Take the SMART Branch Test and Diagnose Your Pain Points

Ahhh, freak out!

Following our post about the new banking jargon, we’re now offering financial industry CEO’s the 10-Question SMART Branch Test to diagnose your pain points!

Financial institution CEO’s shouldn’t fear change; banks and credit unions (and their customers) are benefiting from the exciting innovations currently taking place in the industry. All the developments, from ITM machines to banking apps, are part of a concerted effort to make life easier for us. Customers like easy. Never forget this.

Convenience and transparency are the keys to branch banking success.

24/7 lobbies are what the people want.

By taking this quiz, financial industry CEO’s can determine how far along the road they are towards transforming their brand into a SMARTER one.

Realizing your dream of harnessing the latest personal and digital interactive services and marketing methodologies is vital if your brand is to stay competitive.

We’ve made it as easy and obvious as possible. But not insultingly so. Well, maybe a little…we’ll start easy and work our way toward the, err, even easier questions as we go. We hope you’ll learn at least ONE NEW THING from this simple exercise. An answer key is provided at the end.

Sumerians invented the first "tablet" for mobile banking.

Hmmm, must be one of the older mobile banking applications……

1. A “tablet” is…

a) A piece of baked clay bearing ancient Sumerian cuneiform script.

b) A mobile computer with a touchscreen display.

c) Something you take when you feel unwell.

d) A Scottish sweet made of butter, condensed milk and sugar.

Tower of Babel, ancient banking system.

That’s right; we’re gonna milk this Babylonian theme for all it’s worth.

2. A “dialog tower” is…

a) A radio mast.

b) Another word for an air-traffic control tower.

c) A free-standing pod that allows greater interaction between branch staff and customers.

d) The Tower of Babel, with its confusion of many languages.

Hi-tech lifestyle zone in a bank branch.

These computer chips were made for, err, eating?

3. An in-branch “hi-tech lifestyle zone” would feature…

a) Computerized treadmills.

b) Computer tablets and laptops, and possibly touch-screen interactive machines.

c) A snazzy cappuccino maker.

d) Vitamin water and energy bars.

Mobile banking fail.

Keep your people CONNECTED at all costs.

4. How would you describe your online banking strategy?

a) “It will happen someday.”

b) “In the planning stage.”

c) “We’ve been working on an app since 2011.”

d) “Our banking apps have made life much easier for our customers.”

Millennials choose their bank based on convenient branch location.

They’re just *so* freakin’ cool, aren’t they?!?

5. On what basis do millennials choose their bank or credit union?

a) Whichever branch has the most bells and whistles.

b) The one with the coolest phone apps.

c) The branch most convenient to their work or home.

d) The one that can afford a Super Bowl ad.

Banks need social media accounts to be relevant.

Millennials spend 18 hours a day on social media.

6. Social Media is an effective tool for…

a) Reaching existing and potential customers with new offers and services.

b) Dealing with customer issues and other negative feedback.

c) Creating a buzz around the brand which followers will share.

d) All of the above.

New Alliance Bank, Hartford, CT.

Tashes were huge back in Mark Twain’s day. We designed a Hartford bank to reflect this fact.

7. Optimal branch size is…

a) 4,500 Sq. Ft.

b) 900 Sq. Ft.

c) 2,800 Sq. Ft.

d) There is no optimal branch size, branches must be custom designed for each situation.

Online banking customers are more loyal and affluent.

Online banking makes your life easier and comes in a lovely shade of purple.

8. Online banking correlates closely with…

a) Customer loyalty.

b) Customer satisfaction and convenience.

c) Customer affluence.

d) All of the above.

Virgin bank cafe lounge.

A sleek modern sociable banking experience.

9. The role of financial branch staff is moving towards…

a) A more retail-style personalized “concierge” experience.

b) Cross-trained employees fluent in all financial services.

c) Being more responsible for building relationships with customers.

d) All of the above.

75% of people prefer to open a new bank account in a physical branch.

There’s no substitute for face-to-face human contact when it comes to financial business matters.

10. The percentage of consumers who prefer to open new accounts in a physical branch is…

a) 18%

b) 30%

c) 75%

d) 4%

Answer Key:

1. b

2. c

3. b

4. d

5. c

6. d

7. d

8. d

9. d

10. c

Financial industry CEO's are learning how banking is changing.

How did you fare in our online CEO “smart banking” quiz?

Marks out of ten:

< 3 = You’re visiting us through a time-portal from Ancient Babylon.

3 – 5 = Seek professional help.

6 – 8 = You’re ready to embrace the new banking lingo.

9 – 10 = Sign up here for the quarterly Ground Up newsletter – you’re a pro!

* Lead photo in this piece is by Alex Proimos.

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Ancient Babylonian banking.

Ancient Babylon, where banking was already millennia old. Gorgeous, wasn’t it?