President of the locally based Orange Media Group, Earny St. Catherine, this week addressed the largest gathering of regional bankers and non-traditional financial services providers urging them put their customers at the centre of everything they do
St. Catherine was one of only two local presenters at the 40th AGM and Conference of the Caribbean Association of Banks – CAB – the other being the Dr. Reginald Darius, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance. His presentation focussed on ‘the importance of the sharing the brand experience to business success.’
He spoke of the gap between what’s important to people and what brands deliver. He told the gathering that “people reward brands that share as sharing reflects strongly with actions that drive business value.”
According to St. Catherine, shared dialogue is the first step toward sharing a brand. He said on average 90 percent of persons want a brand to engage in more meaningful conversations with them. He told regional bankers: “People want you to listen, show genuine interest, and most importantly, act on what you hear.”
The Marketing Guru’s appeal comes at a time when indigenous banks in the OECS are challenged to change the way they do business in order to survive. They are also faced with the challenge of inevitably considering a deep collaboration and possible merger to remain competitive. St. Catherine noted: “At this time Banks are faced with increased competition, regulations, contracting economies and record delinquent loans. It is therefore difficult for them to either lose customer focus or not revolutionise their process to make the customer the centre of their ecosystem. This will inevitably exacerbate their already stressed positions and lead to an even worse performance. The customer must be a critical part of the process”.
The CAB AGM and Conference brings together top executives and leaders of the banking and financial services sector in the region. It’s the most influential group of financial service professionals in the region, many of whom have been his clients. Orange Media Group has rebranded and executed marketing campaigns for major financial institutions in the OECS including Bank of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, 1st National Bank of Saint Lucia, Bank of Saint Lucia, Antigua Commercial Bank the and Eastern Caribbean Home Mortgage Bank.
St. Catherine shared the spotlight with Keynote Speaker Brett King and Anthony De Lima. Brett King is founder and CEO of the breakout mobile bank Moven, and author to some of the financial sector’s revolutionary texts which advocate technologically integrated approaches to 21st century banking. Anthony De Lima is Co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Curacao Technology Exchange (CTEX). He has more than 27 years of experience in the IT, Financial services and Telecommunications sectors.
A true marketing and media communications professional, Earny St. Catherine cut his teeth on screen at an age when many were too young to even appreciate the importance of the nightly news. An innovator and entrepreneur, St. Catherine has used his decades of experience in key regional markets to seed, evolve and grow a business with far-reaching impact. He has held industry positions on both sides of ‘the brief’ with successful stints as a marketing consultant to several state run, multi-national and major locally owned institutions throughout the Caribbean where he initiated high-impact strategies, seeing them through to executions that bear his signature quality stamp. Earny St. Catherine is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing – London.
Over 200 international finance professionals are attended the 40th CAB AGM and Conference at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Resort & Spa under the theme “Redefining Strategy – The Leadership Challenge.” The Caribbean Association of Bankers provides a platform through which financial institutions across the region can share their experiences, ideas and expertise in tackling internal and external challenges to the financial services sector and the economies of the region.
Caribbean Association of Banks, Inc (CAB) is a community of banks and other financial institutions in the Caribbean region, whose mission is to advance the interest of member institutions through advocacy, networking, provision of training and other solutions to strengthen the Caribbean financial sector.
The St. Lucia Conference comes at a time of great turbulence in international financial markets. St. Catherine said he embraced the privilege of addressing the leaders of financial services in the region and hopes his presentation drives home the importance of connecting with communities and building relationships with their various demographics for long-term viability and strong corporate identity.