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James Robert Lay: 

All positive human relationships are founded on one key element. And that key element is not trust. Nope. All positive human relationships are founded on respect. You see, without respect, there can be no trust and without trust, there can be no love or put another way. Without trust. There can be no commitment. So what does this mean for your financial brand? When your marketing team doesn't feel like they have the respect of senior leaders, or when your marketing team doesn't feel like they have the respect of key business line leaders? And what exactly can a financial brand marketing team do to bridge the respect gap? The so many feel right now. Well, let's find out together on today's episode of the banking on digital growth Podcast.

 

Greetings and Hello, my name is James Robert Lay, and I'd like to welcome you to another episode of the banking on digital growth podcast. Today's episode is part of the real solution series. And joining me for today's conversation is Martha Bartlett Piland. Martha is the founder and CEO of Banktastic. And together, we're going to talk through how to transform a real obstacle that is impacting so many financial brand marketing teams right now into a real growth opportunity. Welcome to the show, Martha, it is always good to share time with you.

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

Thank you, James. Robert, I'm glad to be here. Absolutely.

 

James Robert Lay: 

And before we get into solving a real solution together for a real problem that you're seeing, from your point of view, what is positive right now in your world personally, professionally, it's your pick to get started.

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

What's positive is I have been working on and achieving, saying no sometimes or saying Not yet. And by doing that, it's helping me create some space in both my personal life and my business life to focus where I need to, and not get spread too thin and not get stressed out about not doing a great job at everything I want to do.

 

James Robert Lay: 

You know, this is a theme that I'm seeing from a couple of other leaders. And we've talked about this on the podcast recently as well. What is driving that thinking for you going forward? What's the deeper meaning behind the meaning for you here.

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

The deeper meaning is trying to really achieve excellence in the things that I do, and that my company does. And so again, getting spread too thin, dilutes that dilutes your ability, or it becomes exhausting. And it's really hard to maintain energy and creativity when you're just worn out.

 

James Robert Lay: 

Yeah, focus on the few things that matter most, that will create the greatest value going forward. And, you know, I think a lot of times, it's easy. We want to add stuff. It's much harder to let go of the things that got us to where we're at, we're undergoing the same type of an experience here. And sometimes that can become the impediment, what do we have to let go of and speaking about impediments, thinking about roadblock, what's a roadblock right now that you're seeing from your lens that is holding financial brands back from leveling up their growth going forward into the future?

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

I see a lot of financial brands, also being struck with so many requests, so many priorities, so many hot to dues, some of their own making, of course, but then also from external forces, their colleagues or their boss or somebody else. And I think that it is overwhelming and exhausting to them to try and figure out how to manage all of that. And that doesn't matter whether they are in a large marketing department with a with a big team, or whether they're an individual marketer wearing all the hats. I see that in in many different size institutions.

 

James Robert Lay: 

That's a that's a fair assessment, common pattern that we see here as well. Even a common complaint that I would say is taking a very emotional toll back to your point, whether it's an individual, or if it's a team. Why is this an important point, to discuss here today? To break through this impediment and really transform transform an obstacle into an opportunity? What happens if we don't solve this problem?

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

If we don't solve this problem, we're just not effective and we burn out and And ultimately we don't bring the value to our customers, or our colleagues that we want to bring to them because there's just not enough of us to go around. Or there's not our best thinking.

 

James Robert Lay: 

You know, when when I am approached with this problem, practically speaking from someone who is experiencing it, they're sharing it, they're vocalizing it. First and foremost, it's just a point of affirmation, saying, Hey, thanks for bringing this up. Thanks for having the awareness. And thanks for having the courage to speak up and say something about it. Because to continuously live in a state of conflict, is going to result in some type of chaos. I was just having this conversation last week with a group out that we've been working with for the past seven years. And but let's roll this back. Because there are there are patterns here, rooted in people rooted in human behavior. So you've got the state of conflict. Where does it come from? It comes from, I say, it's a lack of clarity. It's a lack of clarity, we have to get really, really clear, not into what we're doing. But why we're doing what we're doing. Number one, but number two, being able to effectively communicate with others within the organization. Why is marketing doing what they're doing so diag give the diagnosis? Is this marketing as a marketing problem? internally?

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

I think sometimes marketing does have an internal marketing problem. That's well said. Something that I do see from some of my my bank marketing, friends, credit union marketing friends, they say is, you know, how do I prove my value? Or, or people don't understand what marketing is they just think we're the ones who set up events and bring cookies and punch. And that's unfortunate. And sometimes I think it's because marketing isn't taking the lead and saying, here's what we're doing and why here are the measurable objectives and the measurable, measurable benchmarks that we have, that we are working toward. And, you know, that's the language of the C suite. That's the language of the most strategic committees in the institution is, what are we doing and why? And how are we proving that return on our investment, and marketing, I think sometimes does not do a good enough job speaking that language to their peers.

