By Mark Anderson
Want successful campaigns? You’d better have synchronization.
The primary use of an intranet is to centralize the sharing of and access to information for employees and management. However, after deployment, bank leaders often find that the system functions as more than a data repository for employees. Many financial institutions use their intranet to support their IT departments’ management of ticket requests. Others may use it to track and facilitate employee training or calendar management (and for others, it’s all of the above).
But while it’s true that an intranets’ main purpose is to centralize information, these systems can also enhance operations for financial institutions as a whole—and have the potential to uncover and maximize new efficiencies.
Here’s how you can use your intranet to optimize marketing.
A bank’s marketing department—whether large or small—hinges on maintaining consistent communications across the organization. Marketing teams spend valuable time fine tuning campaign details to ensure the best tactics are deployed to target and engage customers. But, outside of the marketing department, there is no guarantee that every employee will follow the prescribed plan once it has been launched.
Consider a program built around specific benefits or rewards designed to drive traffic into the bank’s local branches. Without using an intranet, marketing might need to send hundreds of emails so that each employee understands the campaign’s language and proper procedures. But this wastes server space and runs the risk that some emails will go unread or be misplaced.
What if there are changes to documents, perhaps due to errors—or even a major adjustment to the campaign itself? There is still no guarantee that the employee will use or even see the updated information.
Since an intranet functions as a centralized access point for company-wide information, it also serves as an effective intermediary between marketing specialists and frontline employees. The ability to accurately communicate the marketing team’s program details and messaging is critical to the entire campaign.
Using the intranet, marketing documents can be saved directly to a single, dedicated place, where employees can always refer to them. And if any updates are made, the changes can be reflected in a single, living document, eliminating alternative copies or multiple versions of the same file.
An intranet supports marketing efforts by providing a functional tool to actively manage, update, and distribute marketing materials across an entire branch network.
Suppose a bank decides to rebrand itself.
This is no minor endeavor. After all of the planning and cross-team collaboration, the launch of the new brand must be without incident. Using a centralized intranet, the marketing team can—in real time—delete all versions of the bank’s previous logo and messaging, and replace it with the new content. This provides employees with the most up-to-date versions, without bogging down the email server with constant reminders or messages with attachments of updated files.
It also ensures that employees are only using the latest materials and prevents accidental use of the previous branding or messaging.
Conversely, a bank that uses a shared network—with no permissions to regulate who can save, add, or delete files—runs the risk of using incorrect logos. Obsolete branding could be accidentally distributed to media or partners—or even used in customer-facing materials. Such gaps lead to confused or improper messaging. And that in turn negatively impacts a financial institution’s reputation and efforts to retain customers—two critical influencers of success in a highly competitive banking environment.
What about monitoring?
Advanced analytics allow intranets to track and report which sections of the system are being accessed. They can even reveal the frequency with which employees are using specific files or forms. This provides an extra layer of accountability for employees and executives alike. If the marketing department places campaign or workflow documents in a certain location on the intranet, and they can see whether employees are frequently referring back to them.
They can also find out whether the documents are in a convenient location for employees. This is important because critical marketing workflows ensure that:
- Requests are sent to the correct individual
- Steps are taken in a timely manner
- Materials are the most current and accurate versions available
These insights allow marketing executives to make adjustments on the go, instead of retroactively trying to figure out what went wrong with an initiative or campaign.
Intranets have a wide range of functionality and benefits for financial institutions.
A teller and a member of the marketing team have two entirely different sets of responsibilities, but both must work in sync with each other to maximize the success of a bank’s marketing efforts. By centralizing and improving internal communications, staff becomes more versatile and better positioned to have more meaningful interactions and engagement with customers, creating a healthy environment in which sales and service are optimized and strengthening acquisition for continuous growth.
Mark Anderson is CEO of Johnson City, Tenn.-based Banc Intranets, a leading provider of secure, web-based intranets and directors portals for financial institutions that centralize employee onboarding and training, streamlining day-to-day operations.