How Banks Can Win By Marketing To Women

There are three key things banks need to do to be successful:

  1. Attract new customers
  2. Get more business from their existing customers
  3. Retain their customers

When I work with bank clients, these are the three success metrics we usually focus on.  By marketing and selling to women, banks can move the needle on all three of these metrics.  Right now I want to focus on #2 and #3..

Get more business from your existing customers

One of the key factors for getting more business from your existing customers and for keeping those customers is to build a stronger relationship with those customers.

In this MasterCard video, Nitin Sumangali talks about the importance of relationship banking, especially with women.


 According to research by MasterCard:

  • 33% of women want to have all their financial relationships with a single bank. 
  • 60% of women have confidence their primary bank can fulfill all their financial needs

This is excellent news for banks.  It means women WANT to go beyond the checking account to buy more products and services from their primary bank.  And they trust their bank's ability to fulfill all their financial needs. 

So selling more products and services to your existing female clients should be easy, if you know how to market and sell financial products to women.  For specific tips on how to do that, check out Selling Financial Services to Women.

Retaining customers

Why do customers leave banks?  The number one reason is lack of quality customer service according to a survey by Capmengi. Capmengi built its global banking “Customer Experience Index” from data captured through surveys involving 14,000 bank customers in 25 countries.  Here are the results:

Bank switching trigger
At the top of the list was — predictably — the quality of service the customer received, with 55% citing it as the #1 reason. The takeaway, according to the study, is that banks need to concentrate on their customer service in order to compensate for the banking industry’s negative image.

The study found that customers in every region rank branches and the internet as the most important channels, but customers are largely not receiving positive experiences through those channels.

”Most retail banks across the globe have struggled to define and produce consistent and differentiating customer experiences.”
—2011 Retail Banking Report

While banks may have minimized negative experiences, they still struggle to deliver positive experiences, specifically along the dimensions most important to customers.

This is a problem many banks face.  They have worked hard to reduce complaints, but they aren't delighting their customers.  Most banks know what to do to identify and fix problems, but sometimes struggle to identify what to implement to improve the overall customer experience.

Again, this is where women can be your biggest asset.  Women notice details. Small changes can make a big difference in creating an experience she loves. 

The key is to make changes that make her feel understood, and valued.  Banks can learn from credit unions on this one. One of the areas of customer satisfaction where credit unions win big is "value me as a customer"

Credit union members are twice as likely to be very- or extremely satisfied than bank customers. And almost nine out of 10 members say they are very- or extremely likely to continue using their credit union, about double that of bank customers. Credit union members are three times as likely as BofA’s customers to experience a trustworthy relationship and feel valued as a customer.

 Making your customers feel valued example

Project money winner

Summit Credit Union has a fantastic contest called Project Money.  Members of the community can apply to be a part of the contest.  Once participants are chosen, they are paired with financial experts at Summit who work with them to devise a plan where they can increase savings and reduce debt.  The winner receives $10,000.  The results are impressive.  

I love this program for so many reasons, but one of the main ones is that Summit doesn't just say,"we want to help you make smart financial decisions," they actually do it.  They show rather than tell.  Summit members can see members of their community actually achieving positive measurable results.   And that's huge.

There were a variety of participants, including women in different situations (married, single, single parent).    And believe me, women noticed that.  They saw regular women like themselves facing many of the same challenges they faced.  Powerful stuff.


Banks looking to attract new customers, sell more products and services to existing customers, and retain their current customers can move the needle by focusing on women. 

Women are looking for that one trusted financial institution they can do all their business with.  Be that institution by providing the superior customer experience she is craving.  For more specific ideas on how to do that, check out Selling Financial Services to Women.



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