 

James Robert Lay: 

I want to roll back on a point you mentioned of. And once again, it comes back to lack of clarity. When there's a lack of clarity that leads to confusion, when you're in a state of confusion constantly, that leads to chaos, that leads to frustration that leads to friction. Let's get back to the point of clarity into communicating or effectively communicating why marketing exist. Because it's a matter of perspective. The C suite sees marketing as events, cookies, crayons, etc. Marketing is saying no, we create all of this additional value. But we haven't been able to effectively communicate at this point. I like the idea of value and value creation. Let's come back to the point of events. So we go out to an event and what do we do, we go out and we we increase awareness, we generate demand, we drive leads, and they might be top of funnel, maybe even middle of the funnel leads for that matter. The question is, is what is the value of that lead worth? And so let's play a hypothetical game here. Martha, let's just say, and this comes from some of the market research that we've done, let's say the average lifetime value of a consumer account is $1,500. I'm gonna submit for today, I can either round up or round down, I'm gonna play the conservative role and say it's $1,000, just to make my math very easy. So I go out to an event. And let's say I get 150 contacts out of that event. Well, at you know, the average lifetime value of a new account holder is $1,000 150. New accounts. What's $150,000 of potential value that we've created from a single event? We didn't talk about the tactics. We didn't talk about what we did, but we're now talking in dollars and cents bottom line, to the C suite. How does that translate? Or how does that change the narrative? Because a lot of this is narrative, controlling the message. How does that change the communication here? Of effectively communicating value?

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

It does two things. Because first off, it gives it gives the C suite a big picture of what opportunity this generated, that marketing did. So it's this big picture of opportunity. But then it also gives marketing and C suite the chance to have a conversation about how do we fully Take advantage of this opportunity we just created. It's not just marketing, it might also be what's happening in a branch, what's happening in our digital branch, what's happening with operations and other people within the bank and the bank's business lines to help convert this opportunity into a real customer or member, absolute marketing at all. So that's a great way to just have that conversation about how else do we really take this investment to the optimum conclusion.

 

James Robert Lay: 

I like, it's the realization of it. It's like, I think of another organization that we have advised and I've coached over the years, they have optimized their digital experiences, they are now effectively proving that their marketing efforts are influencing 10s, if not hundreds of millions of dollars in value for loans and deposits. But then they sometimes they get a little frustrated, because they know that they're not the only ones responsible for seeing that all the way through the pipeline, to close into funding. And that is where the internal collaboration comes back into play, which really brings this conversation full circle, to close that knowledge gap, to increase the clarity of those in the C suite. It comes down to not just communication. But I also say education, to help reframe the role of marketing to begin with in the first place, that it's not just cookies, it's not just crayons, it's not just events, it is a strategic growth engine that can pay dividends. for years to come. It's almost like what is being created today in regards to value was based upon marketing work that was done six 912 plus months ago, the work that we're doing today, can create even more value 369 12 plus months going forward into the future. Thinking about this, what's something What's practically speaking something that because I know you work with marketing teams, what would your recommendation be, that someone who's watching or listening can do to bridge this knowledge gap to increase the value of marketing the perception of marketing? internally.

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

One way to do that would be to just think of themselves as a leader, whether they have that title or not, you know, leader is leadership is an activity, not just a title. So I believe marketers could be reaching across other departments, and creating some teams to talk about some of these things. I don't think you need to ask for permission to do that. You could have a coffee group or a lunch group and meet with people in other areas of the bank, so that you could work together on ideas that will help drive this forward. And when everybody has a little bit of ownership and this idea to share ideas and think about and talk about, is this a good idea? Can we put it into place? What are the things that would hold us back? What are the assets that we have that that would help us do that right now, if everybody's thinking in that way, then marketing as a leader is, is helping make those things happen in the bank, whether it's an official activity or not.

 

James Robert Lay: 

And your point is well taken, don't ask permission, just send the invite. And see who shows up. And the way that this is framed is we're wanting to co create value together. Cooperation means you work well together. Collaboration means you need cooperation, but collaboration means you're co creating value together across different sections across different business lines within the organization. And when you make this a repeatable experience, and let's say you do this every 90 days, over the course of a year, you can truly elevate and measure the progress of the perception of how other others within the organization perceive because now they're actually involved into all of these discussions, dialogues conversations. This is a really great breakthrough today, Martha with you, what's the best way for someone to reach out and say hello to continue the conversation that we've started, and maybe even getting more breakthroughs together?

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

Reach out to me on LinkedIn, I'm very active there all the time. Or visit our website and sign up for our financial marketing insights that comes out. I'd love to content converse with you either way.

 

James Robert Lay: 

It's always great having a conversation with you, Martha. Thanks again for joining me for another episode of the banking on digital growth podcast this like before has been a lot of fun today.

 

Martha Bartlett Piland: 

My pleasure.

 

James Robert Lay: 

As always, and until next time, be well do good. Be the light

 

Brief Summary of Episode #373

Marketing often finds itself in a tight spot—seen as the event organizers and handling creative materials, but not always recognized for the strategic thinkers they are. This underestimation shadows the true potential of marketing to drive substantial growth and innovation.

Martha Bartlett Piland, founder and president at Banktastic and a visionary in bank marketing, joins the show to dive into this pressing issue. Martha shares invaluable insights on transcending traditional roles and proactively bridging the knowledge gap within organizations.

The solution?

Embrace leadership, regardless of your title. Engage in cross-departmental collaborations, initiate value-creating conversations, and steer these interactions towards measurable objectives aligned with the company’s strategic goals.

This proactive approach doesn't just elevate the perception of marketing internally; it redefines it as an essential strategic partner capable of driving significant ROI and fostering a culture of innovation and collaboration.

 

Key Insights and Takeaways

  • Marketing's internal challenges and communication with peers (4:39)
  • Marketing value and collaboration with C-suite (7:36)
  • Bridging marketing knowledge gap and increasing value (11:51)