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Year-End Banking Trends Reshaping Partnership Marketing

Typically, industry experts don’t initiate discussions about the latest trends until the current year is nearing its end. However, the banking sector is experiencing some turbulent times, which has led to the emergence of some important trends every financial and marketing industry professional needs to know about.

With that in mind, here’s a look at a few key year-end banking trends that will shape the partnership marketing industry over the back half of 2023.


Why the Shift?

Several major bank failures rocked the financial industry in the early part of the year. While experts suggest that these incidents were unique and isolated, investors and many customer segments are nonetheless limiting their dealings with banks and credit unions.

In the wake of these failures, institutions both big and small are clamoring to win key customer segments. Many banks are also contending with shrunken margins, increased competition, and a temporarily decreased customer pool.

Cumulatively, these factors have forced banks and credit unions across the country to revamp their marketing strategies.

As is often the case, negative market conditions have led to the development of some intriguing — and potentially impactful — trends. To stay competitive and maintain strong margins, marketing leaders must be steadfast, agile, and, above all, creative.


3 Trends to Watch

Thus far, three distinct trends have emerged in the second half of 2023. Here’s a brief overview:


1. Aggressive M&A Strategies

When the economy is thriving, merger and acquisition transactions have served as a powerful growth accelerator for businesses.

In the current climate, M&A deals not only support long-term growth but also provide large banks with a means of capturing new markets. For smaller institutions, merging with or selling to a larger entity provides sustainability, resilience, and insulation against volatile market conditions.

Eight M&A bank deals were announced in June alone. While this is a positive sign for the banking sector, the year-to-date totals for 2023 remain incredibly low compared to previous years. By this time last year, nearly double (79, to be exact) the number of M&A deals had been announced.

However, it’s possible for banks (regardless of their size) to make compelling acquisitions without unduly encroaching upon their profit margins. The use of specialized affiliate marketing messaging and tools has revolutionized the acquisition landscape, extending its reach to banks, even those with modest financial resources.


2. Widespread Adoption of Generative AI (GenAI)

From a marketing perspective, banks of all sizes are striving to do less with more and maximize their return on investment. To achieve this, many institutions are turning to generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) tools like ChatGPT.

While ChatGPT is certainly one of the most talked-about AI-powered tools on the market, it’s by no means the only one.

Leading partnership marketing firms like Acceleration Partners are integrating AI technologies into existing platforms. For instance, APVision, our affiliate and partnership marketing optimization solution, is now embedded with GenAI technologies.

By taking advantage of APVision, ChatGPT, and other GenAI solutions, banking professionals can breathe new life into their affiliate, partnership, and digital marketing strategies.


3. A Focus on Gen Z

If the core market of customers is scarce, what’s the solution for banks looking to acquire new clients and bolster revenue? The answer is relatively simple: target the newest emerging market, Gen Z.

Generation Z includes anyone born in or after 1997 and is one of the fastest-growing segments of prospective customers. In total, about 70 million Americans fall into this category, roughly a third of whom are now entering adulthood. This means that Gen Z is literally too big to ignore.

Institutions of all sizes must prioritize Gen Z in future marketing efforts. Some are already by modernizing their advertising strategies and adopting partnership marketing concepts like influencer and affiliate marketing.

If you need to do the same but aren’t sure where to begin, it all starts with choosing the right partnership marketing agency.


Capitalize on These Banking Trends with Acceleration Partners

The right affiliate marketing messaging and tools can drive acquisitions for your institution without eroding your profit margins. Thanks to teams like Acceleration Partners, robust partnership marketing tools and resources are available to institutions of all sizes, including those with smaller war chests.

With AP in your corner, you can form meaningful connections with segments that are most likely to open new accounts, like Gen Zers, build trust, and showcase your top-performing financial products.


Connect with Acceleration Partners and learn how partnership marketing fits into your growth strategy.