Banking on Digital Growth
Banking on Digital Growth

Episode · 1 year ago

50) #DigitalGrowthJourneys: People and Purpose w/ Jonathan Clay

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this episode of Banking on Digital Growth, we continue our Digital Growth Journey series, as we talk with Jonathan Clay, the Digital Marketing Associate at Louisiana Federal Credit Union. Jonathan and his team are relentlessly focused on two things: People and purpose.

In this episode, we talk all about:

  • Why every team member is required to have a “What’s my why?” story.
  • How a brand-new process allowed them to close 74 additional loans, and why that process nearly came to a halt.
  • How the “pre-app” process is allowing them to get to know their customers better than ever before.
  • Why perfection is often the enemy of progress, and what Jonathan and his team are doing to combat that mindset.

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, and I'mexcited to share Jonathan Clay's digital Growth Journey story with youin a moment. Jonathan is a digital marketing associate at Louisiana FC youand he has such a great story to tell, because I've watched Jonathan elevatehis digital marketing capabilities. He's elevated his knowledge year afteryear since he first attended one of our digital growth training programs inHouston, which was about five years ago. And since that time, I've been guidingJonathan and his team along their digital growth journey. Watching themall make tremendous progress. All create tremendous value for theirfinancial brand. Quarter after quarter, year after year, Jonathan is really atrue testament. That transformation begins with training and education.Enjoy the show You're listening to Banking on DigitalGrowth with James Robert Ley Ah, podcast that empowers financial brandmarketing, sales and leadership teams to maximize their digital growthpotential by generating 10 times more loans and deposits. Today's episode ispart of the digital growth journeys. Siri's, where James Robert uncovers andexplorers some of the industry's biggest digital marketing and salesstories of success. Let's get into the show Greetings and hello, I am JamesRobert Lay, your digital anthropologist, and I'd like to welcome you to the 50thepisode of the Banking on Digital Growth Podcast. My, my, my, how timesure does fly because we have reached the halfway point to 100 episodes thatshare knowledge transfer insights provide you with inspiration as Icommit to continue to guide you and your financial brand along your digitalgrowth journey. And for that I'd like...

...to thank you, dear listener, forjoining me on today's episode. Speaking of journeys, because it is part of thedigital growth journey, Siri's and I'm excited to welcome Jonathan Clay fromLouisiana FC you to the show. And as you are the digital marketing associateat Louisiana FC you What is one thing that you're working on right now,Jonathan, that has you most excited? Oh, um, I think the biggest project thatwe're working on, I say biggest meeting. My biggest excitement with the projectis, um, we're working on a budgeting project. Currently, it's really reallife practical application of budgeting that makes sense to the everyday person.Um, our CEO mia has a saying that a checking account side of sexy productand we're just to stop along the way. Um, Star Team is currently working on abudgeting landing page that partners with the savings challenge. And it justkind of encourages our members and our customers to take practical steps tosay for those goals and just to practice good savings habits. And it'sreally fun, just kind of to give them a Y behind or what? That's a That's aguiding force of our institution is to understand why we do what we dio andhelp that help make that practical time members. So it's just really fun towork those projects. And because I've seen your personal growth over the year,along with your team's growth, your credit names, growth, I think you're insuch a good place to build upon really a strong foundation and get some MAWRexponential capabilities within the next 12 to 18 months. Around thisperspective, we're not gonna get into the details of that. Excuse me as theycontinue to unfold, but it's just gonna be interesting toe watch this nextphase as you go down that path. Speaking of growth, I would say you'vereally transcended the idea of a digital market or quote unquote intosomething greater than I see, I I really believe more financial brandmarketing teams need, and that is what...

