advice is. If youburn that, they're not going to give you that second chance. Yeah, I take astep back and I come back from the consumer. Come back inside the bank.Joe, I know something you and I have talked a lot about is the differenceswithin banks where they have, you know, they don't have a chief sales officer.Typically, some of them moved to achieve banking officer, but more oftenthan not, revenue leadership is Federated throughout the bank. And itoccurred to me you know so much of our marketing in community banks and creditunions has been, if we could be candidates, been very deposit oriented.Nothing wrong with that. But it's been very deposit, of course, in Cove itMost banks are sitting around credit unions, air flush with deposits rightnow, but interestingly, that the you know, the chief sales officer of mostbank banks and credit. And it's probably the chief lending officer bethe closest one to that. So you kind of a little bit of a disconnect with youhave these kind of strong, entrepreneurial, hard charging mortgageand commercial leaders over here that just are looking for deals. And thenyou've got marketing expertise over here on the other side. That's largelybeen around, you know, basically getting checking accounts, and it'sit's interesting. It's almost like there needs to be a We are the worldmoment where everybody gets together and shares at the conference from tablefor allowed to do that again and just kind of be honest about what we don'tknow about one another's competencies. I think that's great perspective andyou you ultimately you definitely see that that clearly different worlds andalmost it's like different universe in some cases to where you've got themarketing organization and the sales and lending organizations. The peopletaking care of the consumers and and marketing is treated as sales supportor for a lot of lending organizations. And I agree from an institutionstandpoint, it's many cases geared towards deposits and things like that,and what it hasn't been geared towards is how do we How do we enable the wholecustomer life cycle to be optimized? Right? And it's the orchestration ofthe communication, messaging and things that come out of marketing, along withthe people that really deliver those special experiences. And if you thinkabout why does everybody why the you know why does every organization If youtalk to all the executives out there, why is it that customer experience isstill at the number one top of their their priority list? And ultimately,it's because the experience is what is going to drive loyalty or lack ofloyalty? Right? And it's that loyalty, that ability to have a long termrelationship with that consumer is where all of the profiting growth comesfrom long term, right. So it's you have to look at things differently today,certainly than than what people in the industry did 20 years ago. I said, Youbring up a really good point. You know,...

...we're traditionally marketing has beena support role for cells. Marketing in this digital space is really it's ademand generator. They can create the demand for the cells team. And if wecan define those roles more, practically speaking, what is marketingtwo things. It's controlling the brand of the experience, and it's to generateleads. Then cells can pick up those leads, nurture those leads and thenconvert those leads over a period of time. And you have to have both sidesof the equation once again the digital experience in the human experienceworking together. And I think that's that's why we're so big on this idea ofbeing in the lining around a purpose, really beyond promoting just products,or are and putting the transformation of people over transactions. Becausepeople are confused about money, people confused about their financialsituation, and they're looking for someone to guide them beyond that to abigger, better, brighter future. Yeah, I'll just point out one key gap that wesee a lot of times guys and and and we we all look at in the way we work withthese. Some of these brands is ultimately, you want to try to identifygaps where they can have some quick winds and make big progress. Right? Soone of the key things and James Robert, I think traditionally this comes frommarketing does generate leads. You send out an email blast. Ah, batch and blast,maybe, which is sort of the traditional methodology for marketing a lot oforganizations. They fire an email, campaign out something, somebody raisestheir hand. It gets kicked over to somebody who then is going to engagewith that consumer. But where we see the ball dropped is then what happensto that consumer or that lead or that opportunity? If they don't Trans Actordecided to move forward right away. If they don't respond right away, manytimes it's where it falls. That's where falls apart, right? I want to speakvery practically to this because this is one of the biggest pain points thatwe see is well through some of the studies that we conduct. You know, when,when, when you compare community financial brand, whether that be acommunity bank or credit Union and you're looking in your secret shopping,say, the mortgage experience or even the checking experience. And someonestarts the application and they fall off or they abandoned or someone raisestheir hand. And they have a question, and it takes sometimes 3 to 5 days forcells to then follow up with that person. But then you compare that to,say, a fintech who's following up within the 1st 24 hours, and it justdoesn't stop there. Then it will continue on for sometimes 3 to 6 monthsthrough an automated workflow coming back to your point earlier, providingthe right content with the right context based upon their own uniquebuying situation. Yeah, it's almost like it's almost like on the wheel herethat you you put together here, James Robert of and purchasing on board.There should be like a little there should be like a little off ramp herethat says this is where it goes off the rails and somebody institutionssomewhere between purchase and on board. But before advocacy could ever actuallytake hold, you you kind of really lose the mojo. Yes, you were trying to dioSorry I wasn't trying to interrupt. You know, I was same. Same topic and seemthat I was going to talk about is ultimately, there's. There's placesalong the way that there are clear gaps where the ball is dropped and andthere's there's the good news is for many organizations, there's there'ssome pretty simple things that they can put in place from a process and atechnology standpoint to incrementally improve in that area pretty quicklybecause, ah, lot of organizations have a very distinct sort of transition.When somebody inquires on something, if they're not, they don't move throughthe funnel and become a customer right right away. Many times they get theyget forgotten about and the vast majority and depending on the businessline. But the vast majority of those consumers will end up transacting witha different institution. Yeah, one of the best examples that I've heard comesfrom four seasons around this point. Automate the predictable humanize theexceptional, and I hear branch managers lamenting the fact of you know what? Igot all of these leads in my pipe. I just don't have time to follow up withthem. That's what automation can come in help to rank and prioritize who iswhat and where in that buying journey. So that now, as a human being, I canreach out to those who are really at the right time to get that humancontext. That human touch point. Really interesting. Yeah, I know. James,Robert, you put a lot. I mean, we've got a lot of models here to kind ofthink through. That helped kind of tell the story or the journey of progress.And I wonder if you could take us through this strategy circle here thatI that I know that you put a lot of work into. Yes, So it's how do we makethe intangible tangible? And that's where the models How do we simplify thecomplexity of all of this? That's where the models come in. And and Banker isan acronym to where we're looking at at...

