Let’s start by getting one thing straight, being a better banker is about awareness. Are you aware of what impacts your customers satisfaction & loyalty? Are you aware of how to be more successful in your role? Are you aware of what makes your business grow & succeed? If you want to be a better banker, being actively conscious of these successes makes you a better banker already. Now, let’s focus on the heart of that awareness, Knowing your customers.
Knowing your customers is critical to being a better banker! Although all customers are important, we want to focus on those that contribute to the successes mentioned above.
Most banks have tons of customer data. Unfortunately, they have a hard time analyzing the data and drawing useful conclusions from it. However, your analytics group should be able to provide you with a report that shows which customers are generating most of your revenue. How does this report help you? Think about the old 80/20 rule. Most likely 20 percent or less of your customers are generating 80 percent of your revenue. These are the customers you should spend your time getting to know because they produce 80 percent of your sales.
So how do you get to know them? Here are some easy strategies for getting to know those customers, growing your relationship with them, and using those relationships to gain new customers.
- Meet with them. The first step is to set up meetings with them. When asking for the meeting, explain that they’re valued customers and you want to learn more about their financial goals so you can help them meet them. When you meet with them, be sure to do the following:
- Pay attention and take notes so you don’t forget important facts during future conversations.
- Be sincere in your interest so your customers know you are genuinely interested in getting to know them.
- Find out what your customer’s financial objectives are. Ask what bank products and services they already have – both at your bank and at competitor banks. Find out how they use them toward meeting their financial goals.
- Find out who is the primary financial decision maker in the household, so you know who to contact for follow up meetings.
- Learn what the customer’s communication channel preferences are. Some might like face-to-face meetings while others might like to communicate with you via email.
- Build long-term relationships. After your first meeting, touch base at least once every 90 days using your customers’ preferred communication channels. You’ll be surprised how quickly doing so builds customer loyalty which is the key to customer retention.
- Reward your good customers. Find a way to reward your best customers. Hold an invitation only reception or financial health workshop for them. Personally call or email them when your bank is offering promotional rates on products that might benefit them. Discuss other options with your management.
- Ask for customer referrals. Once you’ve built a solid relationship with these customers, don’t be afraid to ask for customer referrals. Assure them you’ll treat their friends and family as well as you treat them. There’s a good chance some will have already referred others to you before you even ask.
Ultimately, knowing your customers well will help you to ensure their satisfaction and loyalty and contribute to the growth of your business. It will also help you to be more successful as a banker in determining the best products to recommend and cross-sell to them. Offering them the best financial products and services to meet their financial goals will strengthen your customer relationships and help you grow your business.