When not to sell to your customers

Sometimes the answer isn't on the menu

I mean... the shirt isn't totally wrong

Community financial institutions are often the first stop for money related problems. Usually, those problems extend beyond the point solution you have on offer. So what else should you be doing outside of conducting the transaction?

“But we can go around offering advice or recommendation outside our offerings!”

That’s true in some circumstances.

But, if you have nothing to say, you’re telling your customers you are not a trusted advisor for them. You are only a vendor.

I don’t know anyone in community banking who sees themselves that way. Trust, and the role of providing that level of care, are what makes them unique.

Differentiating on service is about being there when you’re needed. That might be with a patient ear. Or it could be providing the first steps to getting help elsewhere, i.e., how to hire an estate attorney.

Personalized service is not only knowing your customers, the demographics (who), and psychographics (why). It’s also understanding what problem they’re facing. What brings them to you.

Customer journeys are often well studied and documented for the first transaction. But what about the myriad of things that could happen to your existing customers? Do you have a playbook of life events designed into your banking experience? Your frontline training? Your digital experience?

Here is a short list to spur your thoughts:

  • First job
  • New job
  • Job loss
  • Move
  • New home/first home
  • Disability
  • Vacation
  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • New Child (first child/adoption/international adoption/foster care)
  • New car
  • New driver
  • Savings for college
  • Going to college
  • Care of special needs family member
  • Family member in prison
  • Bankruptcy
  • Care of elderly parent
  • Estate planning

What other events should a trusted financial service provider be ready to help with?

Share the post:

Get our blog posts delivered to your inbox: