Holy Vible

“Church Discipline: Its Effect Upon Fellowship of Saints”

As we “edify in love” (Eph. 4:16), or “teach and admonish” in singing, or study, pray, and sacrifice together; we are assisting one another to be faithful to the Lord. We have need of one another (1 Cor. 12:14-f), and the more we recognize and supply that need, the closer will be our fellowship, the more effective our day by day “discipline by example.” Our spiritual brothers must become our peers, whose approval or disapproval mean the most to us. This is the sort of communion that gives meaning to the various scriptures on corrective discipline, and without which they lose their effectiveness. Disfellowship HAS meaning only to the extent that fellowship HAD meaning to us. Would you rather your social companions go to hell

4 Principles for Successfully Selling Insurance in the Branch

Will new regulation lead to the demise of “totally free checking?”  Most executives think so. As banks focus on re-pricing their portfolio of checking products, many will miss the opportunity to generate non-traditional fee income.  In particular, bancassurance provides a unique opportunity to capitalize on customer risk adversity while increasing fee-based product sales in the branch. Retail banks have struggled for years to sell insurance, failing to gain customer share of mind and equip staff to recognize opportunities.  In partnership with the Insurance Advisory Board, the Council has identified four common principles for successfully selling insurance in the branch: Get the timing right:  The window of time in which customers are open to purchasing insurance is brief, so link insurance cross-sales to a primary asset

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EMERGING ISSUES
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Why Online Sales Are Not Meeting Expectations

In 2007, The Council surveyed members on “what channels will best serve customers for purchasing products end-to-end?” for both 2007 (“today”, then) and in 5 years time (2012). Responses were unambiguous: a sharp decline in branch sales – from well over 80%, to just over 40% – and a sharp incline in on-line sales, from just under 10% to just short of 50%. Here we are in 2012 and it is clear these projections were wildly optimistic. But today the stakes are higher: banks that do not enable non-branch sales will miss crucial opportunities for cost reductions and brand differentiation. The question is – why have on-line sales failed to realize their potential? Banks continue to hope for a “return to normal” – Confronted with uncertainty, many institutions have fallen back on what they know – the branch, where they have most tried and tested experience selling – rather than try to build something new. Economic austerities inclined toward a less aggressive “run-the-bank” versus “change-the-bank” split, notwithstanding the potential cost savings associated with the latter. As sales growth flattened, increasing productivity in the branch appears a faster path to growth than improving the online sales experience. The branch is viewed as the home of customer relationships– Many senior executives remain unconvinced they can effectively manage relationships through non branch channels. Indeed, the Council’s data does suggest

Finance Updates
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Using Social Media to Know Your Customers Better

Our data shows that customers that prefer to use technology for banking purposes are more likely to be younger and active on social media. They are less likely to visit a bank branch on a regular basis. One challenge many banks are facing is how to connect with these tech users and engage them outside of the branch. Bancolombia approaches this challenge through its use of social media to learn about the financial goals of its remote-channel customers.  In an effort to help customers feel more at ease with borrowing, Bancolombia devised a Facebook campaign encouraging consumers to share their dreams as they pertain to credit. The bank responded through a series of video messages on their YouTube channel unpacking the non-financial considerations required to make these dreams come true. Consumers were then invited to vote for their favorite dream, with the top 3 dreams receiving a final contribution. All other contributors were able to click through on embedded service links to discuss suitable credit products. Use this case to learn how to: Effectively demonstrate the human-side of the brand Better understand consumers needs and wants Drive sales leads to your established sales channels Access the Bancolombia case study here

EMERGING ISSUES
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What Does the Branch Do in a Multichannel World?

