The Role ATMs Play in Branch Automation Transformation
Updated: May 19
“Go where the customers are.” It’s simple business advice, but it’s still effective. And it absolutely applies to financial institutions.
But banks and credit unions can’t be everywhere at once. Consequently, ATMs act as proxy locations—service delivery channels placed for convenient customer access. When there are no branches around, ATMs become primary points of banking.
If you “go where the customers are” with ATMs, then consider what you want those ATMs to do…
Branch Automation Opportunities with ATMs
Kids learn to use smartphones before they even get to kindergarten. Students graduate high school and can’t read analog clocks. People prefer electronic payments to checks.
The fact is that digital convenience is increasingly important—and increasingly available. ATMs sit at a crossroads as a primary service touchpoint. As they continue to build in more features, they’ll introduce new opportunities…
Or, if they’re ignored, they could go the way of the fax machine.
Here are a few ways that ATMs can contribute to branch automation.
1. Brand Reinforcement
Your bank or credit union’s ATMs represent your brand. Their appearance should be clean, modern, and consistent with your overall image. This shows consumers that your institution values the service experience they provide.
Your ATM screen graphics and messaging display your brand look, but that’s not all. They can also be leveraged as marketing channels, and increased functionality (such as prepaid services) adds additional value for your customers.
2. Better Marketing
Newer ATM technologies allow financial institutions to market their brand, products, and services on machines. With downloadable images and messages, banks and credit unions can market remotely through their ATMs several ways:
· By individual location
· Per customer data
Leveraging user information, input, and account data, you can customize your messaging to fit. Imagine marketing a credit card to one user, a mortgage to another, and a CD to a third—all based on consumer data or ATM location.
Such customization improves the overall customer experience at your institution.
3. Cross-Sell Opportunities
Better marketing also means better cross-selling opportunities. ATMs offer strong one-to-one target marketing messages.
Moreover, ATMs can also send these messages to users who don’t have an account at the financial institution. Getting your marketing team in front of new leads is a major win.
How These Strategies Aid Automation Transformation
One of the emerging keys to customer satisfaction and loyalty is digital convenience. The easier you make your transactions, the more people will appreciate you.
ATMs offer the convenience of in-branch banking in high-traffic locations. And, they must meet increasingly high user expectations for ease of use, value, and brand alignment. So, keeping ATMs part of your institution’s branch automation goals ensures continued customer-facing convenience and value. It also expands your marketing reach and efficacy for a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing channels.
Ultimately, prioritizing ATMs as a critical customer service touchpoint is key to long-term customer satisfaction.