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February 25, 2015

Big Data, Little Data, Any Data: Strategic Marketing Using Your Credit Union’s Existing Data

Filed under: Credit Union Tech,Credit Unions,Data,Webinar,Webinars — 11:02 am

Wednesday, March 18
1:00-2:00 p.m. Central Time

Presenter: Jesse Boyer, President & CEO, DigitalMailer, Inc.

  • How is your credit union communicating to your members in an increasingly “noisy” landscape?
  • What is your strategy to truly engage your members via relevant, timely and personalized communication?
  • Are you effectively maximizing your digital banking and omni-channel touch points?
  • What are you doing to attract younger millennials and GenY members?

Your credit union is rife with data—Core, CRMs, LOS, MCIFs, data warehouses, etc., etc.—so why not put that data to work to help jump start your growth initiatives?

In this executive session, learn important communication and marketing trends which are impacting the credit union industry. You will leave this webinar with an increased understanding of key trends, activities and solutions to help refine your digital communications strategy.

Attendee Takeaways

Join us and walk away with the framework necessary to implement the right tools to build a comprehensive digital communication plan. Learn:

  • The top trends shifting consumer communications expectations
  • Ways to leverage your credit union’s existing data to more effectively reach your members
  • Examples of how other credit unions are already taking advantage of the communication opportunities provided by their digital banking and omni-channel delivery systems

About the Presenter:

Jesse Boyer
President & CEO
DigitalMailer, Inc.

A 20-year veteran of the credit union industry, Boyer has held several executive-level positions, including COO, CIO and CSO, during his career. With proficiency in strategic planning, operational execution, information technology management and new product development, Boyer has extensive experience leading productive change and innovation across all lines of business. Boyer was instrumental in launching and leading the world’s first completely online, full-service, nationwide credit union, and was subsequently named as one of CUES’ “Rising 100” top executives in the country. Boyer has been the subject of a case study by Dell Computers, has served on several notable technology advisory groups, and has been a featured speaker at numerous conferences and events. Boyer holds a Bachelor of Science from George Mason University and an MBA from Johns Hopkins University.

Register Now


February 13, 2015

Are your members LOVING your online forms?

Filed under: security — Tags: — 9:25 am

Do your members love completing all transactions with you or is filling out a simple form from your website more like a terrible blind date‹painful and disappointing? With DigitalMailer's Secure Forms solution, you can do away with the archaic process of printing, then faxing or mailing a form just so a member can change their address or fill out an ACH form. Our newest solution allows the secure transfer of information to be painless and simple by utilizing the convenience of technology. Shouldn't all relationships, especially with your financial institution, be that easy?

Our Secure Forms solution allows you to easily create forms with the system's intuitive design tool, and instantly place them online or behind online banking for easier authentication and increased security. And, yes, we have built reporting and workflow capabilities that make the service work well in a regulated enterprise. So you can take all of the forms currently on your website, that you make your members download and snail-mail or fax, and provide an easy, modern alternative!

To learn more about our Secure Forms solution, check out the white paper here.

Because we love our relationship with you, we would love the opportunity to show you how this solution can help your institution be more efficient! You may even love the special pricing that you'll receive for acting soon! So register for our Secure Forms webinar by clicking here or reach out to me today to set up a private demonstration!

Here's to a lovely Valentines Day weekend,
Sam


January 26, 2015

This Just In: The Filene Research Institute Issues Results of Leeflet™ Survey

Filed under: Banks,Credit Union News,Credit Union Tech,Credit Unions,DigitalMailer,e-mail,email marketing,eStrategy,Financial News,Leeflet,Marketing,marketing on a budget,technology — 2:33 pm

Eighty-five percent!

That’s the average savings a pilot group of credit unions have seen by eliminating print brochures and switching to Leeflet – a digital service that sends requested information directly to members’ email inbox. In dollar terms, that 85 percent means an average of $13,766 leftover in the marketing budget. And for credit unions relying heavily on the print promotions, the savings is higher – as much as $40,000 … not including costs for mailing!

 

DigitalMailer + Filene = Leeflet

In 2013, an i3 innovation team from The Filene Research Institute approached DigitalMailer to collaborate in creating a program that would reduce marketing costs, while giving financial institutions the opportunity to track customers’ reactions. The result was Leeflet.

For DigitalMailer, helping develop Leeflet with the i3 team was a natural product extension, combining its technology expertise and online communication tools to help credit unions deepen member relationships. Given that most financial institution marketing materials include terms, rates and conditions, traditional print brochures and flyers are often obsolete well before the supply runs out, which can quickly deplete the marketing budget. In contrast, Leeflet enables credit unions to easily update brochures electronically, saving the cost of printing and mailing.