...six distinct areas of operationalefficiency to communicate empathy to share expertise. And the very firststep in all of this is to build an audience with data. And the whole goalof this is to drive traffic to what must become the most profitable sourceof growth source of revenue, which is a website that sells not just a glorifiedonline brochure but a website that sells, and it's focused on legion andlead acquisition. So what do we do next? Now that we're driving, trafficmarketing can then attract em que els or marketing qualified lead withpersonalized offers based upon someone's either a digital exhaust ordigital behavior, or be there transactional behavior in thetransactional Data. The third point. As we attract thes marketing, qualifiedleads, every lead is gonna be in a different stage, and this is where wecan begin to nurture. Those leads with automation and context and content comeinto play because we have to make those micro deposits and the consumers trustbank to increase that trust over time. Because from that point now cells canbegin to convert those leads for loans and deposits. And then to the point ofwhat we're talking about before the journey is really Onley beginningbecause we spend so much time effort and energy has financial brands to goand and drag these leads in and convert these leads. But then we have to givethem a positive on board on boarding experience to expand thoserelationships and the way that we do that is by delighting accounts. We haveto make them continue to feel good, to affirm, to reinforce their decision todo business with us. Because then and Onley then do we have permission to askthem to refer their friends to rate us on Google or to review us thatexperience? And then that referral repeats the entire cycle all over again.So marketing attracts. Yeah, marketing attracts cells, engages and servicedelights. What do you see here, Joe? What jumps out at you, You know,ultimately, I mean, this is this is such a great slide. I'm looking at ithere on my laptop with a little more little more detail. But, you know, Ithink it's just so well done in the way it's it lays it out, and I think thepart about the magic that can happen in Step five and six, where you'reexpanding relationships by delighting accounts and then repeat with ratingsreviews and referrals. Those two steps can drive so much growth and value foran organization. Yet so many don't ever have the opportunity to get to thatpoint because they dropped the ball somewhere right and and through thatinitial parts of the journey, maybe they do a certain step wrong. But theway there sort of connecting everything together and orchestrating things.There's a gap somewhere, a lot of times that prevents them from getting to thatpoint. And and sometimes it's it's just really driving the workflow to to kindof create that next action to have that that sort of human touch insertedsomewhere, right? Like maybe it's a hey, a text message saying Hey, thanks foryou know, thanks for checking in with us and enquiring about whicheverproduct people are still going into branches. Obviously somebody stops byhaving a message go out that feels very personalized. Those are the types ofthings that can really in a in a instant, elevate the experience ofconsumer has to to a place of wow, that was that was personal. They actuallycared about me as a human versus just I wanna open another account. I want todo another loan and rifle you through the you know, the assembly line, so tospeak. Yeah, the whole goal of the Bankers Strategy Circle is to provide aframework for what I call digital consumer journey mapping, because whenwe look at historically speaking journey mapping, it's typically justfocusing on one of these elements. But it's all of these elements workingtogether as, ah, hole. The sum is greater than its parts. And and I thinkJoe What? When? When you're unpacking those insights. There's three things toconsider when it comes to digital Consumer Journey mapping three keyquestions Because because journey mapping is an exercise in empathy andthe first question to just ask and consider is from the lens of theconsumer. Where do you want me to go? Number one? Number two. How will youhelp me get there? And the number three? How will that make me feel? And if wecan keep those three questions at the top of our mind when mapping out theseexperiences and empathy, these experiences and expertise, we willcontinue down towards a path of digital growth. Nothing else. If you're abanker out there and you think that...

...credit is science and operations of theBank of Science, but sales and marketing is somehow another, a guruthing or a Svengali thing. What you're looking at here is the engineering ofthe mashup of sales and marketing into a process in every single one of thesethings is measurable, just like loan loss, just like any other aspect of thebanking process. And so I would encourage bankers to peel this apartand look for things that you can measure here. You know what is yourspeed? To authenticate a new account all the way down to anak tive debitcard? You know how many leads are you converting into into applications? Mostbankers know how many applications convert into close loans because theyhave to know that for compliance reasons. But usually if you ask abouthow many leads they get that don't get qualified, it's Hominy, Hominy, Hominy,Hominy. It's a it's a black hole. And so I would encourage people or or afield of opportunity. However you look, how about that? Yeah, yeah, let's closeon a positive note, and I and I, you guys, this has been This has reallybeen a lot of fun. Yes, this was such a fun conversation, and I reallyappreciated the good question. Sam asked. Joe and I. So do you have aquestion? A digital marketing a digital cells question that you'd like answersto on a future podcast episode. Now is the time to get out your phone textwith that question to 4155793004 That's 4155793004 Text me your digitalmarketing your digital Selves Question. And remember, the Onley bad question isthe question that goes unasked until next time and is always be Well, dogood and wash your hands. Thank you for listening to anotherepisode of Banking on Digital Growth with James Robert Ley. Like what youhear? Tell a friend about the podcast and leave us a review on Apple podcasts,Google Podcast or Spotify and subscribe while you're there to get even. MawrPractical in proven insights, visit www dot digital growth dot com to grab apreview of James Roberts bestselling book Banking on Digital Growth or ordera copy right now for you and your team from Amazon. Inside, you'll find astrategic marketing and sales blueprint framed around 12 key areas of focusthat empower you to confidently generate 10 times more loans anddeposits until next time, be well and do good.

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