By now, this offer should be familiar to everyone in our business–“Switch to Bank X and Get $300!”

Banks, particularly the larger players are pulling out the stops with offers of $300, $400, even $500 for moving. What are these banks looking for? Customer relationships–checking, savings and a loan relationship. Some of the offers are targeted at new checking customers and offer large bonuses for opening and funding a premium account. Others are going after relationships offering bonus money for various account types. All have activity and funding requirements, but know this–these offers work.

StratAgree recommends that regional and community banks do two things. First, they must understand the value of customer relationships to know how much is reasonable to spend to acquire them. Second, they need to ensure that their digital banking offerings (particularly mobile banking) are current and attractive.

Customer Value
Banks need to know which account types customers buy, what the average balances in those accounts are and the length of time customers keep these accounts open to begin to understand the value of a customer relationship. Many a marketer has been criticized for high cost per account acquired but few of the criticizers have solid evidence for why they believe it’s “too much.” Better marketing decisions are possible when you know the real value of a customer relationship

Digital Tech
The bigger banks are investing in state-of-the-art mobile banking platforms. Smaller players are beginning to lose share on this alone. Get current. Again, customer relationships are probably worth more than you think. Marketing isn’t the only investment required to attract and retain them.

Here’s a great piece that appeared at about 6 weeks ago. Although it’s a similar story, we don’t see this as a new trend–it’s always been good business. It’s just that some players have better information to guide their strategy.  Chase has been using this tactic for many years with great effect. They know what a customer is worth. Do you?



To learn more about Customer Lifetime Value, contact Alpine Jennings at 716-713-4266 or

Robert Dorn at 404-987-2419.