credit card services

Part 2 of 7: Industry Intelligence Puts Card Services in Charge

Your commercial and small business bankers love Vertical IQ for call preparation, but the value of Industry Intelligence reaches far beyond these groups. In this seven-part blog series, we will discuss how Industry Intelligence can be utilized by lines of business across your bank enterprise.

>> Related:
Part 1 of 7: Industry Intelligence Offers a Wealth of Treasury Management Insight

credit card servicesWhen your commercial and small business bankers are preparing for a call, Industry Intelligence is their fast-pass to save time while getting them up to speed on their client or prospect. But Industry Intelligence also offers value across the entire bank enterprise. Your commercial and business card services team, for example, may find that Industry Intelligence is the ace they need in their pocket.

Better questions, better solutions

A major component of the card services team’s job is to listen, which means getting the client or prospect talking. The card team needs to understand a client’s spending habits, their short-term credit needs, and how these things can impact cash flow. Industry Intelligence gives card services valuable insights based on the typical spending habits for an industry, and even offers specific questions to ask to get that conversation started.

For instance, looking at the “Banking Solutions” chapter of the Industry Profile for machine shops, we learn that one of their common challenges is efficiently paying suppliers and managing expenses to optimize cash flow and minimize fraud. Some questions a card services officer might ask around this issue are:

  • How do you pay suppliers as late as possible to take advantage of discounts and conserve cash?
  • What is your process for approving purchases of and paying for materials, supplies, inventory, and T&E expenses?
  • How do you protect your firm against fraudulent or inappropriate purchases?

These questions are sure to get a machine shop owner talking, which allows the card services team to listen and gather valuable insights into the business. Based on the business owner’s answers, the card team might propose products such as purchasing cards and/or commercial credit cards, as well as services like online bill payment and wire transfers.

“What is my competition doing?”

There isn’t a business owner out there who doesn’t want to know what their competitors are doing to address common industry challenges or how the business can take advantage of emerging trends. This is why it also can be helpful to the card services team to explore which bank products are most used by companies within a particular niche.

This piece of Industry Intelligence, found under the “Bank Product Usage” chapter of the Industry Profile, provides insights into which solutions others within an industry are using to manage their financial picture.

Again, looking at the Industry Profile for machine shops, we can see that 57 percent are using a business credit card issued in their company’s name. Additionally, 52 percent have a business debit card or business check card. This is not only helpful information for the banker to know, it is also useful to share with a prospective card services client — reconnaissance on their competitive landscape, which might entice them to pursue a similar solution.

Other tidbits of interest to a business owner

There is additional Industry Intelligence that a business owner would be happy to learn about their niche, which card services teams can capitalize on during client conversations, presentations, and follow-ups.

  • The “Working Capital” chapter of each Industry Profile has a section dedicated to Cash Management Challenges. This is a highly relevant subject when it comes to cash flow conversations and highlights potential cash flow issues commonly faced by a particular industry.
  • The “Financial Benchmarks” chapter of the Industry Profile includes financial statistics and even provides insights into expenditures by category. This can assist with the selection of the best card product, as well as spending limits.
  • “Industry News” and current events are helpful to business development as well as client retention — something every line of business within your bank should be focusing on!

An Industry Intelligence tool with no limits

Industry Intelligence provides your commercial and business card services teams with helpful insights into their client’s or prospect’s industry, enabling them to ask better questions, initiating more focused conversations to delve into the business owner’s unique needs. This knowledge allows your bankers to match challenge to solution, bringing new card services business into the bank and retaining existing card customers with valuable advice to help their business thrive.

Want to learn more about how your commercial and business card services teams and other lines of business across your bank enterprise can use Vertical IQ’s Industry Intelligence to save time and win more deals? Contact Vertical IQ today for a free demo!


Image credit: Markus Winkler via Unsplash

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customer success team; fist bump

Put Two "I"s in Your Customer Success Team: Industry Intelligence

customer success team; fist bumpYour company’s customer success team is all about ensuring satisfaction after the sale. A major component to this is, of course, effective onboarding. But as with the sales process, today’s customers aren’t going to be content with a cookie-cutter approach to adoption and ongoing training. They are expecting a more tailored experience that addresses their unique needs. Fail to achieve their high standards, and the Adoption and Loyalty Phases of the buyer’s journey can be jeopardized, not to mention the Advocacy Phase.

