Industry Insight articles

Farmers and Merchants bank exterior

Are more branches better? Community banks weigh in

Are more branches better? Community banks weigh in

With an increase in online traffic and challenges to in-person banking, community banks may be asking themselves if new branches are necessary. But many bank leaders report they’re investing in new branches because they’re strategic tools for growth.

social media magnet illustration

6 ways to boost your social media strategy

Community banks are building relationships through an active, thoughtful presence on social media. Rather than a distraction, these platforms are an extension of the close customer relationships that community banks foster. Here, experts share their top strategies for a winning social media presence.

Sherry Valley, vice president and senior business banker at Minnesota Lakes Bank

Out of Office: Sherry Valley

Sherry Valley, a vice president and senior business banker at $153 million-asset Minnesota Lakes Bank of Delano, Minn., has been riding motorcycles since 2010, a hobby that has taken her across the country.

Rebeca Romero Rainey

Rebeca Romero Rainey: You make an impact

When I consider what I love about community banking, I get a clear visual: overlapping concentric circles with one common center. Each circle represents an element of your impact on communities, including people, culture, economic growth, personal and professional development, and more. But in the center of everything lies the human connection.

Why we need Black-owned banks

Black-owned community banks have a long history of serving Americans historically left out of the mainstream banking system. Many well-established community banks continue this legacy today, but one troubling trend has emerged in the past two decades: The number of Black-owned banks is steadily declining. How can the industry advocate for change to help these banks—and their customers—thrive?