Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Don´t sell bank accounts as if they were Mars bars!

Giving away money seems to be the new trendy marketing method for banks. Suncorp bank just released a campaign offering every new customer 50 bucks:

And in the Us, ING Direct allures teenagers with ipods and cash.

The big banks usually sell by default; getting customers who picks the same bank as their parents or the bank that gives them great service. At least that´s how the big 4 market themselves. Can a few extra dollar make people switch? Is our bank chosen with our brain or our heart?

I believe people can make a slight move to another bank account provider based on the chance of winning an ipod, but will they stay? Research suggests that we do not really trust what is for free; we don´t value what is too easily given to us. Just compare with the dating market where playing hard to get makes you more attractive in the eyes of a lover...

Unless the banks also build a strong brand value, delivering more than dollars, offering an emotional value as well, they will see people coming and going, receiving the incentive, but soon going back to their old bank.

Institutions like banks can´t simply be marketed in the same way as a chocolate bar. Deep seeded fears and feelings need to be considered and thoroughly researched and understood.

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