Published on April 17, 2023
Written by LeAnn Case
Sorry, folks. There isn’t one perfect answer because there are a lot of variables at play: your market, your strategy, your budget, to name a few. So, let’s look at marketing in a different way. I’m going to highlight three areas to help you see that you already have the answer to those questions. (Spoiler Alert…It’s YOU.)
Start with your WHY.
Why is doing what you do important? Why is it important to you? Why is serving in the way you do important to your community and to your organization?
It’s important to start with the why because we often jump into a project or a loan, deposit, or member/customer growth goal, and want to get straight to the action steps. So often we jump into a task or decision without giving thought as to why that task or that decision matters. Blasting past the why keeps us in a transactional mindset. However, when we start with the why, it gives us a stronger foundation to build upon. It helps us see past the transaction. It opens a positive state for us to be creative, which is important for goal-reaching and relationship-building. It helps us connect.
Your second step is to think about the value.
What value does my product or service bring? The best marketing plan won’t work if you aren’t communicating your product’s or service’s value. (This is where you might be thinking, “No duh, LeAnn.” …Stick with me.)
Rather than listing your product or service differentiators, let’s talk about your strengths. I’m not talking about the SWOT method (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats). I’m talking about something you do that you’re really good at doing. People are looking for connection and they will choose your product or service based on their connection to you.
So, what is something you do, a strength, that shows your personal why in action?
When we are playing in our strengths, people see our enthusiasm. People want to be connected with someone who cares about what they are doing, and they’re doing it in a way that proves it. And best of all, it allows you to find joy in your work as you conquer each and every day.
Let’s pause before getting to the third area of how to answer the question of how to best drive business. I recently shared this different way of looking at marketing at the Oklahoma MBA and CUREN gathering. Some of the ways they wanted to activate their why and to put their strengths into action were by:
The third step is to focus on data.
Yep, using data to understand your members and customers and their propensity to borrow is part of your job, too. (Meaning, it’s not just for the marketing department.) You can use data to help you focus on serving in the way that is uniquely you.
Once steps one and two are dialed in, use your YOU-ness to communicate with the specific groups below (pro tip: make personal phone calls with the objectives of educating and serving as a resource). Note, these criteria were based on previous experience unique to a specific financial institution. Your factors might differ, so check your data for what matches your organization’s average results.
In addition to your organization’s data, you can use data from resources like the National Association of Realtors to best understand your mortgage target market. Knowing how borrowers (and potential borrowers) behave, where and how they shop, and their interests will strongly support your communication efforts.
Here’s the bottom line: Your energy brings energy. The best marketing strategy is in you. Connect to your why and to your strengths. Put those into action using data. Pulling those three areas together will keep you excited, hungry, and creative. The power of your passion will drive business in your door and will manifest into great relationships.