Several studies and reports have shown, time and again, that email continues to be the most effective channel of marketing communication with the highest ROI of almost $40* for every $1 spent. As much as 87** percent of all marketers choose email as the best medium to distribute their marketing content.
Technology continues to propel email ahead of all other communication channels. The advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) in email automation has transformed the way customers receive, open, and engage with emails. Email has evolved to become a platform that disseminates the most relevant, most meaningful content by deploying such technological interventions.
The banking industry can reap several benefits from email marketing such as:
- Onboarding new customers in the most effective and friendly manner
- Handling customers’ data better for personalizing their experiences
- Improving customer engagement with relevant and value-added content
- Making it easier for customers to receive financial information on the go
- Integrating with CRM to create and track meaningful interactions
- Offering a safe and secure communication channel for sensitive interactions
Several banks are already deploying email technologies that are purpose-built for scaling quickly and smartly; the email marketing platforms have shown significant revenue impact through customer retention, conversion, activity, and sales.
In this email marketing guide for banks, we deconstruct four types that global banking institutions are deploying to deliver targeted, relevant, engaging, and personalized marketing communications to their customers.
Welcoming and onboarding your customer
We can never overemphasize the importance of a good welcome email that the customers should receive from you. The open rate of welcome emails is 86% more than other standard subscriber emails; they set the tone of brand engagement that the customers would expect in the long run. As the first impression, a welcome email paves the way for a great customer journey throughout which you can keep connecting and interacting.
A welcome email sequence is specifically designed to familiarize your customers with your brand, products, and services. Usually, 2-3 emails are the norm for such a sequence: it could be asking for customers’ preferred frequency/timing for receiving the emails, sharing the contact details of the relationship manager assigned to the customer, a special welcome treat in the form of gift vouchers or discount offers at partner merchants, and much more.
Let’s look at a few examples below:
Creating a deeper connection
Do keep in mind that the mails, which personally engage with the customers, rank right next to the welcome emails in importance. With the extent of intelligent automation now available on email platforms, you can easily send your personalized wishes for every single occasion that matters to your customer – birthdays, anniversaries, festivals, religious events, national holidays, acquiring a new house, or car, and much more.
You could also cross-reference the customer database and offer relevant and tailored content – a customer that has availed of Forex would find it useful to receive international travel updates, revised guidelines, weather tips, and more. Similarly, a customer that has acquired a new house, would be interested in curated suggestions for interior décor, housewarming ideas, neighborhood community services, etc.
Giving a voice to the customers’ opinion by way of a periodic survey or feedback would also make for a good engagement. Send survey and feedback emails independent of any transaction for a holistic response about your brand’s overall perception, or you could also choose to ask for product/service-specific experiences and suggestions.
Share things that add value
Your announcer emails need to be lively, engaging, and short. They should be concise communications about your products and services that add value. Keep in mind that only truly new things should merit an announcer email; for the rest, there are the promotional emails. The first few announcer emails can also request your customers to add your email address to the address list so that all future emails would have the perfect deliverability to the primary inbox.
Some typical announcers would include the launch of new products and services, upgrades/design enhancements in your site or app, fresh investment opportunities in stocks/funds, and such. Important information on digital payment updates, safety alerts and practices, and banking regulation news would also feature in this category.
Offer to make the customers’ life easier
In today’s time-strapped world that requires people to always be on the go; nothing is as valued as relevant, easily digestible, and actionable information relating to one’s own finances. With the depth and spread of customer data at your disposal, there are quite a few customers needs you can address in your email communication.
Regular service emails would comprise accounting updates, monthly/quarterly statements, auto-renewal payment alerts, and the like. You can widen the scope to include credit score checks, risk assessments for investing, and buy/sell advice for stocks. Your curation could also extend to financial planning, comparisons of properties/vehicles, and revisions in tax filing procedures.
Pave the way for new experiences
The endgame of your promotional emails would be to improve brand affinity, create additional revenue, and enhance customer retention. The inboxing success of your promotional mail depends a lot on personalizing the subject line, providing content that stays true to the topic, and making the content relevant to the recipient. Keep the profile of the recipients and their preferences foremost in mind while creating promotional emails. Every promotional communication should be of tangible use to create interest and encourage engagement.
Keep the audience segment as narrowly defined and specific as possible. As for the promotional types, there are plenty to choose from: people-based events like Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Raksha Bandhan, Festive Season Offers, Credit Card Rewards, Cash Back on payments – the list is limited only by what you have to offer.
Two new technologies impacting the emails
AMP and BIMI
Two of the newer technologies, AMP and BIMI have opened up several interesting possibilities in emails. AMP can display highly interesting components like live-updating content, dynamic layout for large content, personalized images, timers that count down, fill out a poll/survey within the email, and act as a mini website within the mail.
The banking industry is yet to catch up on sending AMP emails; this would be a good time for you to take the lead and stand out among the competition.
Gmail, the world’s largest mailbox provider, has recently allowed BIMI standard to its 2bn mailboxes. BIMI can display your official bank logo within the inbox; it assures the customer that your bank genuinely sent the mail. BIMI also ensures email authentication, which reduces the potential for your bank to be spoofed or maliciously used in fraud.
Here are some examples from other verticals that have effectively used AMP emails to improve their customer experience and satisfaction. Any of these could be adapted to serve the banking communication needs equally well.
Summing it up
No other communication channel offers a win-win scenario as email does. For the banks, it’s a low-cost option that enables targeted messaging; for the customers, it’s the preferred medium of communication that they trust the most, as compared to all other channels. An email program with the right strategy, planning, delivery, tracking, analytics, and insights can put you way ahead of the throngs in the highly competitive banking world.
Our global team of email technology experts will be happy to help you with assessing, evaluating, and recommending the best email practices followed in the banking industry worldwide. Do reach out to us by sending a mail.
*source of info: dma.org
**source of info: contentmarketinginstitute.com