February 5, 2018 How Mergers Lead To Acquisitions

There is nothing that stresses people out more than money. Managing money in the 21st century is about convenience and experience instead of perks and short-term benefits. Million-dollar brands like Venmo, Robinhood, and CASH have all focused on making it easier to follow and manage our money while Apple Pay and Samsung Pay make it simpler to pay everyday items like groceries and retail. The appeal for these ideas comes down to the experience, and when banks merge, they fall. And the numbers back it up. Deloitte Center for Banking Solutions found nearly 64% of banking survey respondents who had switched an account to another bank did so within the first month after an M&A deal had been announced.

I’d like to repeat that again.  

Deloitte Center for Banking Solutions found nearly 64% of banking survey respondents who had switched an account to another bank did so within the first month after an M&A deal had been announced.

Imagine losing 64% of your base in one month! Imagine losing your base because you teamed up with another brand. That is what is happening in the banking world right now and it isn’t getting easier. Marketers and customer service teams that work with newly formed companies have found a major problem in properly communicating with customers on the new changes. These massive exiles aren’t just from one experience either. J.D. Power and Associates says fewer than 50% of customers at banks that are being acquired report that they received a sufficient amount of information from their financial institution about the merger. Thankfully there are some opportunities that we’ve found to help with the transition. Here are four tips to retaining and acquiring new customers.

 

1. Like any strong relationship, the key is communication. By immediately notifying and clearly conveying that a merger has occurred, you can confirm with your customer how the organization has changed. Highlight important aspects of how the customer will benefit (more ATMs, access to new investment strategies, lower fees) and take this opportunity as a new selling point for potential or cold clients.

 

2. Know the next question. Never lose a customer because the answer wasn’t readily available. Prior to any merger, put out a defined list of FAQs to all team members to prepare for upcoming questions. This will give your individual banks empowerment in knowing that they are secured and taken care of while your customers will feel that the transition went smoothly. Also provide one pagers or whitepapers about the key changes in the process for current customers that is easy to understand. Hire a copywriter to make it simple and invite them for a bank visit.

 

3. Rebrand the acquired organization. The merging organization had a reputation, core values, customer base, and strategy that may not fit yours. Re-defining the brand as part of your organization provides a clear direction the institution is going and can change potential customer’s opinion or provide positive reinforcement by turning an organization around.

 

4. Spend on marketing first. After you’ve set-up your new brand, it’s time to put it out into the world. Updating your website is only the beginning. From digital assets like social media and email signatures to the everyday items like business cards, stationery, and brochures you must have everything ready for launch. There is nothing worse than confusing a prospective customer by having two floating brands; one without an identity, and the other having an identity of hostile takeover.

Following these tips and contact us for more about how we can help navigate your brand’s needs and how to best market to your clients!