Bank Rewards Programs, Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty

Elizabeth Rowe, Group Director, Banking Advisory Services

While banks are efficiency and profit maximers, current retail reward programs and overdraft fees policies are jeopardizing the long-term health of retail customer satisfaction and loyalty. By retaining 2-5 business day check clearing schedules and largest-first check payment policies, banks have seen their insufficient check fee income increase to $17.5 billion. However, that income, which represents only 6% of the total non-interest income for the US Banking Industry, has generated out-sized customer discontent and defections and we predict, that left unaddressed, will prompt both legislative and judicial scrutiny and regulation. 

Banks have given too much responsibility to a $34 fee. Retail banks must refocus by embracing new social networking technologies and real-time virtual customer interactions to sell bank products and services. Banks must reassume their trusted advisor mantle and imbue sales with human interactions and indeed, humanity. We will discuss how fair customer engagement and non-punitive fee schedules ultimately will generate new fees and income without customer pushback or defection. While this regeneration of goodwill by retail bankers will take significant time, this teleconference will focus on discussing marketing strategies and new product features that will expedite that process.