I'm gonna call. I'm gonna call you anew title. I'm gonna give you the title of an empathetic experience, engineerbecause all of this, all of your doing is really focused around one thing onDo you alluded to it before? But that's people. So you talked about people andyou talked about purpose provides some more perspective for the audience abouthow people and purpose drive the work that you're doing at the credit union. Well, I think that, um, one of of thattitle, but I think that that actually starts with something personal. Ah,personal life for myself is something I like to do. Is a person is signed waysto make the lives of others around me easier, Um, and understanding wherepeople are because everyone has their own story. Everyone's on their ownjourney. And it was very important to me to do work that contribute to that.Because if I don't feel like I'm contributing for greater purpose orgreater good, then I kind of feel like I'm just spinning our wheels, doingnothing and what I like to do that the cool thing about how our digital growthjourney has kind of transpired is that I with that website, it's Ah, a websitethat sells. That's a fancy way of saying we could see user behavior and Ican see well, people are clicking around on the website. What are theirinterests are and it allows me to dig deeper, asks the question. Why? Why arepeople looking at personal loans at this time of year? Why people lookingat other loans and the driving force behind what I do? The purpose behindwhat I do is understand that this person may come to my website lookingfor alone, but that's not really what I'm selling to them. I'm selling themthe idea of peace of mind. And hey, this is just a set like our taglinehere in the organization. This is helping you get there. This is a stepto help you get there so that you can focus on line first. That's I tried tokeep that question at the back of my mind for everything that I'm doing,moved beyond just the marketing side of...

...it. And just into the empathetic, Iguess. Psychological behavior, the person understanding where they are.Yeah. You know, you mentioned something that I think is really critical forothers to pick up on. And that one of your key roles is to simplify thecomplexities of digital's to educate others as well. And you've mentionedthis purpose a few times with this. Why I wasn't a year or two ago, you guyshad a transformative purpose workshop or a why workshop that helped toeducate others into the greater meanings of where you were going alongthis digital growth journey. How did that help tear down? What we wouldtraditionally see is like internal silos. Um, OK, that's a wonderful question. Soabout two years ago, really? Briefly, our senior leadership got the stuff alltogether for training date. And we, uh we did a deep dive in studying on SimonSimon sending start with white. And basically the short of it is you have15 seconds to tell the person what you do. How do you explain that in a waythat's clear and concise us implementing the Y statement of ourorganization, which is to help people so that they can focus on life. First.Kind of unified our entire staff around this idea that you're not. You're notjust to tell you none of them. I saw you're not a marketer, Granata, adirector. You you are a person who is here to help people so that they couldfocus on life first, having that be a guiding force. And then I want tomention also, it's a guiding force. But a practice that we do internally isthat every staff member is required to submit what we call why. Stories andthese Y stories are basically just a moment to take a step away from the dayto day duties of your job and talk about how you help someone, whetherit's internal or external, by making that a mandate, which is actually kindof fun to do because you have to look for opportunities to help others. Butmaking that a mandate we have now...

...created this this sense of unityinternally that every staff meeting, I think we'll have one here tomorrow.Actually, we get together and get to hear all these different stories of howas simple as a teller or possibly is greater. The CEO not to say that thoseair levels here, but how they help some blood. And it just reminds us of why wecome here every day. You're with your co workers. Yeah. No, you you talkedabout look for opportunities to help others. There's that empatheticperspective coming out with just the way that you're communicating. Sohaving that not only be within the marketing department but expandedthroughout top the bottom bottom to top is what I believe is one of the reasonsthat you guys have made so much progress over the past years. Speakingof progress, on the flip side, there are challenges and roadblocks thatyou've had to eliminate. I often liken this to legacy thinking, like if itisn't broke, don't fix it, or that's the way we've always done it. E canthink of so many traditional brands that have been brought down because ofthat limited perspective Borders, blockbuster, Kodak and even morerecently, one near and dear to my heart, Toys R Us. How have you been able toovercome this limited mindset? That is just I, I feel, has the potential to bethe death knell or to be so deadly for others. Well, I'm fortunate enough towork for a new organization. That's very excellence driven. Um, and whatthat means is we tend to come up a lot of really cool ways to get the job done.But with that, you know, we have this thing, Um, where we just kind of tryingto simplify processes. We went. Think about three years ago. Now we went on a,um, ID aid migration. Marie Tree leaned everything out. The problem with thatIs there a sense a problem? But the...

