Picture of Ianai Urwicz Written by Ianai Urwicz
on March 16, 2021

Gone are the days marketers could rely only on print ads, billboards, and TV commercials. Today, you can’t step foot into the marketing world without immersing yourself into the realm of digital marketing.

Today, we will zoom in on three practices that boost your financial institution's ROI with digital marketing.

Table of Contents

The case for digital marketing in banks and credit unions

The different metrics to consider when calculating the ROI of digital marketing

How to boost your financial institution’s ROI with digital marketing

1. Leverage personalization in your digital marketing 

2. Deliver omnichannel campaigns

3. Choose the right digital marketing technology stack



Digital marketing is the component of marketing that leverages all things internet and online technology including social media, SEO, email, blogs, SMS, video, and websites. It's  essential for guiding leads down the path to purchase and taking them through the three main stages of the sales funnel…

  1. Awareness: Attracting new leads and educating them that your solution or product exists 
  2. Consideration: Turning your audience and website visitors into potential customers by showing them your solution or product could solve their problems
  3. Decision: Converting these potential customers into buyers 

As a general rule, the more you know your audience and what they want and need, the more targeted your message can be. And the more targeted your message, the greater your chances of converting, and the more your digital marketing ROI will increase. 


The case for digital marketing in banks and credit unions

The accessibility of the Internet and, in particular, the availability of smartphones, is driving the way people buy products and services. Most transactions are now made by customers from home and not in brick-and-mortar locations. 

That includes banks and credit unions. For example, a survey by Deloitte found that almost 20% of all retail banking customers who had not used online services before started using them during the COVID-19 pandemic, and only 6% aren't using them yet.

With more consumers than ever interacting with their banks online across digital channels, it’s essential for financial institutions to have an established digital marketing strategy in order to meet their customer retention and acquisition goals. 

Digital marketing also allows financial institutions to grow by targeting groups that were previously unbanked or underbanked, such as the elderly, the homebound, individuals who don’t share a first language, or lower socio-economic groups.

Basically, digital marketing is a win-win situation for customers, financial institutions, and shareholders alike. 

Sales funnel

The different metrics to consider when calculating the ROI of digital marketing

When it comes to calculating the ROI of your digital marketing efforts, you want to consider how effectively you are moving people through your sales funnel. This includes:

  • The volume of traffic to your website (and other relevant channels)
  • The percentage of conversions that turn visitors into leads
  • The percentage of leads that turn into customers

Metrics to consider for generating traffic (top of funnel)

The following indicate how effectively you're attracting people to your channels:

  • Your site's reputation, calculated based on technical aspects of your implementation, as well as the quantity and quality of backlinks, which indicate how many people are talking about you and who they are
  • How specific blogs and landing pages rank for certain keywords or searches
  • Social media reach: number of followers, views, likes, shares, comments, and saves
  • User engagement measured by the performance of specific calls to action and other links 

Metrics to consider for generating leads (nurturing)

The following indicate how effectively you're engaging traffic generated and turning them into leads:

  • New blog subscribers
  • Email list signups
  • Gated-content performance
  • New social media followers
  • Open and click-through rates of emails
  • Campaign conversions (clicks on your call to action)
  • User engagement through chats, “contact us” requests, etc.

Metrics to consider for generating customers (conversions)

The following indicate how effectively you're turning leads into customers:
  • Number of fully digital conversions (loans, new accounts, credit cards) 
  • Number of partial conversions (started online and completed in-branch or through the call center)
  • Origins of contacts who became customers
  • Number of customers who had at least one interaction with your digital marketing efforts

Three ways to boost your financial institution’s ROI with digital marketing

With the right digital marketing strategy, you can see major returns for your bank or credit union. To guide you on that mission, we’ve compiled three methods to help boost your financial institution’s ROI with digital marketing. 


1. Leverage personalization in your digital marketing 

91% of consumers say they're more likely to shop with brands that recognize, remember, and provide relevant offers and recommendations. 

