By Albert J. Vegter, AIA, President of Daniels and Zermack Associates, Inc.
It is time to begin thinking about how you are serving the clientele walking in the doors of your institution. We suggest you put on your coat, walk out the front door, put yourself in the frame of mind of a customer, and enter your building. Does what you see accurately represent what you, as management, want to be represented? Can you, as a customer, see what services and products are being offered? Are the financial services and products apparent?
Our architects and interior designers have been in many institutions that look like only cash-handling operations – there is no obvious indicator that lending is being done there.
Retailing is showing off the products and services you have. If your building is not doing this for you, maybe it is time to have a professional review done by experts with experience in designing spaces for financial institutions that are friendly and customer-oriented, and show the customers what services and products can be found in that location.
You do not need garish neon or paper happy-face signs hanging everywhere to have a retailing orientation. Tasteful decoration and a good clear arrangement of spaces can let your customers know the full range of your products and services. Multiple logos inside and outside the building can reinforce your brand image. Three-dimensional letters can identify departments and services, providing information about your offerings as well as providing direction to those who are seeking them.
Marketing messages can be integrated into the décor. Permanently mounted poster frames provide an organized way to present changing marketing messages. Large-format computer printers allow frequent changes to keep your messages fresh – and your own staff can create the posters, if someone has the graphic talents. Colorful banners can be integrated into your interior. Back-lighted display panels draw even more attention to your marketing messages.
It definitely improves conditions if you have a professionally created image package with logos, a well-defined graphic look, and the discipline to enforce the way the logo and image materials are utilized. The architects and interior designers can take the color palette of the graphic designs and use it in the colors of flooring, paint and wall coverings, and fabrics.
Our recent projects have included such special items as kiosks for computers providing customer access to accounts and loan information, and to train for internet banking. Greeter stations can provide a point of contact and a check-in spot for services. They can function as new-account and transaction stations when traffic is light.
Custom-designed coffee areas for hospitality to customers, and even popcorn dispensers, have been included. We have incorporated video news services with product promotions into lobbies and waiting areas. We have planned customer waiting areas as financial centers with television sets showing the financial news channel and periodical and display racks to promote investment products being offered. In one lobby, we provided a “projection wall” and provisions for a digital video projector to show pictures of local events, tying the institution into the local community activities.
To increase our abilities to provide an up-to-date retail environments for our clients’ offices, Daniels and Zermack has entered into an agreement with inLighten, Inc., allowing us to purchase for our clients, at a discount, inLighten’s Video Merchandising systems.
This special retail enhancement for your lobbies and waiting areas is a silent video presentation combining VideoNewsLine and VideoPosters, and includes the possibility of VideoMotion.
VideoNewsLine is a continuously running headline news program shown on television sets positioned in your facility where customers spend time. As a stream of world and national news, sports, weather, business, and lifestyle features are presented, one or more of your product promotions, called VideoPosters, appears within each minute of the show. VideoNewsLine captures dramatically high readership by providing something of immediate value and benefit to the customer – not just a sales pitch.
VideoNewsLine converts the time a customer spends at a financial facility into a value-added part of your service. VideoPosters are the comprehensive replacement for paper posters, back-lit transparencies, and other printed signage; they are superior in both graphic power and visual attraction.
How the television monitors are placed and installed is up to the individual financial institution and its architects and interior designers. The direct marketing messages of an inLighten system are a part of an overall approach to retail design in a financial facility. The video monitors can be a piece of the comprehen-sive customer experience created by the architects and interior designers of Daniels and Zermack in your new or existing facility.
Daniels and Zermack can design video installations including custom-built cabinets for waiting areas and ceiling and wall mounted monitors for lobby and teller areas. We have many other services for financial institutions, including long-range facility planning and retail design consultation, as part of our complete architectural and interior design services.
We would like the opportunity to do for your institution what we have done for hundreds of others – improve the appearance and functionality of their facilities.
The crucial area of retail consulting is one of the ways that Daniels and Zermack can bring its special expertise to create a better, more useful facility for your financial institution:
Contact Daniels and Zermack at 800-999-2090 for further information.