The Filene Research Institute has now concluded a six-month pilot program of Leeflet. Along with the Filene i3 team, three credit unions were involved in program development: Financial Center Federal Credit Union in Indianapolis, Ind.; Fort Knox Federal Credit Union in Radcliff, Ken.; and Smart Financial Credit Union in Houston, Texas. Altogether, 19 credit unions– with assets ranging from $40 million to $10 billion—participated in a survey or other aspects of the program.

During the pilot program, participating credit unions were given access to DigitalMailer’s Leeflet web platform, which tracks members who open their Leeflet emails and use the provided information to take next steps. Filene surveyed the credit unions both before and after implementation to answer these questions:

1. What are members preferred delivery channels for receiving information from their credit unions?

2. What would the savings be for eliminating print brochures and flyers in favor of using the Leeflet service?

3. How does digital communication affect the sales of credit union products and services?

 

Survey Says

Among its findings, Filene determined that while cost savings for credit unions can be significant, Leeflet’s advantages extend to other areas. The report noted that, “Through Leeflet, many credit unions may reduce cost, and most will find benefits in the ongoing transition in marketing from paper formats to more interactive, and trackable, forms of communication.”

Specifically, Filene found the following:

  • Leeflet marketing generates attention. Open rates for member-requested Leeflet promotions averaged 53 percent – twice as high as most unprompted email marketing campaigns. Click-through rates averaged 28 percent – five times higher.
  • Leeflet lessens dependence on print brochures. Among a panel of four credit unions that implemented Leeflet, the average number of brochures printed/person decreased from 0.57 to 0.07 per member, per year – a reduction of 88 percent. While some participants discontinued all paper brochures right away, others gradually cut the use of them. Altogether, they decreased printed brochures an average of 83.3 percent, with reductions ranging from half the number previously printed to no printing at all.
  • Leeflet cuts printing costs. Printing costs for credit unions on the panel varied based on overall volume, volume discounts, and other factors. The savings on printing ranged from a modest 4.1 percent to a whopping 85.0 percent. On average, the four credit unions collectively saved a total of 65 percent (reduction of printing and addition of Leeflet costs). In real dollars, this averaged $13,766.
  • The more reliance on print, the greater the savings without it. As might be expected, credit unions that had heavily used print brochures benefited the most by implementing Leeflet. For example, 1st United Services Credit Union in Pleasanton, Calif., saved $40,800 (85 percent) by switching exclusively to Leeflet. And Edge Federal Credit Union in Liverpool, N.Y., dramatically cut the number of brochures printed – from 16,000 to 1,400. By moving most promotions to the Leeflet platform, Edge FCU saved a total of $11,438 (71.8 percent).

 

Make It Count

Filene concluded that they observed those using Leeflet appropriately can build and grow their sales and service culture; provide business intelligence about brochures, both by delivery channel and individual employee; and create opportunities for coaching, accountability and follow up – leading to stronger member engagement and improved share of wallet.

To make the most of Leeflet or any electronic marketing strategy, keep these tips in mind:

  • Use Leeflet for targeted promotions. Responding to members’ actual requests ensures much higher open and click-through rates than unprompted emails. (See figures cited.)
  • Meet members in their communication channel of choice. Eighty-one percent of members surveyed prefer emails for financial product or service promotions. Only the credit union’s website ranks higher at 92 percent. United States mail drops to 51 percent, and other message channels fall below that.
  • Choose the right products and services to promote. Filene found that the highest Leeflet open and click-through rates were for unsecured loans, mortgage loans and checking accounts. The lowest open and click-through rates were for loan rate sheets, credit cards and online banking.
  • Gain buy-in from key employees to ensure success. While the marketing team typically manages the program, other employees also play a role. Engage frontline leadership and staff, and provide adequate training, as this is the group likely to drive the Leeflet program and influence member interactions.

 

Jesse Boyer, President
DigitalMailer, Inc.

Jesse Boyer is President of DigitalMailer, a digital communications and electronic marketing firm providing credit unions the power to reach their members across multiple digital channels. To learn more about Leeflet, contact him at jboyer@digitalmailer.com.  www.digitalmailer.com

Filene Research Institute is an independent, consumer finance think and do tank. We are dedicated to scientific and thoughtful analysis about issues affecting the future of credit unions, retail banking, and cooperative finance. www.filene.org


 


January 23, 2015

5 Marketing Trends for 2015

Filed under: Blogging,Marketing,marketing on a budget — 3:21 pm

Are you prepared for the marketing trends of 2015? The Credit Union Times reported five marketing trends for 2015 last week and as a DigitalMailer client we wanted to let you know how you can utilize our tools to make sure your financial institution is a trend-setter.