Traditional transactions are on the decline for banks around the world–even though for most, the overall volume of transactions is increasing. As the role of the branch changes from the centerpiece of distribution strategies to a component part, what can banks predict about its future form and purpose? For the customer: Customer relationships are moving from a “convenience model” to an “activity-driven model.” Convenience required that banks pursue branch density, knowing that customers make decisions about their relationships primarily based on proximity to the branch. The new model of customer relationships will be structured around engaging with customers in their day to day lives, virtually—by timely, context-driven, product offers, refined money management tools and services, and interactive correspondence with “the branch” through virtual channels. Our recent work on product and service innovation looked at the proliferation of banking “activities” driven by technology. Traffic and sales: The role of the branch itself for customers will become increasingly specified as it moves from being the central channel to one piece of the channel array. Most of our members report declining branch transactions, but increasing transactions overall. The transactions that will continue to be drawn to the branch will be new account sales, complex product sales, like mortgages, and some types of problem resolution. Meanwhile, we expect cross-selling to be driven by non-branch channels. See our recent work on customer channel preferences to understand

PEER VIEWS
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A Return of Revenue Growth in the Next 12 Months?

Our quarterly report on business conditions and expectations in Financial Services provides a network-enabled, 12-month outlook on key drivers of economic performance in financial services. Most in the industry expect continued mixed trends, as modest revenue growth returns but cost pressures increase and capital expenditures decline. Financial service (FS) executives’ sentiment: Executive sentiment regarding revenues in the coming year improved compared to last quarter, while expectations regarding cost pressures in the next 12 months remained similar. Overall executives expect relatively better operating margins in 2012. Revenue growth and cost pressures: Sixty-three percent of executives expect their company’s revenue to increase in the next 12 months but only somewhat. Further 67% of executives expect cost pressures to increase, with nearly one-third indicating higher or much higher cost pressures. Growth indicators: More than one-half of the executives expect an increase in sales to both new and existing customers. Among executives, 46% expect fl at R&D investments and 40% expect higher M&A deals in the next 12 months. Further 44% of executives expect lower discretionary IT capex. More than one-third, however, expect an increase in capex investment, and one-third expect a decline during the same period.

EMERGING ISSUES
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How Quickly Will Branch Traffic Decline?

The branch has begun its predicted slide from prominence as the center of the bank/customer relationship. The number of branches, the number of tellers, and the number of teller transactions will continue to decrease through 2015. This is not necessarily bad news as banks have attempted to migrate simple transactions to alternate channels for decades, beginning with the ATM in the 1980s. It does, however, present a challenge to banks to determine the best use of branches going forward. The rise in sales and service transactions will offset the teller transaction decline slightly and will comprise a larger percentage of total branch transactions. This shift requires staffing with a different skill set, emphasizing traditional platform-based customer service and selling skills over teller proficiencies such as balancing and fast processing. In contrast to the branch, ATM transactions will continue to rise, although only a little. This increase is primarily due to added deposits because of the deployment of image ATMs. Interestingly, this trend is also driving the decline in branch transactions with the net result that ATM transactions will almost achieve parity with the number of branch transactions by 2014. Understanding consumer usage of the financial institution’s delivery channels is a critical element in future investment decisions. TowerGroup and Corporate Executive Board have refined the methodology for calculating and forecasting transaction volumes using an approach that incorporates

EMERGING ISSUES
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Projecting Rapid Growth for Online and Mobile

While its growth has slowed as it has reached maturity, the functions available through online banking continue to increase, thus driving volumes upward. Although online sales remain at only 1% of total volume, they account for the biggest change; new accounts opened are expected to double between 2010 and 2015. Service and payments volumes through the online channel will continue to grow, albeit holding a steady pace at 86% and 13% of total transactions, respectively. Mobile banking, just introduced to the mass market starting in 2009, is beginning to revolutionize how customers interact with their banks. Consumers’ ability to check balances from wherever they are is the driving force behind the escalating growth in mobile banking, which has an expected CAGR of 28% through 2015.  The comfort with using smartphones for financial purposes will set the stage for widespread use of mobile payments once FSIs and retailers settle on mobile payments standards. The growth in online and mobile banking is in direct contrast to branch volumes as published in Channel Transaction Volumes: Branch and ATM. Branch volumes along with the number of branches and tellers are steadily decreasing as consumers make the move from full-service to self-service. Online and mobile banking are picking up that activity, and adding even more, as consumers access these channels more often for basic balance inquiries, now something rarely done in the

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