The votes are in. With over 1,000 ballots cast by The Financial Brand’s readers in the Best Banking Blog poll, we now have our top 10 blogs of 2012. Congratulations to all the winners!
#1 – JD Power & Associates Banking Blog
With 367 votes cast, JD Power takes the top spot and wins Gold for its Banking Blog. The purpose of their Banking Blog is to help readers translate the firm’s research into actionable, results-oriented plans. Managed by Karen Licker, the blog shares a steady stream of insights, always punctuated with data derived from the many annual JD Powers studies. For bank and credit union execs looking for an even blend of market research and strategic advice, the JPDA Banking Blog tops the list.
- Maximizing the On-Boarding Experience
- Should Banks Even Bother Using Social Media?
- Understanding Actual vs. Intended Customer Attrition
#2 – Snarketing 2.0
Ron Shevlin’s reputation as one of the banking industry’s favorite thought leaders was cemented with 265 votes, earning him the Silver Medal. Shevlin has been blogging steadily for years, and his prodigious pen continues to pump out posts that tickle the intellect. He delivers big, blunt doses of reality with his keenly analytical style, and while often wry, Shevlin is never caustic. You could call him the silver-tongued skeptic. He’s edgy and in your face… but in a nice way. Even those who disagree with Ron still love him. And his posts always generate healthy discourse. In fact, Snarketing 2.0 probably has the most robust discussions of any blog in banking. The comments are often as interesting as the posts themselves.
- “Opinionated, insightful, useful and funny as hell.”
- “Brings the fire with timely commentary and sarcastic wit.”
- “Ron tells it like it is. Love him or hate him, he leaves nothing off the table.”
- “Ron Shevlin says what everyone is thinking. It’s great, inspiring, hilarious, and all around entertaining.”
- “Critical thinking leavened by humor.”
- “Consistent, funny, polarizing, smart.”
- “Informative, analytical, and most of the time hilarious.”
- “Informed, entertaining and a straight shooter.”
- “Ron always calls it like he sees it and gives readers straight talk about real issues.”
- You Can’t Market Financial Services To Women
- Quantipulation In Action: Inbound Vs. Outbound Marketing
- The Best Bank Customer Service Story I Ever Heard
#3 – ACTON’s Financial Marketing Insights
Published nearly every day, the Financial Marketing Insights blog by ACTON Financial Marketing is chalk full of practical advice and real world examples. The authors of this website aren’t distracted by marketing buzz and vogue trends, and instead share their observations on the fundamentals of marketing financial services. They understand that effective bank marketing isn’t always sexy, and take a meat-and-potatoes, basic blocking-and-tackling perspective — a refreshing reminder that financial institutions need to stay focused on ROI and results. In recognition of their blogging success, readers voted to bestow the Bronze Medal to ACTON.
- “Down to earth marketing that just makes sense.”
- “It often takes on a particular bank or credit union for doing something stupid.”
- “Frequency of posts, and the fact that it provides a mix of useful marketing tips and social commentary about banking in general.”
#4 – Bank Marketing Strategies
The Bank Marketing Strategies blog is written by Jim Marous, who along with Ron Shevlin, is one of only two writers in the financial industry recognized as regular contributors to The Financial Brand.
- 5 Banking Megatrends Impacting Consumers
- The Mass Affluent: An Elusive Bank Target
- Banks Include Retargeting As Part Of Digital Marketing Strategy
#5 – Banking.com
The Banking.com blog, published by Intuit Financial Services, garnered this representative comment: “I love their ‘what we’re reading’ section, because it’s the perfect aggregator of information from across the web. The original content is also great and informative.”
- RPE: Measuring Employee Worth
- What We’re Reading: Continuity, Mobile Usage and Mobile Commerce
- The Impact of Baby Boomers & Seniors on Online Banking
#6 – CU Insight
This site curates content relevant to credit union leaders from around the web, mixing in original material from industry experts and CU execs. Fans of CU Insight appreciate having a ton of information consolidated from a range of sources, packaged for easy digestion.
- “The only place you need to go to get all credit union news. I don’t have the time to peruse the others…they have it all.”
- “They are the most convenient!”
- “Their daily newsletter is full of useful information.”
- Three Steps All Credit Unions Must Take to Prepare for the Next Disaster
- 4 Ways to Still Keep the ‘Free’ in Free Checking
- The Year of the Member
#7 – Bank Innovation
Bank Innovation, as one voter puts it, “has a mix of news and personal voices on what can make banking better for everyone.” Another added, “It provides great insight along with the latest banking technology news, and tells you more of the story, not just the headline.”
#8 – Netbanker
Jim Bruene, founder of the popular Finovate series of conferences on financial innovations, has been publishing the Netbanker blog since 1995 — almost before Al Gore invented the internet. You can always count on Jim to share interesting banking technologies, many you might not have heard of otherwise.
- “They cover big innovations as well as small changes that are happening that are making a big difference.”
- “I enjoy their focus on new companies and technologies.”
- “Lots of screen shots and plenty of source credit.”
- Chase Bank’s Remodel: The Death of the “Swiss Army Knife” Banking Homepage?
- The Best Card/Banking Activation Email Ever? Simple Innovation #7
- BillGuard is First Financial Service to Integrate with the New iPhone Passbook Wallet
#9 – GonzoBanker
The crew at Cornerstone Advisors earns a well deserved spot among the Readers Choice Top 10 for their GonzoBanker blog. They’ve been publishing über-strategic material with their own unique Gonzo style since 2001. The blog features perspectives from no less than 17 different company employees, spanning topics ranging from marketing and branches to operations and lending.
- Is the ‘Branch of the Future’ Here?
- The Compensation Side of a Sales and Service Culture
- The Real Bank 2.0: Preparing for the Future of Banking the Gonzo Way
#10 – Financial Services Club Blog
Authored by Chris Skinner, the Financial Services Club blog supports a stellar networking group of senior executives in the European financial services industry.
- “Something new every day, thought provoking, challenging, good overview of what’s going on and what’s coming next.”
- “Chris Skinner is simply a great blogger. Op Ed pieces, video, photos, insightful, cutting, irreverent….all that is needed and wanted from a blogger.”
- “Chris Skinner is simply one of the most brilliant minds in banking, and he’s always an entertaining read.”
- “Good insights and good use of pictures, graphs, and — very important — humor.”
- The 15 Most Innovative Firms Providing Banking Solutions
- Banking For a Better World
- NFC Has Been Strangled at Birth
Write-Ins & Other Honorable Mentions
79 people submitted write-in candidates. Strategic Marketing by MarketMatch was nominated 22 times, more than any of the other write-ins. Here’s the complete list of write-in blogs:
- Andera Blog
- Celent Banking Blog
- FICO Banking Analytics
- Jeff for Banks
- Long Lasting Ideas x3
- Mark Arnold
- mFoundry Blog
- SAP Banking Blog
- Shared iDiz
- Strategic Marketing by MarketMatch x22
- Tekfin x4
- The Bankwatch
- The Raddon Report
- TheBoldWar.com x10
- Tomorrow’s Transactions x4
- We The Savers
- Zoot Blog x12