 

The article, which can be seen here, noted the five trends we will see this year are:

  1. Digital Advertising Dominates
  2. Making Digital Investments
  3. Predicting What Members Want
  4. Making it Real with Video Marketing
  5. The Latino Market Is Calling

 

We’ll break down the facts, the predictions and how you can prepare as a client of DigitalMailer.

 

1. Digital Advertising Dominates

 

According to the article, credit union marketing professionals expect to see credit unions shift more dollars from traditional advertising to digital advertising.

 

A Gartner survey showed that digital advertising spending averaged about 25 percent of a company’s marketing budget last year, but around half of those companies plan to increase their digital marketing budget by 17% on average in 2015.

With the increase in millennial consumers, experts recommended an increase in the channels they use the most; digital. One way DigitalMailer is helping credit unions move from traditional advertising, to a more technologically advanced method, is with Leeflet, our electronic brochure solution.

Not only will you send your collateral through an email, but you will also send a one-to-one message, intended for it’s recipient because it was requested. All the while, you will now have the ability to track how your members are reacting to the collateral you send. Check out more about Leeflet by going here.

2. Making Digital Investments

 

A large change in 2015 will be how credit unions use their websites to help achieve their marketing goals, mainly because members are more likely to spend time on a website than a branch.

Experts expect credit unions to evolve their sites from glorified online brochures into a sales tool that can capture what members and non-members are looking into on the website. Credit unions could then use that information to pitch content that consumers need to help them make purchasing decisions.

“One of the most effective ways to deliver that content is email despite annual predictions of the death of email,” the article stated.

According to a McKinsey & Co. study, “91 percent of U.S. consumers still use email daily. The rate at which emails prompt purchases is not only estimated to be at least three times that of social media, but the average order value is also 17% higher.”

Additionally, nearly 45% of all marketing emails are opened on a mobile device.

DigitalMailer’s email platform, ARB+, is the perfect tool to help you send promotions through email. They can be optimized so members will be able to read the same message on their desktop, iPad or mobile device. With ARB+, you can also set up onboarding series that react to your members’ actions.

Predicting What Members Want

 

Using the information you already have about your members is a great way to target individuals for promotions. Although the article goes a bit further than the basic demographic data and information you already have about the solutions members are currently using, this is a great place to start!

With AdEngine, a DigitalMailer solution that pulls data from your core or CRM, you can present a “real time” one-to-one revenue-generating offer to your consumers. AdEngine helps you communicate and cross-sell to consumers, by placing ads that are more relevant to the consumer viewing the advertisement. It’s a simple way to advertise more intelligently to your members. Learn more about AdEngine here.

Making It Real With Video Marketing

 

The article predicts credit unions will start using video to market to their members, stating that it might appeal to the younger generations.

 

But run-of-the-mill videos aren’t good enough, according to experts. The videos most contain an emotional testimony about how the credit union affects or engages in the lives of the customer.

 

If you take a step back, before putting an effort into this brand of marketing, you must make sure you have a way to place these videos in front of your membership—either with email or social media. DigitalMailer has partners that specialize in increasing your social media presence—ask your account manager about our partners so you can get started today.

 

The Latino Market Is Calling

 

President Barack Obama initiated executive orders two months ago that would allow nearly 5 million of the 11 million undocumented immigrants to continue living in the United States. The Credit Union Times is predicting that this could have a huge impact on financial institutions that capitalize on the situation.

 

Experts suggested understanding and using social and political awareness of immigration issues to step up marketing messages to attract new Hispanic members. While Hispanics have the same financial needs as the general population, the article suggested that credit unions develop precise marketing messages to Hispanics.

 

With the ARB+ email platform, you can create specific email lists, based on specific demographics. You can even take it a step further by utilizing variable fields to focus on specific age groups or to recommend the member visit a specific branch depending on their location. You can learn more about personalizing your emails by requesting out whitepaper, “Build a Better Email,” which you can request by clicking here.

 

 

If you would like to see the range of solutions we offer, and how they may help your credit union reach its digital marketing goals, visit www.digitalmailer.com


November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Filed under: Blogging,Uncategorized — 11:12 am

DigitalMailer’s staff is thankful for our clients, as well as a few other things!

(more...)


November 10, 2014

Thank you, Veterans!