So as a customer success professional, what can you do to ensure you’re meeting your clients’ expectations during these crucial later stages of the sales cycle? Especially if you work with clients in multiple industries, how can you create that personalized experience they are clamoring for?

Effective use of Industry Intelligence makes it simple. Let’s take a look at some specific tactics that customer success teams can use to create that “wow” experience.

>> Related: See Vertical IQ in action all along your buyer’s journey

Adoption Phase

By the time clients have reached the Adoption Phase of the buyer’s journey, a lot has already transpired. They became aware of your brand, considered their various buying options, and ultimately decided your company offered the best solution to their need.

But bear in mind: The people who will be implementing your product or service weren’t necessarily at the table when that choice was made. This is why it is so important to get buy-in from downstream employees during the Adoption Phase of the buyer’s journey.

To get the extended team on board, education is crucial, and personalization will make your message resonate even more. Fortunately, this is the customer success team’s forte! Create education pieces tailored to the client’s industry using Industry Intelligence to connect the dots between their needs and your solution.

The customer success team can further demonstrate the reasons the decision makers selected your company and solution and the strategic value you bring to the table by sharing Industry Intelligence. Data and insights like the Industry Profile, Quarterly Updates, and Big Picture Video, as well as industry news articles, accelerate this process and further promote adoption across the business for even better results and ROI.

Loyalty Phase

During the Loyalty Phase of the buyer’s journey, your focus should be on remaining top-of-mind and adding continual value after the sale. This truly should be an ongoing effort for your customer success team as they are charged with doing everything they can to ensure the client steers clear of avoidable pitfalls and can overcome any obstacles they may encounter.

Industry Intelligence helps you guide the new client and their team in the right direction (and even identify and capture upsell opportunities). Solidify this burgeoning relationship by sharing industry-specific Quarterly Updates, current news articles, Local Economy reports, individual Industry Profile chapters, Financial Benchmarks, and more.

By passing along this value-added Industry Intelligence to your clients and providing them with tips on how to use the insights, your customer success team helps the client make informed decisions using the most current data and details, compiled by experts, instead of relying on guesses or assumptions. The result will be an exceptional customer experience that solidifies the client’s loyalty to your product and brand.

Advocacy Phase

The Advocacy Phase of the buyer’s journey is all about creating happy, long-term customers who will readily endorse your brand and your solutions. When your customer success team uses Industry Intelligence to continually prove your company to be a high-value partner, your customers will be eager to recommend you and share their positive experience with others.

To stay top-of-mind and continuously prove your value, customer success teams should reach out regularly with relevant industry tidbits, as well as more in-depth details from Industry Profiles and Quarterly Updates. Share Local Economy data, which reveals the dynamics at play in specific markets and arms your client with the insights needed to take full advantage of new opportunities.

Leveraging Industry Intelligence on an ongoing basis during the Advocacy stage positions your company as a trusted advisor. By adding this value, your customer success team is the conduit through which clients become eager to expand their own relationship with you, as well as advocate on your behalf to their friends and colleagues.

>> Free eBook: Deliver Value at Every Turn: Industry Intelligence Across the Buyer’s Journey

Put the “success” in customer success team

We hear from some Vertical IQ customers who tell us they have users who still only think about Industry Intelligence from a prospecting perspective. While there’s no doubt that Industry Intelligence is absolutely invaluable during your client team’s prospecting efforts, it is in fact designed to support the entire life of a business relationship: from the Awareness Phase all the way through to the Advocacy Phase.

When your customer success team incorporates Industry Intelligence into the educational efforts during the Adoption Phase of the buyer’s journey, it sets the stage for a more successful implementation. It also sets your company up to wow the client and build allegiance during the Loyalty Phase and eventually convert them into raving fans during the Advocacy Phase.

As with any change, this new way of thinking about your customer success strategy and tactics may take a little getting used to, but the end result of your efforts will be worth it when your clients are not only willing but eager to promote your brand to others.

Want to learn more about how your customer success team can effectively incorporate Industry Intelligence into the buyer’s journey? Contact us today for a free demo!

Image credit:  Markus Spiske via Unsplash

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Now More Than Ever, Industry Intelligence Is A “Must Have”

Today, it is more critical than ever to have access to Industry Intelligence so that you can advise clients and add value. Why?

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