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The Forbin Blog

Aug 24

Lock it Up! 6 Practical Tips for Cyber Security at Smaller FIs

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

Cyber Security is crucial at smaller financial institutions

 

 

There is a reckoning coming for smaller financial institutions when it comes to cyber security. Until this year, online thieves have mostly focused on larger institutions in the country because of the amount of personal and financial information they hold. However, that trend is changing.

 

In an article titled “Large Banks Team Up in War Against Cyberthieves” in the Aug. 10, 2016 edition of the Wall Street Journal, Sr. Special Writer Robin Sidel notes that “eight of the largest U.S. banks are forming a group that seeks to tackle the growing cyberthreat.”

 

While this indicates more urgency to the security environment that most banks have been slow to adapt to, it does leave one nagging question: what about smaller financial institutions? Most of these banks don’t have the dollars or manpower to put toward security like the large national banks do. And, according to a July report from Beazley, smaller financial institutions are now squarely in cyberthieves’ crosshairs.

 

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Aug 3

The Three Keys to Content Marketing

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

Content Marketing relies on a customer focus

 

What do your customers think of your marketing strategy? Does your marketing create meaningful interactions with your customers? What marketing platform creates the most content for your customers? If you can’t answer any of these questions without saying “ummm…” then you need to look at the content marketing strategy your financial institution is running on, if it has one at all.

 

Content marketing is “based on the premise of nourishing relationships with your current and prospective customers and providing value beyond what your product or service has to offer.” Once you figure out WHY you should participate in content marketing, it’s important to figure out HOW to participate in content marketing. The three keys to content marketing that I believe are essential are:

  1. Stay on Brand
  2. Be Spontaneous and Engaging
  3. Create Content FOR Customers

Successfully focusing on these three areas will help you create relevant content for your customers.

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Jul 29

Is PowerWeb 4.0 the New Pokémon Go? Maybe…?

Posted by vgmforbin in Uncategorized

Forbin_BlogGraphic_IsPowerweb4.0TheNewPokemonGo

I’ll admit that I am NOT a “gamer.”  I have never been a video game guy (even though I was a teenager in the 1980’s) and never even owned a Nintendo or PlayStation (gasp) and I honestly never understood the Pokémon craze when it was first introduced in the 1990’s. Nope, not one bit.

So imagine my surprise to see this Pokémon Go craze that has taken over in less than a week. It hasn’t been unleashed in most countries yet and has already may even garner more online attention and searches than SnapChat and all the Kardashians put together! It’s brought people outside on walks for the first time in years and has even caused traffic accidents! So what does this have to do with home medical equipment and HME websites you ask? Will there be a “CPAP Mask GO” or “Wheeled Walker GO” coming out soon? I doubt it, but we are working on it. What this really shows is how much our culture depends on our phones!

Though they were once just rotary-dialed utilitarian devices used for verbal communication, our phones are now an extension of our hands like an add-on body part. They are everywhere, at all times, for any and all reasons, and no reason whatsoever. We can’t and don’t want to EVER be without our phones!

Does your website go with people wherever and whenever they go? Are you and your website mobile-friendly and mobile responsive? If you had a new Powerweb 4.0 from VGM Forbin it would be.

While we may never see your website becoming the digital sweetheart of the millennials, there are a huge number of people looking for your website, your business and the products you offer. These numbers will only continue to grow as the number of baby boomers, their aging parents, and their Smartphones, grow. A mobile-responsive website is no longer just a nice thing to have, it’s as essential as having an accessible front door at your business if not more. A mobile-responsive website means people can use their phones to contact you and order products in the car, at work, at a ballgame, or anywhere! A new Powerweb 4.0 from VGM Forbin can get you there. These HME-specific websites have user-friendly and search engine-friendly content, a huge HME catalog, online forms galore, social media icon links, clean, modern designs and so much more!

So while your new Powerweb 4.0 website may never cause millions of people to walk around like screen-addicted zombies, it just may be the thing to connect your customers and potential customers with your home medical equipment store.  Call Forbin today at 877-814-7485 or contact us online and talk to your regional rep about what a new Powerweb 4.0 HME website can do for you. In the meantime, we’ll be working on creating a “CPAP Mask GO” or “Wheeled Walker GO” app.

Jul 20

The Future of Banking: It’s All About Mobile

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

Bring innovation to your bank with the introduction of a mobile banking app.

Do you remember when free checking was all the rage? Every bank wanted to offer it and every consumer demanded that their bank had it. Look at free checking now. Its unheard of for a bank to not offer free checking. So what’s the current necessity for banks and their customers? Mobile banking, but simply offering the app isn’t enough. Banks need a new differentiator to keep their customers loyal and interactive.

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Jul 6

Content Marketing: What’s It All About?

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

Is the content you create meaningful or meaningless?

