In my years of writing about marketing and advertising plans for financial institutions, I get a lot of feedback. One response I get the most often is, “Great ideas, Neal, but where do I start?” Today, I want to help you put these ideas in action and on your calendar. For example, in January, many Americans begin thinking about filing their income taxes before April 15, and they may be considering products like IRA and SEPs, so it’s a great time for banks and credit unions to start promoting these types of products.
Here are some other ideas to help you make 2012 a killer year for your financial clients:
February: As the snow begins to melt, many cities hold their annual “home show.” This is a great time and place to promote mortgages and home equity loans.
March: When the weather starts to warm up, boat shows pop up all over the country. It’s a great time to offer boat loans in all shapes and sizes. The local little league teams will be selling “sponsorship ads” in their programs, so promote the fact that you’re a community bank and there to support them.
April: As we close in on April 15, you can run your IRA ads a few more times to get those last-minute filers. People are also starting to think about vacations, so you could begin promoting your Travel Clubs.
May: Many high schools and colleges will be holding graduations, so promote the fact that wherever these graduates go in the future, you’ll be there to help. Also, since people will be traveling more this month, it’s a great time to promote car loans. Many people are also thinking about remodeling their home, so promoting home equity loans could be profitable.
June: As kids get out of school, many families go on vacation. Credit cards and debit cards are extremely popular this time of year.
July: As the country celebrates the nation’s birthday, it’s a great time to talk about being a community bank or credit union that supports the local community. Plan a Customer Appreciation Day with a barbecue and invite the whole town!
August: As parents begin sending their kids back to school or college, it’s a great time to promote education loans. The local high school will also be selling sponsorship ads in its football programs, so personalize your message for that specific school.
September: Christmas seems to get earlier and earlier each year, and September is a great time to start promoting your Christmas savings plans.
October: Since Roth IRAs have to be done by the end of the year, October is a great time to begin advertising these. You can also start promoting Health Savings Accounts, since many people will be researching them before the end of the year.
November: Car dealers start promoting their end of the year deals – a great time to promote car loans!
December: Take time to say thank you to all of your loyal customers. It’s also a great time to remind everyone that you are a community bank. Their money stays in their community, and any loan decisions are made by people who know them.
Put some thought into your annual marketing plan for your clients. Consider what your clients’ customers are most interested in at during times of the year.
Be specific. Lay out your plan for the year and match it to specific actions.
Attach launch dates to your actions, put them on your marketing calendar and get started. You’ll be surprised what a little planning can do!