An interview with Kevin Tynan, SIEFER REPORT, February 8, 2017, Gina Ragusa

 

Kevin Tynan, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Liberty Bank for Savings, says that combining digital marketing with compelling content is one of the most effective ways to take your institution’s marketing to the next level.

Community banks have a real opportunity to take market share away from large national banks by capitalizing on their community orientation and the consumer’s preference for patronizing local institutions,” says Tynan.

“Smaller banks can build social media and marketing programs that cater to their community by partnering with local non-profits, working with schools, and supporting neighborhood initiatives in ways that are virtually impossible for big national institutions to duplicate.

Tynan says that the bank has developed a digital marketing technique to boost mortgage applications, specifically.

Our approach has evolved over the past six years, when we first launched our digital mortgage marketing program. One of the best things about digital is that its easy to test and to tweak. We monitor key words and phrases monthly to ensure our paid search stays relevant to a changing market. Thats supplemented with digital ads on a variety of channels, which we continually monitor and adjust. By tracking Web conversions and telephone calls, we can tell which ads are most effective and whether content should be added to a Web page.

Tynan reports that digital costs per lead have dropped from $389 two years ago to $150 this year, while mortgage applications have increased by almost 60 percent during the same period. He adds that the banks approach is specialized based on buyer behaviors. We researched that issue one year ago and found that the buyer characteristics of mortgages and refinances are very different,” he says.

“However, buyers gravitate to the same media channels for rate information or research, so we dont have a separate media strategy. The landing page on our Website gives visitors the option of linking to our mortgage or refinance programs.

Tynan notes that not all digital mediums are the best fit. For instance, we learned that digital mortgage ads on Pandora and Facebook didn’t work for us, even when we target our specific market.

To bolster pay-per-click rates, the bank applies methodology and analysis to identify the right leads, he says. Every quarter, we evaluate the media sources that generate leads and applications?not just for quantity produced, but also for cost-efficiency. The number of leads are almost equally divided between digital and traditional.

Our paid digital efforts have been successful, but they are relatively expensive when compared to traditional channels, such as organic search and customer referrals, where costs are typically $14. To attract more organic visitors, we’ve developed Web content that’s designed for prospective homebuyers.”

“This includes creating videos, infographics, and articles that would pop up for those searching for homebuyer information. One video features a lending officer giving tips for submitting an application.

The bank has also launched a drip e-mail campaign to keep Liberty Bank top of mind among those who have asked for mortgage information, or who have prequalified for a mortgage but haven’t taken the next step, says Tynan.

Regularly scheduled e-mails that use Web content or other material give them timely information and remind prospects we are ready to help. This program is reducing the cost of mortgage leads.

As an enthusiastic proponent of digital marketing, Tynan says that many community banks are missing out by not taking advantage of this strategy. “From what I observe in the retail market, community banks are slow to incorporate digital tools. There seems to be more emphasis on social media than digital marketing. The problem is likely that banks dont commit enough resources to marketing.

The average bank has a ratio of one marketing person to around $400 million in assets. That’s not enough to develop a proficiency in digital marketing, so their skills are limited and they must be rely on outside agencies.

Unfortunately, the marketing directors often dont have the skills to lead a digital program. Instead, they rely on vendors, which leads to mixed results and generic programs.

 

 

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