The strategy and efficiency of the large Israeli banks to follow the trend of Internet marketing and advertising is poor compared with banks abroad, while the rest of the local banks have started to discover the potential, according to financial Web site SmartMoney
"The banking system is still trapped in a marketing approach that is more patterned and conservative," said SmartMoney CEO Gaby Ben-Ami. "The market share of small- and medium-sized banks in advertising on the Internet is greater than their market share in the banking system."
The country's large banks, he claimed, are still not prepared to cooperate with private Internet promoters, while the rest of the banks have identified the potential and are exploiting it.
"The large banks are convinced that they can, by themselves, carry out Internet and other marketing activities via campaigns for certain products and the strong support of outdoor billboards, newspapers and television," said Ben-Ami.
"However, there is much evidence that Internet advertising is much more efficient and much cheaper and this is where the market is going.
"In the US, the competition between banks is so fierce, that every bank is prepared to cooperate with any Internet site and provide content and financial instruments. In England, the Internet advertising budget, for the first time, outgrew television."
In contrast to the large banks, he said, large insurance companies are more open and have learned to use the Internet and to cooperate with different bodies.