 

Pop Quiz!

 

What is the process of creating high quality, valuable content to attract, inform and engage an audience while also promoting your brand?

 

If you answered “content marketing,” you’re a winner! Content marketing is the publishing of content to influence customers without directly selling to them. Think of it as encouraging, but not forcing; advising, but not requiring.

 

Content marketing can be anything from social media posts and reviews for your business to your own published posts, blogs or articles. Often times, content marketing in financial institutions comes in the form of reviews and referrals. However, content marketing is much more than simply creating content.

 

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Jun 28

#1 Tool to Maximize the Value of your Marketing Department

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

There are a lot of platforms, marketing attribution helps narrow down which ones provide the best return.

 

“Houston, we have a problem… A marketing problem… I know, not again… We’re really finding it hard to pick a marketing platform that works for our customer base… Yeah, I don’t know what we’re going to do…”

 

Does this conversation sound familiar to you? If so, you’re not alone. According to data gathered at the 2014 Financial Brand Forum:

  • 46 percent of the financial institutions polled said they “struggle to quantify the results and impact” of their marketing
  • 18 percent of those polled said they “use guesswork as often as we use hard data” to measure marketing efforts
  • Only 15 percent said they have a “good idea of how much we get from our marketing investments”

 

Additionally, the “majority of marketers (51 percent) in an Experian[i] survey use simplistic or inaccurate forms of marketing attribution… or use none at all,” writes Jeffrey Pilcher, CEO/President and Publisher of the Financial Brand.

 

This is a huge problem for marketing departments within financial institutions. How can you expect to deliver out-of-this-world results to prove your worth if you don’t know how?

 

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Jun 23

Web Governance & SEO: Why Your Website is Never Truly “Done”

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking, General, Home Medical Providers

Your website is an ongoing project that requires regular attention.

 

When you purchase a product, you expect it to be complete. Just imagine if Big Macs suddenly had no special sauce, if iPhones couldn’t download apps or Campbell’s chicken and noodle soup was just noodles. There would be riots in the streets.

 

When it comes to your company’s website, however, it’s much harder to say when it’s done. Why? Because just like your business, your website should continue to grow and evolve.  I’d even go so far as to say your website is a living organism, and should be given as much attention as a beloved family pet.

 

“But I don’t have time!” you say.

 

Really?

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Jun 17

New Website Rules Pose Legal Risk for ALL Privately Held Companies

Posted by vgmforbin in WCAG

WCAG Forbin Report

If you own a brick and mortar business, you likely know and comply with the existing building standards set by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  Recent developments in ADA regulations will now include websites as part of Title III of the ADA.  This change means your company website(s) will soon be legally required to comply with a set of standards called the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0).

 

Website accessibility elements that will be mandated by 2018 for privately held companies fall into two groups: visual and functional.  Visual accessibility includes the areas of your website that may make it difficult to navigate for people who are totally blind, suffer from color blindness, or have light sensitivity. When testing your site for visual accessibility, perform inspections that reveal color contrast in addition to evaluating readability on key action items.

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Jun 15

Data and Relevant Marketing: Two Keys to Driving Engagement

Posted by Matt Cunard in Banking

Combining data with customer-focused marketing can help boost customer engagement.

 

By Matt Cunard, Sr. Digital Marketer, and Mariah Holmes, Financial Marketing Intern

 

Who ultimately owns your brand? Is it the CEO? Maybe the marketing and public relations departments? What about your frontline teller staff? Nope, nope, and nope. The owners of your brand are your customers. Your institution runs on the needs and wants of your customers, and their experiences with your bank play a major role in your mutual success.

 

Let me paint you a picture of two banks, each with the intention of providing the best service, but going about it in two different ways.

 

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May 25

6 Exciting Changes to Online Advertising as We Know It

Posted by vgmforbin in Search Engine Marketing, Search Engines, Web Marketing

Google

Google AdWords, Google’s online advertising platform, is undergoing a major overhaul. Yesterday Google announced exciting changes for the realm of online advertising. These new innovations will be implemented to online advertisers throughout 2016 and 2017. Be on the look-out for these key updates:

  • Expanded text advertising for all devices.
  • Dynamic display ads that adapt to the best format for different webpage designs.
  • Separate bid adjustments for desktop, tablet, and mobile platforms.
  • Advanced local advertising capabilities through Google Maps and Google search engine.
  • A newly designed layout for the AdWords platform.
  • Improved online-to-offline traffic measurement.

To keep your business relevant in this world of technology, it is imperative to stay on top of industry news and prepare for changes before they happen. VGM Forbin is committed to helping our clients stay ahead of the game with up-to-date knowledge and continual education.

 

Tomorrow, in our follow-up post, several of our team members will share the changes they are the most enthusiastic about and how it will benefit our clients. Stay tuned for more!

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