It’s the great debate: Has the use of Digital Marketing such as email, texting, and social media changed the customer experience for the worse or for the better?
For the most part, we are in “Camp Better”.
Prior to the wide scale use of the internet for buying and digital marketing for connecting and nurturing, the only way to connect with clients was an in-person meeting, phone call or fax. That interaction, albeit very personal, was often infrequent – there are only so many hours in the day. As with most companies, when it comes to face to face client interaction, the Pareto Principal is the standard: 20% of your clients bring in 80% of your revenue and therefor get the most attention. That hasn’t changed, what has changed is HOW they get the attention.
Google, Amazon, and Facebook have completely transformed the B2B world. These platforms have trained buyers to get what they want, when they want it. Buyers have also come to assume and expect that their vendors should anticipate what they need. The classic example is Amazon’s sales tactic of “Buyers of this product (the one you are looking at or buying) also bought_______. How often have you bought those extras?
As for the CX (Customer Experience), Digital Marketing has been a game changer. Vendors and Buyers can now get answers to questions immediately either via chat bots, FAQ’s on websites, or tutorials on YouTube. This woman built a house ONLY using YouTube Tutorials! They no longer have to wait for an office to open at 9am to speak to a “human”.
In banking, things most people now take for granted such as ATM’s, remote deposits, online bill pay – or even online banking – were unheard of 20+ years ago and now are the norm. Our clients have access to their money, their loan information, and can easily transfer funds online. Do we miss seeing our customers in our branches on a regular basis? Yes, but we know we’ve enhanced and improved our relationship with them because we’ve made their lives infinitely easier. Time is money – we save them time.
Digital Marketing allows us and other businesses to constantly stay connected with our customers. We can email them, post messages on social media, have resources on our website and yes, some of our customers indeed text us if they need to “talk” to us immediately.
It’s the new norm. What will it be like 25 years from now? I’m not sure – maybe Star Trek isn’t too far in the future!
At Litchfield Bancorp – we embrace the new norm, and the old. Some of our clients prefer to use a paper check register and checks – while others don’t even know what to do with that little book! Some don’t own ATM cards, while others would be lost without them. And yes, some don’t have email addresses or even own a computer – and since you are reading this, we can assume you aren’t in that group. Either way – it’s all about delivering the best experience to customers – isn’t it?
Stephen Yonych Jr.
Assistant Vice President, Watertown Manager