On a recent visit to Majorca I was wandering the streets of the Capital Palma that is full of that uniquely European stylish shopping – as I approached one ‘shop’ at first glance it looked like a mid to high end home furnishing store (see the picture) but on closer inspection it was a BANK! The layout was fresh and clean a Greeter was stood at the door armed with an iPad or similar and was directing ‘guests’ to the appropriate part of the bank, the staff were smart but casually dressed and the whole atmosphere was relaxed. What a contrast to the traditional image of a bank and what an experience for customers and staff alike.
As high street branches of banks are continuing to be closed by increasingly cost conscious Bankers who see the high street as an expensive bricks and mortar option when the have the very tempting alternative of pushing us all on-line and reducing their ‘cost to serve’ …. this is a really good ‘counter’ strategy (pardon the pun).
Make the bank a destination, somewhere that you can forge strong personal relationships with customers, where you can project a brand that is contemporary and relevant not increasingly distant and divorced hiding behind the walls of faceless internet banking and remote Contact Centres.