As product manager in charge of all digital offerings at Vericast Rachel Stephens keeps financial institutions up to date on household and deposit acquisition strategies, digital and technology trends, and generational marketing.

When it comes to being the primary financial institution for your account holders, it’s tempting to want to be everything for everyone. We want millennials and baby boomers. We want new movers and small businesses.

Sounds good, right?

But is this possible — or even preferable?

In order to attract the very best account holders for your institution — and then to keep them, to engage with them, to deepen your relationships with them — you first have to understand what it is you have to offer them.

Know thyself.

The most successful acquisition program begins with understanding the specific goals of your institution.

  • Is there a specific area or segment you want to target?
  • What is your definition of success?
  • What KPIs will you measure to gauge your progress?

Until these questions are answered, it’s fruitless to start acquiring new account holders. In fact, it can be counterproductive. Acquiring anyone and everyone that walks through your doors will lead to higher attrition rates, more churn, and the costly cycle of gaining new accounts simply to replace the ones that are leaving.

It’s not an approach that will lead to sustained growth.

Here’s a very practical example.

Many attractive prospects are active online — via desktop and mobile, even voice (Alexa, order new checks). Wouldn’t it be great to reach them and convert them via digital channels? Yes!

But, wait.

Finding them is one thing. But what about serving them?

Can your institution support the various touchpoints of an online customer journey? It makes no sense to go down this path if your web, email, social and other channels aren’t up to the task of providing a seamless and frictionless experience for your prospects and account holders.

Know thyself.

It’s Rule Number 1 in today’s rules of engagement.