Today at Loyalty World in London, I had an opportunity to interview Anthony Thomson, co-founder and Chairman of Metro Bank. Launched in 2010, Metro Bank is the first new High Street Bank in the UK in 140 years.
Anthony shared with me how he made great customer service (and the resulting buzz generated from it) the primary driver of the brand.
The market prior to Metro Bank was an oligopoly controlled by a handful of big banks. Anthony told me the customer satisfaction among high street banks was horrible which was the Metro Bank opportunity.
Interestingly, Anthony and his colleagues didn’t look at other banks for market research, instead looked at retailers like John Lewis and Apple that have great customer service.
This led to retail bank branches open seven days a week, 12 hours a day.
Metro Bank is pet friendly (which has driven media attention).
I love this quote from the video: "What it says to people is that if they can bring their dog into our bank and we don’t mind if he pees on the floor, or worse which is what dogs do, then maybe we care more about you as a customer than we do about us as a bank."
They even ran a contest where dogs were given samples of three tasty treats and asked to vote for their favourites. The biscuit which has the most votes across Metro Bank branches nationwide was named as the official Metro Bank Dog Biscuit.