Just as the key to boosting the ROI of digital marketing is personalization, marketing automation is the way to achieve personalization at scale. Marketing automation allows you to constantly nurture your leads and customers with relevant content on autopilot, so your team doesn’t need to be at the helm at all times.

And personalization is not just adding a first name to your messages. According to Ron Shevlin's Roadmap to Personalization in Banking, personalization is "having pertinent conversations with customers tailored to each channel and the type of relationship they have with the company.” Delivering that requires the ability to use customer behavior and demographics data to create and deliver these personalized conversations. 

While many struggle with not having enough data to personalize, banks and credit unions don't have that problem. They have plenty of first party data. So the challenge is being able to access and use this data to segment their customers, identify trends, predict behavior, and suggest next best products. 

With data on your side, the efficiency of your digital marketing efforts can improve drastically. 


2. Deliver omnichannel campaigns

Omnichannel marketing unifies multiple channels and provides an integrated customer experience. A successful omnichannel marketing campaign leads to a smoother customer journey and, as a result, increased ROI. 

ROI-boosting benefits of omnichannel marketing campaigns: 

  • Increased customer loyalty: Consumers feel seen and heard across all channels, which develops a stronger connection to the brand.
  • Increased brand visibility: By having all of your channels work together, your brand is able to place your message across multiple platforms in a more timely and consistent manner.
  • Highly accurate target marketing: The integration of multiple channels provides you with extensive customer data that helps you better segment and target your campaigns. 
  • Cost effective: You easily get a bird’s-eye view of what channels are the most fruitful so you can adjust spending accordingly.

Tech Stack

3. Choose the right digital marketing technology stack

To do all of this, you need a tech stack which usually involves a marketing automation platform, with different tools integrated with it. 

By using a centralized marketing automation platform, you’re able to truly see the full picture of your marketing sales funnel. So, you want to choose a marketing automation platform that covers all of the channels relevant to your financial institution—one that is able to monitor their performance, leverage your data, and send personalized omnichannel marketing campaigns that boost customer loyalty. 

Your customers are already interacting with you through lots of different channels but, as a marketer, you want to be able to manage them all from a single place. That's where an omnichannel platform like Prisma Campaigns can make all the difference. Because Prisma is built for financial institutions, it starts by integrating with your owned channels, like your online banking and mobile apps, and it's also flexible enough to bring in everything else: email, text, the latest and greatest social media novelty (hello Clubhouse!), and even non-digital channels. 

Additionally, a marketing automation platform that is especially designed for financial institutions has features that address the industry's unique challenges, like data feed automations that make it easier to leverage existing data in the CORE banking or other data sources. 

Marketing automation is an essential factor in scalability, no matter the industry. Marketing automation streamlines your marketing practices, shortens timelines, and creates relevance with customers. 

As a result, marketing automation technology can help your financial institution reduce costs that come from using multiple software providers for each digital channel. Bonus points if your marketing automation solution integrates with other cross-technology solutions like data providers, core banking, and more to further leverage your existing investments.

And for banks and credit unions with limited resources, there's an adapted playbook for you that takes an approach that bets on the assets you already have: channels you own and don't have to pay additionally to use (online banking, mobile app, website), the cross-sell and upsell potential of your existing customers, and their first party data.

Digital Marketing Playbook


In conclusion

Digital marketing is here to stay and will continue to be an essential element of improving your financial institution’s ROI. Today’s consumers expect a lot from brands, including their banks and credit unions, which means they expect them to show up online in meaningful ways. 

By taking the time to develop a thoughtful strategy that prioritizes the consumer experience and leverages technology to increase efficiency, financial institutions can see fantastic results thanks to their digital marketing. 

Our mission at Prisma Campaigns is to empower Financial Institutions like yours to stay relevant in a competitive and challenging environment. That takes an empathetic relationship with your prospects and an omnichannel approach to your marketing campaigns. 

If you'd like to learn more about personalization, omnichannel marketing and marketing automation, here are some additional resources:

Image Credit: Adobe Stock