A 100% New Zealand bank, Heartland found Extractable through a global search online and came to us with an ambitious goal and open minds. With much of New Zealand controlled by larger banks in Australia, Heartland remains committed to helping Kiwi farmers, wine makers, tour providers and other small businesses grow with localized resources and funding. To get greater visibility with these prospects, they recognized that a strong digital strategy would be a key factor to success.
One of our first discoveries at Heartland was that their web presence had a decentralized strategy, with stand alone sites for different offerings (retirement, auto loans, etc.) and had little data strategy in place. They did invest in intermittent radio advertising, but without strong attribution models, it was hard to quantify the ROI on that spending.
Through our research, we also found that the 450,000+ small businesses in New Zealand performed over 10 million searches annually, and that with relevant financial search terms, it wasn’t the big Aussie banks that were dominating, but smaller operations that could be outperformed with a strong SEO strategy. Estimating conservatively, we saw that capturing just 2% of that traffic, and converting 5% of those folks (with an average of $7000 in assets) could grow Heartland by $70,000,000. Suddenly, the $100M goal seemed more reachable.
Beyond delivering SEO and digital marketing recommendations, we also saw opportunities for growth in how Heartland managed their loan process. The majority of loans originated online, but were then signed and funded offline. We looked at their call center data, and showed them how converting more of their services online could realize more growth. We also discussed options around remarketing, linked/referrer initiatives and using email marketing to nurture potential leads.
Since our short strategy engagement concluded, we have been watching Heartland to chart their progress. We were happy to see that most of the site recommendations we gave them were implemented – product level navigation, consolidated URL strategy, more visible and strategically placed calls to action, and more prominent customer testimonials throughout their site. They continue to be a steady force in the New Zealand financial services market.