Do you have a brand? I don’t mean a name or a logo, but a brand. Your brand is about the customer experience with your business, the way you differentiate your store or chain of stores from other financial service centers, the personality of your business. Everybody has a brand. It’s how they use it that makes it a successful brand or just another also ran. One way to strategically use your brand is to create trust with your customers with it. Why is this important? Because you perform mission critical transactions with your customers. They trust that you provide them with the cash they need to manage their lives, they entrust you with considerable amounts of personal information and they trust that when they hand over their money to pay a bill or wire funds that they will get where they need to be in a timely fashion.
Also in today’s economy consumers are becoming more and more skeptical with their financial institutions. According to the 2011 Edelman Trust in U.S. Financial Services Survey, of the top factors listed by 75% or more of consumers surveyed, financial institutions came up short of expectations. For example, 91% of those surveyed indicated that Honest Communication was an important factor in the reputation of their FI, but only 67% of those consumers perceived that their bank lived up to that aspect of their relationship. Similarly, 84% said Open and Transparent Practices were important, but nearly 1 in 3 said their bank or credit Union fell short. 75% said fair and competitive prices were important, but only a little over half felt that they were provided. In these areas where financial institutions are suffering from an enormous trust deficit, financial service centers seem to excel. This may provide a rare opportunity for FSCs to not only secure their relationships with existing customers, but to reach up demographically into a whole new pool of dissatisfied bank customers.
So how do you build trust with your brand?