Executive Summary Leadership at Commerce Bank knew what it needed to do to be successful in the banking industry. They knew from the get go that they wanted to focus on differentiating themselves from competing banks. They wanted to compete on service rather than price recognizing that their prices weren’t always the best in the industry. Their corporate strategy was set around their customers having a positive, memorable, and consistent experience when they visit any of the Commerce Bank branches. They relied heavily on research to determine why customers left their financial institutions in favor of a competitor and they made it their goal to make Commerce Bank stand out from the rest. Commerce Bank capitalized on what other banks were doing wrong. Over the years, Commerce Bank did everything from being opened seven days per week to handing out dog biscuits for drive-through customers to having bank mascots in the branches entertaining customers. During 2002, the retailtainment concept was introduced (Frei, 2006). The idea was ensuring customers were entertained even if they were in the branch waiting in long lines. Branches were encouraged to come up with ideas for the new concept. Ideas ranged from having hot dog carts in the branches to having jugglers engage in a performance. The goal was to give customers the ultimate experience while in a Commerce Bank branch and continue to deliver on the company’s mission of differentiation.
Background From the beginning of Commerce Bank in 1973, their main corporate strategy was to differentiate themselves within the banking industry in order to grow and gain market share. The first bank location was opened in southern New Jersey and has since spread into Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York. Expanding into New York represented a huge opportunity for the one-time community bank. Commerce Bank branded themselves as “America’s Most Convenient Bank” with branches open seven days a week and expanded
References: Frei, F. (2006). Commerce Bank.