How To Improve Cross-Selling in Banks

There’s been a popular question around for decades: How to improve cross-selling in banks? 

Yes, some people don’t like to use the word “cross-sells” after what happened with a certain large bank that got into some trouble. But the reality is that bookkeeping is bookkeeping, and revenue per day producing items are sales, and cross-sells is not a dirty word. It’s just a measure of trust. And it is one of the most enlightened elements that your people can bring to your customers and your community when done correctly

Unfortunately, most banks get it all wrong 

They try crazy things like bringing in sales training companies that teach them the bada bing, bada boom, feel felt found, features, benefits, and all that stuff that was popular back in the 80s. That didn’t work back then and really works quite terribly right now, if at all. 

So that bank customer cross-sells program isn’t working, so they basically allow for an incentive program and think, “Oh, the results follow the money.” I’ve heard so many bank CEOs say that, and then I see them lose their independence a couple of years later. In fact, the research and organizational development studies are clear.

Intrinsic or extrinsic rewards?

It’s not the extrinsic rewards like money that create a change in results. It’s the intrinsic reward of feeling I’m making a difference with other people. And that’s why some smarmy approach to cross-sells just doesn’t work in community banking. 

Instead, it needs to be a system that allows for that customer to be fully understood. And then it allows the banker to make the appropriate recommendations all in one sitting—never feeling like sales, and always in a way that’s designed to help the customer.

If your people don’t say at the end of it, “Gosh, I feel so much better about myself. I feel like I’m really helping people,” I promise you that you’re doing it wrong. 

This is a year where we can’t afford to have our customers in somebody else’s pocket. As soon as they are in a relationship with any other financial institution, trust me, those financial institutions are getting savvy and are desperate to come after your best customers. 

An absolute necessity in 2022

So having the entire relationship of every one of your best customers is no longer a “nice to have” in 2022. It will be an absolute necessity. So let’s get about it and get this done. How about starting your cross-sales process immediately but doing it right. I’d love to talk to you about how to get that done because there’s a right way and a wrong way to improve cross-selling in banks. And whether we work with each other or not, I would love to spare you the pain that I’ve heard thousands of bank executive teams go through.

Feel free to give me a call.

– Roxanne Emmerich

Please watch the video above and share it with your exec team and board.

Want to find out more about how your bank can grow its bank customer cross-sells and get to top-of-peer performance and stay there? Get your copy of Breakthrough Banking Blueprint here

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