ABA-Why More Banks of All Sizes Are Hiring Marketing Agencies.

ENPNewswire-September 29, 2021--ABA-Why More Banks of All Sizes Are Hiring Marketing Agencies

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Release date- 28092021 - Banks have long aimed to reach outside themselves to engage prospective customers.

With the advent of online and mobile banking, banks big and small are increasingly relying on consulting and marketing firms to support their efforts.

Two years ago, Cynthia Ramsey, brand manager for Progressive Ozark Bank, was tasked with finding an agency that could support the bank's ideas about digital advertising.

'We are a small bank in an extremely rural market,' says Ramsey, whose bank is based in Houston, Missouri. 'We were trying at best to find information on agencies in any capacity, but finding ones that had experience working with community banks and reaching rural markets was its own challenge.'

After interviewing three agencies in the St. Louis area, Ramsey and her team settled on 'a small boutique type firm.' Although, in the vetting process, her bank encountered one marketing agency that 'refused to give us pricing when they learned how small we were ... and one [that]was priced so far outside of budget we didn't go further,' she says.

The marketing firm that Progressive Ozark Bank chose had worked with at least two community banks previously on re-branding. 'It was a 'toe in the water' type approach, but they were diligent to understand our market and target demographics and goals,' Ramsey says. 'They made the extra effort to provide us with content that exemplified and spoke to our market and truly set us off on a fast track.'

Similarly, Cathy Planchart, vice president and product and segment marketing manager for Bar Harbor Bank and Trust, Ellsworth, Maine, says her bank was not using a marketing agency when she joined the bank in 2007. But in 2012, the then $1.3 billion-asset bank was set on a growth trajectory. 'We needed to enter the social media world,' says Planchart. 'Our goal for partnering with a marketing agency was to develop creative ideas and a comprehensive media plan faster than we could do it ourselves.'

Andrea Pagiazitis, senior vice president for retail banking at First Constitution Bank, Jamesburg, New Jersey, points out that her bank does not even have its own marketing department. But in the wake of the COVID pandemic, as bank customers are making more use of online, social media and email connections and digital campaigns have become more important...

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