Banking today is a complex service with myriad product and service offerings. The digitization of the economy has meant that in-person interactions are minimal today; the personal client-bank relationship of yesteryears has undergone a sea change. Most of the transactions are being performed online and the connect is lost. The competition between banks is greater too. It’s important for banks to build a strong relationship with customers and attract new ones and this is why PR in the banking sector is important. It also helps in the growth of the bank’s brand and strengthening it.
PR for banks is so important that not having it can even be dangerous! This works hard to keep the brand well ingrained in the customer’s mind and also maintain a favourable image consistently. For instance, not commenting on a major new financial amendment can be perceived as the brand being too inactive. If there’s s drop in your bank’s stock, lack of communication could result in stocks plummeting lower, it’s these kind of areas where PR can really make a qualitative difference.
A strong PR strategy helps your brand stay updated and ahead of your peers.
A signature for your bank
PR can help your bank distinguish itself from the rest. It can help your brand showcase its unique offerings and services in a way that will build strong recall. With a set of targeted communication, this can give you an advantage over the competition. Crafting a signature for your bank that will keep you on top.
Banks need to keep a continuous outflow of information going, this can be related to new offerings, warnings of any new ingenious ways of criminals to siphon customer funds through unscrupulous links for instance and also share views on new financial rules and so on.
The Trust quotient
In the banking sector, trust is the most important factor that determines why someone will choose a particular bank. Building that trust is not a single-time effort where one can release an ad campaign and hope that trust will be built. Just imagine, would you put your money in a place that you have not heard much of? No, you wouldn’t. Trust can be built through PR, step by step through news stories that stress a particular bank’s trustworthiness by documenting its successes, using influencers, releasing articles on its achievements and services, providing media coverage for the top brass of the bank and so on.
The banking sector is vulnerable to scams and other financial issues that could make bad press and completely damage the image of a bank. A good PR company can usually foresee any upcoming crisis and get proactive. Even in the case a crisis breaks out, a PR agency can smoothly and seamlessly handle the situation and salvage the image of the bank. It can also soothe the chaos that can ensue after the media gets wind of any issue.
Mergers & Takeovers
Mergers and takeovers happen to banks at times and this can result in a sea change in everything from operations to functioning and publicity. PR can help to disseminate information about the change and put its customers at ease. It also works as an effective tool to help publicise the facts and prevent misunderstandings.
Build a strong social media presence
Today, everyone gets most of their information from social media and you just can’t afford to get left out of this. The greatest advantage is that it brings about direct communication between your brand and your customers. This platform makes them feel valued and opens up a channel of two-way communication where they can address their concerns. This helps to build a strong connect and develops trust.
Building thought leadership
Don’t let your brand just be one more bank brand pushing its services. Aim to become a brand that’s positioned as a Thought Leader, an innovative bank that leads the way. Sharing financial tips that benefit customers, taking part in media interviews on TV channels and in print can go a long way in establishing leadership. Make sure the content offered is new, even if it’s about an existing offering, bring a fresh perspective that the audience can relate to.
The Catalyst advantage
At Catalyst, we have a great deal of experience in working for the banking and financial sector and can chalk out a sound PR strategy for bank brands. Our experts base every strategy on a sound foundation of intense research and craft one that will work on all counts creating awareness, building trust, improving brand image, building strong customer relationships and handling things the right way during a crisis.