In light of the SVB failure, Signature Bank collapse, UBS’s government-brokered acquisition of Credit Suisse, and plummeting shares at First Republic, many banking customers have been inundated with phrases like “bank failure” and “financial collapse,” with little added context about the future of their personal finances. This has left many people wondering whether their own financial institutions are stable and if their assets are secure.
Even if your bank has positioned itself well for this moment, it’s important to acknowledge what’s going on in the banking industry and reiterate stability to your customers.
Here are four immediate steps small, mid-sized, and regional banks can take to protect their existing digital customer experience and continue to build trust:
1. Overcommunicate. Outline what your bank is doing to respond to customer concerns and combat contagion in the banking system. Or, if your bank has experienced impacts or is adjusting its risk posture, explain why. Whether you share how much of your outstanding debt is insured, current liquidity ratios, or provide a peer comparison, quantifying the strength of your bank is paramount to maintaining trust. These communications can be sent via email, account pop-ups, or other customer-facing channels.
2. Lean on your CRM. If you’ve invested in a robust CRM system, now is the perfect time to leverage insights to inform your short-term interactions with different customer groups. For example, a customer who had assets with your bank during the 2008 financial crisis will likely have different questions than a customer who started banking with you in 2023. Life phase may also indicate a customer’s current level of concern, as a sixteen-year-old with a checking account is likely to have different priorities than a customer in their sixties on the brink of retirement. Using your CRM platform to inform your approach to upcoming meetings, communications, and product offerings will help you build stronger customer relationships.
3. Ensure that your digital customer experience is operating smoothly. Your customers want reliable access to their account information. If you are planning any technology outages to implement an upgrade or execute routine maintenance, it may be worthwhile to work with your IT team to delay any non-critical changes. If you do move forward with an outage that impacts your customer-facing portals, you risk user panic—and an onslaught of help desk calls—every time the “error: page currently unavailable” message page pops up.
4. Illustrate your bank’s willingness to learn from and adapt to changing circumstances. In the coming months, keep your customers up-to-date on the technology and process improvements you make as an everyday part of your business. Fostering a culture of accountability and innovation takes time, but bringing customers along for that journey is an investment that has the potential to payout over a lifetime of loyalty.
Your customers are your bank’s biggest asset. Learn more about how you can take proactive steps to protect that asset today.