...challenge with that is, is that onceyou leave something out, you kind of get used to it being status quo. And Ithink that the way we've overcome that is we realized that that's an ongoingjourney. It's not a one and done. You don't leave something out one time andthat's it. It's just a continual refocus internally say okay, great.That worked this this area in this area in this time period and the supersuccessful being willing to take a step back and say How can we improve uponthat just to make it easier both for the Internet, external customer like.So I guess the answer is, is simply realizing that it's an ongoingconversation and you don't stop with one time. You know you've You've got somuch practical wisdom right there because I think a lot of financialbrands I've talked so many times before. They get stuck in the doing of digitalthat they don't take time to stop, pause, learn about what they've beenworking on, how to apply those learnings through the thinking so thatwhenever whenever they do it again, they do it even that much better. Butwhat you're talking about is a critical step of review and refinement. Youactually have a practical example of that with a new internal process calledpre APS that I feel like has been a transformative experience. What hasthat process look like for you at Louisiana? Well, initially, that that's actuallythe perfect example. Initially, about 2.5, maybe three years ago, we rolledout to create process, which is simply asking for high level regenerationinformation at the start of an application. What the purpose of makingsure if a person starts an application, they finish it. I like it to theshopping cart mindset people. You put stuff in your shopping cart on Amazon,but you're not entirely ready to commit. Well, we piled it that program in 2017or 18, I believe. And because of implementing that, we were able tocapture 74 additional. Also, we normally would not have captured Well,fast forward. One little hiccup happens, which is the status quo with digital.As things grow and evolve, new ways of doing things come up and you gotta yougotta be a flexible adjustable. And it...

...created some internal fear, I would say,and we turned it off. And it was an argument that this is an extra step andand when we're slowing, remembers down. So it just took times, like I said,going back to the chopping block and say, Hey, listen, here's how this hasbenefited us. Here's how we can grow from it. This is the additional leadswere able to catch operate. This is the importance behind it. So it took me andall the stakeholders getting in one room whiteboard hit out and showingthem the process from start to finish and then the benefit of the process andnow is he go to way of doing things when it comes to application processes?Because now I'm able to re target members who started application anddon't finish it and just educate them and nurture them because not everybodyis ready toe to click buy when they when they stick something in theircarts. We gotta, you know, understand why members are the Met there. Yeah,the process you're talking about is probably one of the quickest winds offinancial brand can experience to maximize their digital growth. Becausewe we see abandonment rates for online applications, whether it be for a loanproduct or deposit a new account, be between 85 90 92 sometimes upwards of95% for one reason or another. Thes air traditionally things that are beyondthe control of the financial brand. But by deploying this pre app and thenoptimizing it, you've really created exponential value every step of the way.But you had to not only be an empathetic experience engineer for theprospect, you also had to be a nem, pathetic experience educator forinternal team members as well. Correct. So I think that's a really key lessonit's you're playing really two roles. You're developing systems and processesthat are external facing, but you're also having to educate others into whycoming back to your point with, like with Simon cynic, Why are we doing thisfirst and foremost, and then you can...

...talk about the what and the how. Yeah,correct. Yeah, Technology has transformed our world, and digital haschanged the way consumers shop for and buy financial services forever. Nowconsumers make purchase decisions long before they walk into a branch if theywalk into a branch at all. But your financial brand still wants to growloans and deposits. We get it. Digital growth can feel confusing, frustratingand overwhelming for any financial brand marketing and sales leader. Butit doesn't have thio because James Robert wrote the book that guides youevery step of the way along your digital growth journey. Visit www dotdigital growth dot com to get a preview of his best selling book, Banking onDigital Growth, or order a copy right now for you and your team from Amazon.Inside, you'll find a strategic marketing manifesto that was written totransform financial brands, and it is packed full of practical and proveninsights you can start using today to confidently generate 10 times moreloans and deposits. Now back to the show. You know, you've hearing you talkthrough this. You really have fought the good fight every step away alongthis journey because I often compared digital growth to, say, running amarathon or defeating the giant beast or monster, the monster typically beinga well, I think like if you look at the story of of Pinocchio, right, the welland and even with narrative art type structures, the well was named Monstrothe monster. So what have you done in your own journey to defeat the beast ofdigital overwhelming or digital distraction? Well, first of all, thatthat was a process within itself. I think that kind of in keeping with thismindset of the beast being a whale eating well, bite by bite. Melinda may,um and realistically, when we first...

