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5 Ways Community Banks Can Generate New Customers

Community banks are beginning to shift their marketing focus to digital as they face tough competition from larger banks. They often lack the resources and staff to market as national banks can and, as a result, community banks must do more with less and focus on digital marketing tactics that can rapidly return value to them. Below are five digital marketing approaches that can help locally owned-community banks generate new customers:

1.    Create a high-quality website

A high-quality website provides relevant, helpful content and a good user experience. Spending money on website development is not guaranteed to be high-quality or result in more deposits. Although you can create some websites for a small financial investment, it’s important that sites meet the needs of your customers. They must also perform well to show in search results. For example, ensure the site loads within 3 seconds, has a fair balance between content and ads, and new visitors can find information quickly. Focus on providing clear and easy-to-follow steps on opening a checking account, starting a line of credit, or investing in a certificate of deposit. The idea is that the easier you make it for someone to become a customer, the more likely they are to become one.

2.    Optimize your website for local keywords

Every page on your site should focus on relevant keywords to show up better in search engine results pages. It requires building a keyword portfolio of the search terms that will bring the most qualified traffic to your site. You’ll also want to list keywords focused on the areas you serve. For example, a community bank with branches in Bronx, New York, might include keywords like “Bronx community banks” or “Best checking accounts Bronx.” Even if your bank is not named “Bronx Community Bank,” it’s essential to rank on those search terms. After all, potential customers may not know your bank’s name.

3.    Use calls to action

Not every visitor will intuitively understand what you want them to do, so it’s crucial to state it explicitly. You can ask someone to call you, email you, add their name to a newsletter list, request more information, download a free guide, and much more. Have a plan for every page you create on your site and tell people what they should do at the end. It helps increase customer conversions, so your bank can grow. Make sure your call to action is clear and concise.

4.    Invest in creating your photos and videos

Potential customers like to get a feel for the bank’s brand and personality from the website or social media channels. Having photos of your actual employees engaging with your existing customers shows you’re proud of whom you do business with. For example, you can invest in a photo or video shoot showing your team members engaged with the local businesses and customers your serve or your team involved in local charity events.

5.    Connect with new customers on social media

Organic social media marketing is another powerful and cost-effective tool for reaching new customers. Its massive audience and diverse demographics can be leveraged to promote your banking products, advertise holiday hours and events, and share information with local communities. Social media is great for sharing interesting statistics about your industry, graphics you’ve created, videos you’ve filmed, and more. Not everyone who sees what you post will become a customer, but it’s a great way to attract new attention.


Today, no matter how big or small your bank is, you must develop a solid digital strategy and create and run digital marketing campaigns. If not, you will lose the opportunity to connect with new customers. If your bank isn’t quite up to the challenge of building a digital marketing strategy, consider bringing in digital natives or partnering with a company that can provide technical services to create and maintain your bank’s digital marketing strategies.

Key Takeaways

  • Create a high-quality website
  • Optimize your website for local SEO
  • Use calls to action
  • Invest in creating your photos and videos
  • Connect with new customers on social media