Interesting research by the National Bureau of Economic Research reveals that children born in September excel over their August-born peers. It was reported that September-born children were 2.1% more likely to go to college and 7.2% more likely to graduate from a competitive college on average, than those born in August. We thought this knowledge was interesting and may be useful to you at a future point in time perhaps.
Along these same lines, if you find yourself (and your bank) in need of a way to store other important information to use later, we might suggest considering knowledge banks. An increasing numbers of banks are creating online content to benefit their small business clients. They write about economic predictions, risk management, finance, business performance and real estate as a way to partner with clients and provide value to them while driving traffic to the website. This is a great way to engage your customers and provide them with a competitive advantage.
That said, writing high-quality online content is time-consuming and puts extra demands on bank staff whose days are already full. Whether you hire an outside vendor, ask your own marketing staff to write posts or put the onus on other staff members, a knowledge bank may be able to help you streamline content creation and make it less painful and time-consuming.
So, what is a knowledge bank? It is a central repository of information to gather as much information as possible. A knowledge bank can also take a few different forms. It can be software or part of an intranet, or most simply, a spreadsheet workbook. The format of course is up to you and your bank for ease of use, accessibility and cost effectiveness.
Once you have decided on the format to use for your knowledge bank, you need to start collecting information. First, start off with industry and market specific information. Then, gradually add information that is meaningful to your business customers. This can include economic conditions, growing industries, ways to improve small business efficiencies and many others. Then, when a credible source writes an article or post on subjects that are meaningful to your business customers, store that information in your knowledge bank. As you find interesting or helpful content with other reliable online sources, add those links in the appropriate topic areas as well.
A knowledge bank not only helps contain and centralize the information your customers may need, but can also provide you with new content ideas as your repository grows. The more it grows, the less time it will take to post new content and drive web traffic while helping your customers in important and sometimes overlooked ways.
Be consistent in working on your knowledge bank. Add dates, relevant links, topics, and content as a normal part of a work day or week. Be clear on bank staff expectations such as who will add new information, particularly in certain areas of expertise. Have them update the sections regularly, so your examples and insights are fresh and up-to-date.
Knowledge banks also work best when multiple people contribute to them. To ensure that all that information is stored consistently, set guidelines for all contributors and users so that it is not cluttered with duplicates or irrelevant information. Each topic gets a dedicated page with a tab to easily find the information needed for each article. Every time someone at your bank writes a post or sees a relevant article, a link or file goes into the appropriate tab.
Knowledge banks most likely have not been on your radar, but they are effective tools that can help you create and provide useful information to facilitate your role as a partner with your business customers. Before you know it, you will have many key resources to help guide your customers in the areas most needed and keep them coming back to you.