Filed under: Veteran's Day — 12:20 pm

It was called “The Great War” back when the world was innocent enough to think it was the war to end all wars. Then after Germany invaded Poland in 1939, the Great War became World War I. Officially, it ended June 28, 1919, with the Treaty of Versailles, but fighting ceased seven months earlier with an armistice so world leaders to discuss terms of peace. It was to begin on “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.”

To remember the sacrifice of those who served in the Great War, the allied nations observed the first Armistice Day on November 11, 1919. Nations held parades and businesses paused briefly at 11 a.m. to honor those who served. In 1938, Armistice Day became a legal holiday, committed to the cause of world peace.

Fast forward to 1954 and two wars later: World War I clearly hadn’t been the final war, and the U.S. Congress changed the name to Veterans Day to honor veterans of all wars.

Just like the DigitalMailer family, your members/customers and staff include veterans and current service members. Here are some suggestions for acknowledging them:

•       Invite staff to set a reminder on their calendars for 11 a.m. November 11, and stop to honor veterans and their families.

•       During the week, give service members or veterans coupons for a free drink at a local coffee house.

•       Consider making a donation in your institution’s name to the USO, Wounded Warrior Project or Disabled American Veterans.


August 4, 2014

Join Us for Our Summer Workshop Series!

Filed under: Banks,Credit Unions,email marketing,eStrategy,Webinars — 2:54 pm

DigitalMailer is now offering one-time-only summer workshops on a variety of topics that can help you save money and improve customer relationships. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or just starting out, we have a lot of useful information to improve your marketing and digital delivery strategy.

Choose from any of these courses:

The Power of Email

Thursday, August 7th at 1 p.m. EDT

Learn tips for better open and click-through rates, as well as the ROI of email marketing in this information packed webinar! You will see successful onboarding campaigns as well as automated cross-selling tips from other financial institutions.

Gearing Your Emails for Your Audience

Wednesday, August 13th at 1 p.m. EDT

In this webinar you can find out how to best reach Millennials, as well as fine-tune your message for all customers based on their demographics. We will work through tips on subject lines, layouts and email content to help you get you the most out of each campaign.

Tips & Tools for a Better Sales Culture

Tuesday, August 19th at 1 p.m. EDT

You hired tellers, not sales people, so how can you help them make the most out of every customer interaction? We will go over small changes your staff can make for easier conversations, as well as tools to help you gather information about customers to target them later for promotions.

Is your Largest Branch Open for Business?

Wednesday, August 27th at 1 p.m. EDT

When it comes to virtual branches, every financial institution of every size is now on an equal playing field. The question you must ask yourself is, “Does my financial institution push this resource to it’s fullest potential?”

What are you waiting for? Sign up now for any or all of these exciting workshops and learn how you can take your organization to the next level.

(Image Credit: “Workshop” by Rae Allen | Flickr.com, used under Creative Commons)


July 22, 2014

We’re Going Back to FinovateFall!

Filed under: Banks,Credit Unions,eStrategy,Finovate,technology — 10:00 am

The news is out…we’re going back to the big dance.

My Virtual StrongBox has been selected to present at FinovateFall 2014! We’ll be debuting some awesome new features we’ve added to the product since its debut two years ago at FinovateFall 2012.

Finovate is the premier showcase for financial technology. If you’re familiar with companies and products like DashLane, MoneyDesktop and Yodlee, it might be because they were onstage at a Finovate conference.

Finovate conferences last only a few days and are conducted with terrific speed and focus. There are no long-winded presentations, no foot-dragging…every presentation gets the same amount of time (seven minutes, not one second more) and must be focused on the demonstration of the product or service in action.

Tech writers, investment firms, big banks, think-tanks and many more attend FinovateFall each year to see what’s new in the world of financial technology. They tingle with anticipation with each new presenter, waiting to see what new advancement they have to offer…and watching the clock to make sure the speaker avoids “the gong.”

Why We’re So Excited

My Virtual StrongBox began with a simple idea: “where can people save their important documents online, securely?” Traditional cloud storage solutions just weren’t safe for things like wills, deeds, birth certificates and other crucial articles. We created My Virtual StrongBox to be the online version of a safe deposit box, a service that has been around for hundreds of years in banks and credit unions of all sizes.

Even as more personal banking is done online and via mobile app, more documents are being shared electronically, like insurance policies, healthcare cards, medical histories, to name a few. It only makes sense to have a service like My Virtual StrongBox to store those electronic documents privately and to manage them in conjunction with the people customers trust most in life.

