Democratize Location Intelligence and Boost Engagement
Not long ago, only very large credit unions could adopt the kind of location analytics software that is commonplace in larger banks. This technology allowed the fortunate few to make better decisions about opening new branches or how to target customers with personalized, location-specific offers.
Early location intelligence technology was so complex that these credit unions would have to hire entire teams of data scientists just to figure out how on earth to use it. But times are changing fast. Today, user-friendly analytic tools are transforming the way that credit unions approach their location data.
Location intelligence is quickly becoming a democratized asset, making it possible for the average credit union executive – even in smaller credit unions – to make the most of it.
Now that location analytics have become more accessible, the question that confronts executives is how this vast quantity of information can help generate more revenue and strengthen customer relationships. While new mapping technology offers interesting data points, to make the investment worthwhile it is important for decision-makers to understand what actionable insights this data stream can yield.
Credit unions are already using location intelligence to creatively accomplish a wide variety of goals, but there are two simple ways they can deploy mapping technology to immediately drive customer engagement and boost the bottom line.
Assessing Branch Performance. Location analytics can help more accurately assess branch performance and make strategic changes as needed. In turbulent economic times, many credit unions must make difficult choices about whether or not to close branches.
When making these decisions, credit unions generally rely on benchmarks based on the historical performance of the branch in question. This approach effectively punishes high-performing branches by expecting locations that have done well in the past to perform even better in the future, without considering demographic changes that affect their ability to grow at the same pace.
Location intelligence provides more comprehensive insight into demographic shifts in a given area. For instance, you might discover that many loyal customers have relocated, resulting in weakening performance in local branches. Rather than taking this as a cue to close that branch, credit unions could take this as an opportunity to ramp up marketing efforts to reach new consumers who are unfamiliar with the brand or, alternatively, modify their approach to better meet the specific needs of this consumer base.
Location intelligence tools allow credit unions to assess the true market potential of branches, helping them evaluate performance using context and valuable information about micro-markets and member demographics rather than extraneous, uncontrollable environmental factors.
Building Stronger Relationships. Beyond providing internal insight into branch productivity, location intelligence helps credit unions build richer relationships with their members. Every interaction presents an opportunity to gather valuable location data and leverage it in a way that better meets that member’s needs.
Until recently, the only information that credit unions had about their members came from their mailing address. Now many credit unions offer mobile apps, which give unprecedented insight about where their members are choosing to perform transactions, whether on the bus, at their office or in a retail location.
In a world where smartphone check-ins are common, credit unions now have insight into members’ most current wants and needs. Using mapping software that incorporates data from mobile apps, credit unions can proactively provide members with information about where the closest branch or ATM is located.
If a member has checked in at locations near a number of auto dealers or real estate agents, it might be worth reaching out to that person with possible car loan or mortgage offers. Working with other retailers, credit unions could even provide coupons to restaurants and shops that would pop up on the member’s smartphone when they are near to these locations, strengthening the value of membership.
Today, location analytics are no longer the tools of data scientists and GIS specialists alone. Employees throughout the organization now have access to a clear view of consumer demographics and behavior, allowing them to make more strategic decisions and be more productive in day-to-day workflows.
Credit unions that are quick to adopt these new technologies – and allow broad access to their employee base – will stay ahead of the competition and forge stronger relationships with their members.