Digital Disruption and Why Lenders Should Care About Brand
William Phelan | 1/30/2019
Digital Lending, Commercial Credit, Small Business Credit
Every business leader faces the challenge of communicating brand in a way that’s relevant to customers and prospects. Historically, business strategies put more emphasis on marketing products - but as technology continues to advance - new solutions are emerging and creating an overcrowded, hard-to-differentiate marketplace. The result is organizations taking different go-to-market approaches and prioritizing customer preferences. Now, organizations must proactively consider customers’ immediate and future expectations to address services, solutions and user experiences, as well as the values that embody its brand.
Over the years, companies like IBM, General Electric, Apple, Google and HP have evolved with simple, concise and meaningful messages, demonstrating their commitment to forward-thinking and innovation. These technology companies have inspired other organizations, across all verticals, to reconnect with their own brand story in order to build ‘brand equity’ that results in targeted customer retention and attraction.
Brand is important for banks too.
Small business owners value their relationship with their bank. In fact, 64% would prefer to have their business loans funded by a traditional bank or credit union” -- Frank Aloi, founder and CEO of ath Power Consulting
According to Harvard Business Review, 64% of consumers cite shared values as the primary reason they have a relationship with a brand. In order to effectively strengthen customer relationships and attract prospects that share core values, banks and fintechs need to live their shared values out loud – and communicate those values through story.
Opportunity for financial institutions is clear; it’s important for banks and other commercial lenders to ensure their brand strategies both resonate with customers and differentiate them from competitors.
Rethinking your branding strategy?
There is much to consider when it comes to evaluating the value and costs associated with a brand refresh. It’s important to ensure evolving your brand will bring your company long-term brand equity and grow your market share.
To help with your decision-making process, I’ve outlined a few scenarios where a brand refresh may be beneficial:
- Current brand is a misrepresentation of your brand story Just as technology advances and evolves, so does your brand. Products, services and customer needs may have progressed, and your current brand doesn’t convey the value being delivered.
- Lost in the noise: As competition emerges, you need to ensure that your brand creates buzz. Powerful messaging and clean, bold design elements that align to target personas can set you apart from the pack.
- You’re too complicated: Design elements, website navigation, messaging and pricing should be easy to understand.
- Business model changes: As your company grows – whether you are merging companies, adding new services and products, or changing focus – your brand story should be clearly communicated through the problems you solve and the solutions you offer.
Putting it into Action - PayNet Sparking Transformation.
As the industry has experienced a digital revolution, so has PayNet. We recently reconnected with our own brand identity to ensure that our story, which is one of digital transformation and commitment to the PayNet community of lenders, was being told. By doing so, we decided it was time to evolve our brand and bring to life the values and innovation we provide.
Our mission is to provide lenders with more knowledge for confident decisions, fueling growth for the Main Street economy. As a trusted partner, we give our customers future market non-biased insights that help make immediate business-making decisions, ultimately increasing lending confidence and efficiency.
With a legacy of innovation and integrity at our core, we want to ensure our brand story is communicated through the transformational and innovative solutions that we bring to the small business credit market. To align our core values of growing a stronger economy, with the technology advancement our customers need in order to be successful, we have a fresh new look that we are excited to share.
See how we strive to:
- Be transformational, not transactional.
- Build a community, not a commodity.
- Prioritize integrity and trust, not the bottom line.