...started this journey, it was a bitoverwhelming. But what I've learned to do and what I found the most success inis actually it's a step I've taken from you. Good is the enemy of greatestenemy of good. You have to get something to place where it's excellentand and it's craftsmanship. But you're not trying to go for a home run on thefirst start because digital is a beast of a project. You can't just throw itall out there and expected to all work. So you get it to a state where it'sit's serving its purpose, its alleviating pain points, both Internetsort of customers. And then you you go through a period of 30 to 90 days andthen you reassess. Okay, how can we improve upon this process? So for me,it's launched the project, assess it, review it and then optimize it overtime and you start to do that with each project and then you look back like,Wow, we pulled off some amazing stuff that when we saw it on the punch list,it seems impossible. But as of today, all those things are not complete itand one of the things that that you've talked about before, even with the preop process and I've seen you do this multiple times piloting, pilotingsomething before it becomes like the new the new status quo before that getstransformed and made even that much better going forward. How has pilotingthings been helpful for you? And really probably, I'd say, helpful for othersbecause it's it's that incremental steps. It's that incremental growgrowth moving in the right direction without we'll call it. We're gonna getsomething 80% there. And what Seth Godin talks about in some of his talksis we just got to ship it like Like just get it out, get 80% there. Keepthat standard of excellence to use your words. But we still have to ship andnot get bogged down in perfectionism. How do you communicate that to otherswho might be? Perfection is by default like I am. So that's an excellentquestion. Um, I would like to say that...

...the process is kind of in the framework.Why I see it as our biggest digital win. It's a framework for basically all ofour piloting programs and how we continue to elevate and optimize thosethings. The way that the piloting part of that process has worked is that youkind of it's kind of a cheat code. If I can call it that, you pilot it with asmaller project or a smaller team, get them to see the benefit of it. And thenyou create them as your internal advocates for why something works. Youroll it out and then and internally when it's just something marketingrelated. I'm not working with another team. Roll it out on one product linewe start with. I think I started the process with new autos only we capturedthat went great and then we moved on to credit card. Well, at that point you'renow create. Your work is creating your argument for you. So you go back to usperfection. Instead, I said, I work for excellence driven organization, so ifthey hear launched it 80% and we'll get to 20% later that initially to the earsand like, No, we can't do that. That's why we operate. But when you do thatand that doesn't say, sacrifice the excellence and and the hard work, whenyou get it to a place that's workable and approved, then you can let yourwork create the case in the argument for them and say, Hey, look, this ishow we rolled it up thus far. This is a success of it. Let's roll it out hereand then we'll add it. Add things to this original first pilot program.That's kind of how it's worked out for me. I think that's a big big differencethan how many financial brands traditionally have operated in.Something that you've brought to the table is being able to prove andquantify time and time and time and time again, the value that marketing iscreating for the organization, because I hear it from financial marketersevery single day. I'm a cost center. I'm I'm a glorified in house FedExKinko's. I'm I'm kids that play with...

...painting crayons, but quantifiable eyou're proving value day in and day out. What has been some of thosequantifiable winds beyond? Yeah, we're making progress. We're checking thingsoff the list and we're optimizing them. But how are you proving the value ofmarket? Because that's one thing. If financial markers can solve thatproblem, they can start writing their own checks. Well, I think, uh, someexamples of quantifiable group um, last year we had a corporate goal Thio bringin deposits, and initially it was seen as this big lost the thing thathonestly, just we have honest conversations with ourselves internally,like this is lost the gold guys. I don't know if we're gonna need it, So Ikind of put a big ask out there is like, Hey, what if we from the procurementprocess and we tie that with digital leads on Facebook and, um, we tie theseassets that we know that we're really good at doing and we just put it outthere, Um, so I can say, over the course of the year 2019, I think webought in between the three or four deposited campaigns about 16 million,and the goal is 20. So, in addition to the other campaigns and and things thatwere going on and, of course, the frontline staff and the call centerbringing in money, we actually met the goal that we were expected not to meetbecause we trusted the process. We tested it, we proved it. We trusted it.And we were able to put data points behind that say, Hey, look, it'sworking. Let's keep doing it on. But just comes with establishing that trustwith leadership. Just really. It's It's exciting to see those things cometogether We're like, You're like, OK, you've accepted in your heart. Hey,this may or may not work but I'm willing to try and willing to give itall I got And then when it actually pans out like this week, this isawesome. We actually did it. And I think another key lesson hearing youdialogue and talk through this is big lofty goals, but we start to breakthose down into smaller, bite sized...

