Aligning Marketing & Technology

“The year is 2015. Don dials up his credit union from his interpersonal telecomputer, which he carries everywhere.  It’s his telephone and window to the world, containing all his family’s personal data. As the screen comes up, Don chooses a live interface mode instead of direct account access because he needs information about a new investment the credit union offers…”

Recently, when doing some research, I came across an article I had written in 1995 for CUNA’s Credit Union Executive magazine.  The title was, “Credit Unions – The Next Generation, What the Future Holds.”  Fascinated, I wanted to see how many predictions, from almost 20 years ago, had come true!

The article on the future of credit unions is a hoot to step back in time almost 20 years to remind yourself of the beginning stages of online banking, customer self service, and more. 

 Marketing remains the same in principle, to engage and inspire people to be ready to buy a product or service. It’s the key component to building revenue.

 Yet, the marketing of tomorrow is about adding in the component of offering assistance to consumers in making those decisions on what to buy using technology. Here are some fundamentals to use for aligning technology and marketing:

  1. If my target is using a smartphone, I need to have a marketing message on an app they download.
  2. If my target is using a tablet, I need to have the formatting right for viewing a message.
  3. If my target is using a computer, I need to be in their email inbox.
  4. If my target is using a search engine to find something, I want my message to pop up with helpful tips and tools to keep them on my website longer.
  5. If my target is using a drive-up window, I want a message in front of him/her.
  6. If my target is walking into a branch, I want a valuable message to greet them.
  7. If my target is driving around town, I want a message to appear on a billboard.
  8. If my target is watching TV, I want a commercial to engage him/her.
  9. If my target is reading a newspaper, I want to have an article about my products and services to read.
  10. If my target is listening to radio, I want to sponsor something special, like Christmas music to create an emotional connection.
  11. If my target is on Facebook, I want to have a community FB page that shows a commitment by employees and the organization not products and services. Look at the success of American Express Small Business Saturday. It mixes all media to provide a sense of community.

 While you might not be able to afford all the above engagemen pieces, you still need a balanced marketing plan that incorporates as many touchpoints as possible…and stick to the plan.  One of the worst things you can do in this economy and techno age is to shoot from the hip.  If you aren’t prepared, your marketing is like playing catch-up and someone with a consistent marketing effort grabs the consumer’s attention and business.

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