The Importance of Engaging and Actionable Content During COVID-19

Woman using smartphoneOver the past few years, the use of online banking has been gaining steady momentum. Then COVID-19 happened, and it skyrocketed.

Since the start of 2020, mobile banking usage has seen an increase of 50 percent, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. With in-person banking virtually halted, it is imperative to keep customers informed and engaged through other means.

Gone are the days when a single email blast satisfies your customers. But with people stuck at home for a good chunk of this year, the number of digital communications they receive can feel like an overwhelming barrage.

Luckily, your bank’s efforts don’t have to fit that description. Social distancing doesn’t mean there needs to be a void between you and your customers; it means that it is even more important to interact and to do it well. Since online banking — mobile or otherwise — currently takes priority over face-to-face interactions, it is crucial your bank’s message engages readers, provides value, and sparks actionable insight.

Prioritize Engagement

What makes content engaging? The answer to that question isn’t always clear-cut, but there are a few universal truths that serve as a starting point.

First, your content must be relevant. Many people have had to cancel plans due to COVID restrictions, so it is essential to be sensitive to their situations. For instance, messaging about cash back on concert tickets or amusement park tickets isn’t going to engage customers right now. It may even upset them and cause negative emotions toward your organization.

You also don’t want your communication efforts to get lost in all the noise. To engage your customer, consider that the wording of your subject line and body headline are typically quick deciders for whether or not the message will be read. Your content should be clickable, but also substantive.

Other ways to promote engagement include addressing your customer personally and using language that speaks to them as a person. Any unnecessary wording or confusing jargon should be eliminated.

If you want to engage your audience, sometimes it means taking a step back and thinking like them. Would you want to read an entire email or newsletter from your bank that you didn’t feel pertained to you? Neither do they.

Provide Value

It’s important to remember that each touchpoint with your customer is a representation of your organization. When crafting messaging for your customers, a smart first step is to determine the objective you want to pursue. Is the content meant to inform, entertain, or prompt action?

By zeroing in on providing specific value to your customer, you can ensure that your content will portray your organization in a positive light. Customers don’t want their inbox flooded with irrelevant information that doesn’t serve a purpose.

Perceived value will differ between various customer segments. Some customers might benefit from information on retirement and in-home care plans, but that doesn’t mean you should send that to your full list of customers.

Take Action

So, after you know how to engage your customers and provide them with value, what’s next? The benefit of valuable content doesn’t end at hitting the send button. Trackable ROI reports can tell you open and click-through rates, while data on individual clicks can give you even greater insights.

Following up on analytics is just as important as gathering insights in the first place. Not only should you know what initially grabs the attention of your customers, but you also need to know how to keep it. By knowing what messaging is resonating with customers, you can better target them with more information that will be both enriching and engaging on an individual basis.

Delivering high quality messaging should always be a top priority for your organization, and the COVID-19 pandemic has made that fact even more apparent as digital banking becomes the new normal. Use this opportunity to better communicate with your customers and continue to be a trusted voice in a time of uncertainty.

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