Notably Quotable: Financial Marketers Won’t Earn Respect Without Data

The Financial Brand's contributor-at-large, Mark Arnold, asked bank and credit union marketers what they need to do to earn more respect and be taken more seriously by the C-suite and their management peers. Here's what they had to say (hint: it's all about metrics, strategic objectives and financial performance).

deva-_annamalai“Financial marketers should start using data driven decisions to plan strategy. Make analytics your best friend. Measure everything which is measurable. When you go ask for budget to launch a new campaign, your C-level executives would like to see an argument and justification based on logic and data. Cold hard truth based out of data insights will beat warm fuzzy assumptions every single time. When you start showing results which are trackable, measurable and improves over time, you get to win the respect of your management and your peers.”

Deva Annamalai
SVP/Marketing & Communications Technology Group Manager
Zions First National Bank

amy_davis“Become a numbers geek! If you don’t understand the basic financials of your credit union or make efforts to track your marketing effectiveness, then you’re no more than an expense on the balance sheet. Strive for marketing to been seen as more than an expense; strive to be seen as an investment in future growth.”

Amy Davis
VP of Marketing
Red Canoe Credit Union

andy_ravens“Anticipate the needs of customers, provide measurable results tied to strategic goals, and excel in transparent communication — both internally and externally.”

Andrew Ravens
VP/Director of Public Relations & Social Media
Eastern Bank

josh_kroll“Respect is most often earned by someone with a high degree of integrity who consistently returns valuable insight to peers. Sure, the financial marketer has to justify any sort of investment, but equally as much he has to be able to defend what does not garner his attention. The reason for declining a prospective campaign or event is as important as are the reasons behind requesting a budget; strategic choice inherently includes both acceptance and rejection, and by not doing some things, a real sense of focus is possible. Intentionally passing on some traditional marketing plans creates the perfect time and space to seize other new and exciting opportunities. Be sure to effectively communicate what you aren’t doing and why, and if you can’t then gaining respect is a faint wish at best.”

Josh Kroll
VP of Marketing
Park Side Federal Credit Union

john_wapush“Get a deep understanding of what drives success for your institution, and map your team’s quarterly/annual goals to that success. Condition your peers to understand marketing basics: mix, positioning, frequency, weight, tracking/analytics, iteration of ideas/tactics, etc. Continue to learn new techniques and marketing success formulas — bring in outside experts where needed. Tie everything to profitably attaining and retaining win-win relationships — for your institution and the consumer). Ensuring that you are aligned on strategy while demonstrating to your peers that marketing can lead to sustainable, profitable growth is a potent recipe for success with the C-level.”

John Waupsh
Chief Creative Officer

elisa_rode“Marketers must demonstrate an understanding of the financials and the business of the credit union — what products are worth and what truly affects the bottom line. This means marketers must have a seat at the table so they understand the big picture; and, marketers need to work closely with the CFO and the CIO to understand the numbers, consumers, opportunities, and the value of their initiatives.”

Elisa Rode, President
kearley & company, Inc.

terry_young“Business is about finding solutions to problems. In business, you are either part of the problem, or part of the solution. If you are part of the problem, you will likely be solved. The idea is, naturally, to be part of the solution. As part of the ‘solution,’ it is important to let C-suite and management know what you are doing to contribute to the cause. This can be as simple as a broadly-shared monthly activity report. However, rather than merely reporting on activities, fill the report with ‘wins’ and quantitative results. It’s not bragging. It’s marketing… yourself. It is difficult to earn respect if senior management does not know what you are doing. Respect often comes slowly. It is earned. But building on month-after-month of successes will foster the notion that you are a get-it-done marketer. If you don’t do enough to produce a monthly highlight report, that’s a problem.”

Terry Young
Director of Communications and Marketing
Catalyst Corporate Federal Credit Union

“Marketers must learn to appreciate their own value in financial institutions and not let the C-Suite intimidate them. This is becoming easier as more marketers enter the ranks of senior level bank and credit union management. Marketers must also find ways to quantify the value of their efforts. Nothing speaks to the C-Suite like hardcore numbers. Marketers can also rely on one of their best skills: communication. Communicate the value and worth of marketing efforts to all employees — at every opportunity — to build a pro-marketing culture.”

Mark Arnold, President of On The Mark Strategies

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