But no good technology stays the same over two full years. As users increase and people start taking advantage of the service, new needs come to light. Good ideas emerge and fall into place. The technology surrounding the product improves and the product improves along with it. My Virtual StrongBox is improving, with greater functionality and accessibility, more customization, and better features for the clients that offer it to their users. What you’ll see at this FinovateFall presentation is version 2.0 of a product that is already helping customers and clients in ten states, at fourteen different FI’s of all sizes.

We can’t wait to show you what we’ve been working on. Keep an eye on our My Virtual StrongBox twitter feed and our LinkedIn page for more information as it happens.

 


July 10, 2014

WE could’ve told you THAT!

Filed under: e-mail,email marketing,Marketing — 11:37 am

Stop the presses! People still read email! …wait, how is THAT news?

Well, the New York Times recently published an article all about email newsletters – how they’re still one of the least expensive, most practical ways of spreading news about your organization.

From the article:

Newsletters are clicking because readers have grown tired of the endless stream of information on the Internet, and having something finite and recognizable show up in your inbox can impose order on all that chaos. In fact, the comeback of email newsletters has been covered in Fast CompanyThe Atlantic and Medium, but I missed those articles because, really, who can keep up with a never-ending scroll of new developments? That’s where email newsletters, with their aggregation and summaries, come in.

They Gray Lady does a great job of defending email newsletters from all the naysayers and poo-pooers out there who question the validity of the medium. Really, though, all anyone had to do to know how well email is still working, as a way of spreading information was ask us.

In the last fourteen years, we’ve helped hundreds of clients put out email newsletters with important information their subscribers may have missed. Heck, we run several varieties of newsletter every month to our clients and contacts. In the last six months, our company newsletter is opened by roughly 20% of the subscriber list (not a bad open rate) and gets an average click-through rate around 5% (which is high). Newsletters aren’t as targeted as other campaigns but they also don’t “sell hard” the way other campaigns do. They’re there to inform.

Don’t worry, Email Newsletters…we’ll always love you.

If you’re looking to step up your email newsletter game, take a look at the ARB, our email marketing solution that comes with the best customer service around. Come learn more today!

Picture: “Newspapers B&W” by Jon S, via Flickr. Used under Creative Commons.


July 3, 2014

The Founding Fathers Would’ve LOVED The Internet

Filed under: Uncategorized — 10:33 am

Happy 4th of July

Tomorrow, DigitalMailer and many (if not all) of its clients across the nation will be closed in celebration of July 4th, marking the 238th year since the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

How exciting it must have been 238 years ago when Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin were courting the votes of the Continental Congress, desperate to get their buy-in on what had to have been the most important document any of the signers had seen in their entire lives.

Men rode horses and carriages for hundreds of miles to be present for the birth of this nation. They argued and bickered and shouted and reasoned and, eventually, brought forward a document that would declare our independence from British rule. It was a lot of work, and well worth it, but one thing we can’t help but wonder…wouldn’t the Internet have made the whole thing so much easier?

Imagine Ben Franklin putting aside the potbelly stove and bifocals and devoting his attention to coming up with the first ever smart phone. Granted, phones didn’t exist yet, but with enough elbow grease, Franklin probably could’ve made that happen, too.

[Above: Franklin Snaps a Selfie (dailymail.co.uk)]

 John Adams would’ve loved using social media to debate his talking points and wrangle all those votes from the rest of the Continental Congress.

[Above: John Adams should learn to use "Mark All as Read,"  fast. (Shoutlet.com)]

Thomas Jefferson probably would’ve found the entire writing process much simpler if he was able to use GitHub to track changes and manage the “source”. Heck, even if he just used Basecamp, he’d have been a lot happier.

[Above: Thomas Jefferson would've insisted that Monticello have good wi-fi. (fastcompany.co)]

You would think that the Declaration would’ve worked well as an eDoc with eSign capabilities…but if all the signatures were electronic, how could John Hancock have made his mark on history?

[Above: John Hancock would've loved all the typography websites out there today. (histagrams.com)]

Even with the brilliant advances of men like Franklin and Jefferson, the technology of 1776 lagged very far behind our modern-day conveniences. Still, this relatively small group of men were able to meet, to speak, and to work collaboratively without the aid of GoToMeeting or Skype. They hand-wrote every little detail from the first word to the last without the help of Microsoft Word. They kept careful records and preserved them for generations so that we could enjoy looking on them today. The Founding Fathers might not have had the abundance of technology we do today, but one thing’s for sure; they knew how to get things done.

We wish you all a happy, safe, fun Fourth of July. We’ll see you again on Monday!


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