Banks are always in need of good marketing themes and promotion tie-ins. When marketing is paired with an event or a holiday it becomes even more effective. Promotions on bank website supported by keywords or in the branch supported by word of mouth, leveraging events can add 10% to 20% more marketing effectiveness. Certain holiday’s and events tend to lend themselves to bank promotions, while others do not. Holiday’s like MLK, Jr. Day, Valentines, Mardi Gras, St. Patrick’s Day, Father’s Day and others are good, but they really don’t move the needle in terms of marketing effectiveness. Further, no one seems to like their banker pulling pranks on them for April Fools.
However, some holidays and events are more effective than others. Earth Day, for example, as forgettable as it is, tends to be efficient at certain promotions for green-type accounts. Back to School/Fall, tends to be very effective at driving traffic to branches and websites for a variety of products.
We looked at the data of the past and then looked ahead to see what events will be hyper-trending. What follows is a list of holidays and events that have been or are predicted to be effective themes for banks to market around.
Maybe it is having birthday cake in branches for July 4th or maybe it is a deposit promotion on the website with the ability to vote for your favorite World Cup soccer team, whatever it is our 2014 marketing calendar should provide you a little inspiration and help you plan for major events that will trend well and capture both business and retail customer’s attention.
World Economic Summit (Jan 22 – 25) – This high profile conclave in Davos is never short of thought leading news for the affluent. Banks could give updates or reports on major shifts from the conference to their small business and high net worth individuals.
Super Bowl XLVIII (Feb 2) – Since Super Bowl is one of the most talked about and discussed sporting events of the year, banks can get a lift by offering prizes, picking sides and conducting promotions to capitalize off the trend. Given that a Super Bowl ad is about $4 million for 30 seconds, maybe spending a couple hundred will pay off?
Winter Olympics (Feb. 7 - 19) – The Olympic Games always present a good sports-related marketing opportunity to plan around. While you may not have rights to the logo, tie-ins and themed promotions are usually a hit.
Easter (Apr. 20) – Maybe it is just the time of the year, but Easter is a popular sales season for a variety of bank retail and commercial products. In addition to Easter themed promotions, incorporating Easter eggs/bunny, pastel colors, candy or holding an Easter inspired event, will get people hopping for joy. Spring is a time for renewal, so banks tend to use this time to roll out new products.
Earth Day (Apr. 22) – Now, more than ever, retail bank customers seem to responded to “green and clean.” Earth Day offers plenty of opportunities to get the public involved and increase sales through brand loyalty and direct marketing. You can launch a campaign to encourage others to save an animal or hold an eco-friendly event.
Swiss Banking (April) – April is the deadline for Swiss banks with US assets to declare them to the Justice Department. While the event will have a nefarious taint to it, there are many legitimate US citizens that are worried about privacy and diversification. If done right and with a little humor, banks can capture the public’s attention for savings during this time.
G8 Summit (June 4-5th) – The Summit with the world’s “Big 8” countries always grabs economic and business news. This is a perfect time to roll out business related content and promotions tied to key G8 headlines along the lines of inflation, rising interest rates, sustainability, foreign exchange and debt management.
FIFA World Cup (June 12th to July 13th) – Soccer will take center stage as the biggest sporting event in the world kicks off. For that matter, all things Brazil will gain in popularity for banks interested in marketing around either trend.
Independence Day (July 4) – BBQs at the branch, patriotic content on the web and red, white, and blue promotions, participation in parades and social media around this time all seem to be effective.
World War I (August 4) – The 100th anniversary of the Great War’s start takes place and banks with patriotic, military or veteran promotion may gain traction.
Labor Day / Back To School / Fall (Sept. 1) – Considered the unofficial end to summer, Labor Day serves as a day of rest, but that doesn’t mean you should relax your marketing efforts. Because of the threat of year-end, September is one of the best times to market almost any bank product from loans to deposits.
Halloween (Oct. 31) – While we don’t have any hard data on Halloween promotions, a great number of banks we spoke with about holiday promotions anecdotally told us that Halloween-themed promotions and employee dress up drives traffic. Costume, pumpkin carving and “scary face” activities are said to bring in traffic.
Veterans Day (Nov. 11) – You will never find a more patriotic bunch than bankers and Veterans Day is a day we honor those who served our country in the Armed Forces. Hero, military, public service and other accounts are great to market around this time, as are just a simple recognition of your veteran customers (collect the data ahead of time).
After the second week in November we suggest banks drop to 3rd gear on marketing since the data shows that marketing dollars lose their effectiveness. However, since the first two weeks of January happens to be one of the best times to motivate savings (HSA accounts in particular) and loan offers, we suggest you take the time to prepare for a big January push. New Years is all about getting a fresh start and this time is a perfect time to add new products or services, launch a new marketing campaign, or even hold a fun event to kick off the New Year.
Hopefully, this calendar will motivate your marketing group to do a little forward thinking and prepare to boost revenue for 2014. A little planning, a little creativity and a moderate amount of effort, banks can be very successful at recognizing a suitable return on their themed marketing dollars.
Submitted by Chris Nichols on January 09, 2014