...chunks. Melinda may eat the well biteby bite working through not a a yearly strategy because we have to be agile.We have to be nimble when market opportunities come up. But theperspective of, like 90 days, this is what we're gonna focus on over the next90 days has helped Thio communicate internally like this is what we'regonna do now and then we'll worry about everything once we get to the next 90day sprint. More or less. One of the other things that that I'm thinkingabout two hearing you talk. You've talked about lending. You've talkedabout senior leadership. Digital growth is not a journey that you travel alone.It's it's one that you travel with a team How have you been able to helpguide others along? You talked about like white boarding and educating, buthelping them see the bigger, better future that you're wanting to create.Because before this conversation, you mentioned something around ah, holidayloan campaign where marketing broke lending. That sounds like a prettynegative perspective. Yeah, So marketing broke landing? Yeah, we gotsome Not so great. There's no hallway. What happened was in the past, we had aholiday long campaign that we offer. It's a simple personal loan that weoffer packages as a Christmas loan. In previous years, we've done it and it'sgot decent traction. But like I said, it was good enough. So why change itwith the implementation of the creative process and making it honestly taking aprobably six step process down here? One or two step process we went from, Ithink, ah, 100 applications in total in 28 17 2018, 990 cool applications. 2019,1123 Now, the reason we started saying that we broke lending was because theywere so busy and that was only off of two emails. It wasn't This wasn't likea over in the inundating. Our...

...membership. This was two emails that wesent out. But it was target in such a way that it hit our audience in thefields, if you will. And, um, we got a lot of traction on it. Well, myself, inanother number of our markets, seeing Lindsay we went downstairs and talkedto landing was like, What? Guys? We understand that this is a bit stressful.It's a lot more than we're used to. But you have to remember you're not here toprocess loans. You're not here. Um, getting paperwork done. You're puttingChristmas morning Christmas cheer under People Street. So with that in mind,keep fighting to get these things done because you don't know how much thissimple act of you doing one simple task is making someone else's A year, month,morning. And that was kind of the focus. We all made it. We pulled it off and itwas really awesome. Yeah, you took a negative situation, transformed it intoa positive one from a few different perspectives. And the quantifiableresult was really 10 x growth, something that I'm a big proponent of,And the reason I think you're able to do that. Not once, but twice is you hada reusable marketing asset, Um, that you were ableto pull off the shelf andreapply, but reapply and make it even that much better talk to me aboutbecause that's been a big thing that you've been working on is trying tobuild reusable assets that can give you leverage that can give you threeexponential factor. Because every marketer is limited with time. Why tryto reinvent the wheel whenever you could build something that has someshelf life on it? You know, I think we have an excellent example of that, um,again 2017. It was a very transformative year for 2017 becausethis is That was the year that I mentioned before the process was kindof the foundation for all of our digital organizations. And I say thatto say that in 2017 we rolled out a lot of assets for auto refi campaign. Thepre process, different things like that that are now reusable in the sense thatwe look at these seeing processes again,...

