By the end of your first year, you should be able to develop monthly performance goals for your various marketing programs and possibly even break down those goals. You should anticipate good and bad news. A slowdown in applications, card usage or other serious drop-offs in your performance measures indicate the need for immediate action. If you wait six months until it’s “time” to update your marketing plan, the damage to your program may take years to repair.
Some helpful, proactive hints include:
- Monitor credit card offers you see in your community – look for ads from other banks and credit unions. How does your offer compare?
- Keep an eye on card offers you get in the mail. Encourage your staff to bring in offers and compare to your card products.
- Regularly update the grid that shows where your bank ranks among its competitors in terms of rates and enhancements.
Acquisition Cost per New Account – What does it cost to acquire a new account? Large issuers can easily spend over $200 per account! Typically, for community banks it is considerably less. Of course, cost will depend on marketing and other administrative expenses. This is a blended figure that considers all marketing activities. You should keep track of your acquisition cost for each marketing strategy used (e.g. direct mail, employee incentives, brand promotions, etc.). Later, you can direct marketing dollars towards the most cost effective programs.
Decline Ratios – Without pre-screening a target market, your acceptance will vary. Declining more than 30-40% of responses could indicate a poor target market or credit criteria that is too stringent.
Promotion Measures – Any time you undertake a special promotion, that effort should be evaluated separately. What did it cost? What is your Return on Investment (ROI)? Management usually prefers seeing results stated as ROI. Do you recommend repeating it? If repeated, would you recommend any changes?
Advertising Assessment – Any time you invest in advertising, plan to take the time to write a memo to your marketing file assessing the value of that investment. Remember to track activity from your website.