Future Branches: Your Branch as a Growth Center

In their presentation “Open, Close or Renovate,” Adrenaline’s Sean Keathley and Gina Bleedorn talk about taking the branch from liability to opportunity using the power of place

Thursday, July 30, 2020 – On Monday and Tuesday, July 20-21, Future Branches saw record attendance as they moved the annual conference addressing the branch channel online in their first-ever virtual event of the COVID era. Taking on banking’s big challenge, this year’s theme had participants Facing the Future Head-On as speakers addressed the role of the branch in our new pandemic reality. Spotlight speakers on Tuesday, July 21, Adrenaline’s president and CEO Sean Keathley and Gina Bleedorn took up the mantle of demystifying how to make informed decisions about the branch network.

In Open, Close, or Renovate: Using Analytics to Figure Out the Size and Shape of Your WHOLE Network, Sean and Gina laid out a strategic process to help attendees wrap their arms around thinking about their branch network, moving from a liability to an opportunity. Including powerful best practices and market data and insights, the session was focused on presenting real-world challenges in an approachable, digestible way. Especially in light of a global pandemic, there is now an unprecedented urgency to address branch network cost and its changing purpose.

Sean describes the way to think about the branch, saying, “Even before the pandemic, banks were grappling with what to do with their branches. Realistically, branches represent a brand beacon and important market presence, for consultation and community. But every market doesn’t need a full-service branch to reap the benefits of being there.” What used to be a black-and-white, open-or-close mentality must pivot to a more nuanced understanding of the branch banking channel. Sean says, “Data and analytics help make those decisions, but the biggest shift is really in mindset.”

Gina knows that shuttering branches in the network will ultimately result in a boomerang effect. She says, “Closing branches says you’re retracting and retreating at the very moment you should be communicating the exact opposite. You can’t close your way to profitability.” If banks are optimizing their networks, cutting costs is only half of the equation. Gina says, “You want to communicate to communities that you’re investing in them, not running out of them. We say that you need to flip the way you think about branches, looking at them as a growth center, not a cost center.”

To see a replay of the Future Branches Facing the Future virtual conference, register for a free all-access pass to live sessions and an unlimited full conference replay. For more branch insights on the power of your branch networks, read our roundup Branch Banking and the Power of Place and see all of the relevant stats and information on branch banking on Believe in Banking.

To speak with one of Adrenaline’s branch experts about developing an optimization plan for your network, contact us at info@adrenalinex.com.

Adrenaline is an experience design agency that creates and implements end-to-end branded experiences through creative and environmental design. We enhance our clients’ customer experiences across digital and physical channels, from their branding and advertising to design and technology in their spaces. After transforming an organization’s brand, Adrenaline extends it across all touchpoints — from employees to the market to in-store environments. And, we focus on serving industries that sell human experiences including financial, healthcare, sports and entertainment.

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