...improve upon updated taken off theshelf, get it out there and run a good example of reusing an asset notrelevant to the little is our quick savings quiz. We basically did a study.It's starting in the year 2017. We did a study on how much remember safe onour six key products, uh, products versus banking with the bank. We madethis simple 10 question quiz, and it basically tells our members, Hey, ifyou move these six products over here, you can save X amount of dollars. Well,now that quiz has become unwritten other reusable asset that makes thehard conversation of why you should move your checking and your audit. Overhere, something very, very simple ways just makes college and sense thatyou're not saving this much more year. And the idea is to continue to createassets like that so that when you come around to these bigger campaigns,you're actually eliminating a good 10 20% of the work. It's not mawr byreusing processes that have been trying to improve on and implementing them insuch a way that it's specific to that campaign because it's not just throwingit out. The inside of the forget it, it's how is it going to work in thisaudience. What's weeks? So I need to make How can I continue to improve uponit? Yeah, it's really a perpetual and organic lead generating asset thatcreates value over an extended period of time. I know you're you're startingto do that with other product lines as well as you. Level up your capabilities.Mortgages. Very complicated buying journeys, uh, the business servicesside of things. So it's exciting to see you've got the foundation, and thenyou're leveling up these capabilities year over year, and the future isbright. You've got such amazing story. And I feel like we're just scratchingthe surface here with, you know, talking through some of the high levelwinds in progress that you've made. I wanna look ahead a little bit into thefuture, taking two years out. So two years down the road and let's lookbackwards. What is one thing for you...

...that has to happen between now and thenfor you to feel good about your continued progress along your digitalgrowth journey? Oh, I think that's simply, uh as I gained new knowledge, Ihave to give it away and educate others. Um, and empower them to be able to dothe same steps along alongside me, and I have to be willing to give somethingup to take on something. Do Digital is a process a a base of a project, thatit is forever changing. And what worked in 2017 were working. 2019 may not workin 2020 and just realistically, we have this internal singing the department.Don't get married to your work and understanding that you have to bewilling to get something out to take something else on. And just I thinkwhat would have toe happen is we're continually looking at our processesand understand. Okay, this is great. What's time to what? What? What can wesunset so we could take on something new and remember in all of that what welet go, what we take on How is it helping people at our core? Because youcan take on a lot of things that might look beneficial in the onset, but itisn't going to contribute to the overarching theme of helping others,and reaching the goals at the same time is a goal so ago. But it's it's justremembering toe let go of what I can't do anymore. I need to let go of andtake all that need to and give away that that now it's not to make room fornew learning, practical practical insight and wisdom right there. Whatmust I stopped doing so that I can take on something new? You know, I get askedall the time. What do I need to be doing next? Like, what Should we evenstart looking at doing? I'm like, Whoa, let's diagnose the situation so that wecan figure out first and foremost what you should stop doing, so that you cancreate the space and time to start creating new behaviors. New, developingnew capabilities. Because if you keep the old and try to add the new, you'readding additional levels of complexity, and that's where people get stuck inthe overwhelming the circle thing. It's just not a really good place ending onpractical insight. Practical...

...application, practical action for thefinancial brand marketing cells, leadership teams listening. Becauseyou've had so much experience over the past four or five years, what is onerecommendation? Practical recommendation, practical action thatyou could encourage them to take so that they can move forward along theirown journey with confidence. I say if you don't know your why you can't doyour what? Remember why you do what you dio. So that way you can continue to dowhat you do in excellence. That's that's the simplest way I can say. Andthat's kind of how I like to do it. If you don't know why can you say that onemore time? I think that was key. If you don't. If you don't know why you dowhat you do, you can't get to do continue to do what you do inexcellence, and you can't elevate from there. Wow, Thank you so much for that.And thank you for the conversation, Jonathan. If anyone is listening andthey have follow up questions or they just want to connect with you what isthe best way for them to, uh, to get in touch with you? You can find me onFacebook. Um, Instagram my email work email address. I'm I'm a millennial, soI'm pretty digitally accessible. If you could find me, I think you can alsofind your LinkedIn as well. If you can find me on a platform. I would love tochat and help. However I can. We thank you for that. We thank you for thewisdom you shared today, Jonathan. It's been great having you join me onanother episode of banking on digital growth until next time. Be well and dogood. Thank you for listening to another episode of Banking on DigitalGrowth with James Robert Ley. Like what you hear? Tell a friend about thepodcast and leave us a review on Apple podcasts, Google Podcast or Spotify andsubscribe while you're there to get even. Mawr Practical and provenInsights, visit www dot digital growth dot com to grab a preview of JamesRoberts bestselling book Banking on...

Digital Growth or order a copy rightnow for you and your team from Amazon. Inside, you'll find a strategicmarketing and sales blueprint framed around 12 key areas of focus thatempower you to confidently generate 10 times more loans and deposits untilnext time, be well and do good.

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