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“Mark Zmarzly rocked The Financial Brand Forum! Among a field of speakers including many of the biggest, brightest stars in the business, Mark truly shined. The audience loved Mark, rating him in the top three presenters at one of the financial industry’s most prestigious events. With his authentic, personal approach to storytelling, Mark connects people to his message at a deep, emotional level that really resonates with attendees. He’s among the very best.” — Jeffry Pilcher, CEO & Founder of The Financial Brand & Forum.


Mark has a diverse public speaking and facilitation background across multiple industries. He’s very passionate about the financial services industry, marketing, self branding, and life in general. Below is a list of current speaking topics and upcoming presentations, as well as several testimonials about Mark’s recent engagements.

2020 Speaking Gigs

  • March – Canvas Coworking – AWS for Startups
  • June – Ideas Camp at Bond University – Founder Journey
  • September – Far North Queensland – Founder to Founder Session
  • November – Lot14 Adelaide – AWS for Startups

Sky News Interview

2019 Speaking Gigs

  • March – Emcee the Hot DesQ Session at QODE for Advance Queensland.
  • April – Startup World Cup Australia Top 10 Finals Event – Hip Money and the Future of Savings.
  • July – Fireside Chat with Queensland’s Chief Entrepreneur for Bank of Queensland.
  • September – Queensland University FinTech Panel on the Future of FinTech and Financial Innovation.
  • October – CEBIT in Sydney

MetLife Financial Wellness Finals

2018 Speaking Gigs

  • January – University of Queensland Panel on Career Opportunities for Graduates.
  • February – Global Startup Weekend Women Mentor – Longreach, Australia.
  • February – Customer Acquisition Panel – theSPACE in Cairns, Australia.
  • February – Advance Queensland Hot DesQ Startup Showcase Demo.
  • March – When to Kill a Startup, Feature, or Product Presentation – River City Labs, Brisbane, Australia.
  • June – Gallup Builder Profile Entrepreneur Panel – University of Nebraska.
  • June – 1M Cups Lincoln – Australian Advance Queensland Grant Program.
  • September – River City Labs Friday Fast Pitch Event – Brisbane, Australia
  • September – University of Queensland Mentoring Event.
  • September – The Art of the Pitch – The Queensland Government Innovation Champions Network.

mz hot desq

2017 Speaking Gigs

  • March – SXSW – Top Five FinTech Pitch Event – Austin, TX.
  • May – Startup Week Omaha – FinTech Startup Feature Story – Hip Pocket. Techstars Blog Post:
  • June – Points of Light Civic Accelerator Demo Day – Seattle, WA.
  • November – Australia’s Intersekt FinTech Conference – Consumer Wealth and Investment Panel – Melbourne.
  • November – VISA Pitchfest Demo:
  • November – FinTech Queensland meetup panel on Intersekt takeaways.
  • November – The American Chamber in Australia – Networking for Future Leaders – Brisbane, Australia.
  • November – Institutional sales workshop for B2B startups – River City Labs, Brisbane, Australia.
  • November – Brisbane and Gold Coast Startup Weekends – Mentor and Speaker.
  • December – FinTech Queensland Intersekt FinTech Festival Panel.
  • December – iLabs – University of Queensland Session on Non Traditional Degrees and Career Paths.

2016 Speaking Gigs

  • April – #BankSocial Conference in NJ – Keynote on Harnessing the Power of Storytelling
  • June – LinkedIn Training for a $1.75B Bank in NY – Small Biz Team and Mortgage Team Training Sessions
  • June – LinkedIn Training for Financial Services Vendor’s Sales Team
  • August  – LinkedIn Training for Nebraska Bankers Association Young Bankers Conference
  • October – Pitch 180 Demo of Hip Money at Money20/20
  • October – How FinTech is Disrupting & Partnering with our Industry – Northwest Credit Union Association MAXX Conference. SlideShare:

2015 Speaking Gigs

  • March – Bank Innovaiton 2015: The Future In Focus. DEMOvation Challenge Winner:
  • March – Illinois Bankers Association – Using LinkedIn for Marketing & Sales + Social Media Best Practices
  • May – The Financial Brand Forum – Passion & Purpose in Banking
  • May – FinovateSpring – Hip Pocket Mortgage Peer Comparison Software Demo
  • June – Keynote for All Employee Rally for City Bank in Texas – Lubbock & Dallas
  • June – American Bankers Association School of Bank Marketing & Management – Leveraging LinkedIn
  • Sept – LinkedIn Training for Exec Team of a $700m Bank in IL
  • Oct – LinkedIn Training for $1.2B Bank in VA + Small Biz Training Session and Mortgage Team & Realtor Training
  • Nov – Wisconsin Bankers Association – Using LinkedIn for Bank Sales + Social Media Best Practices Keynote


2014 Speaking Gigs

  • April – New York Bankers Association Retail & Small Business Conference – Using LinkedIn for Marketing & Sales
  • April – New York Bankers Association Retail & Small Business Conference – Getting Customers Attention in a Digital World (Panel)
  • June – ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking – Social Media Best Practices
  • September – ABA Bank Marketing Conference – Keynote with Dan Swift of LinkedIn
  • October – Employee Rally for MidWestOne Bank in Iowa – The Story of Startups: How Banks and Startups Can Work Together
  • October – Nebraska Bankers Association Retail and Marketing Conference – Best Practices in Social Media

2013 Speaking Gigs

  • February – Cause Camp Speaker
  • September – ABA Bank Marketing Conference – Ambassador for Social Media sessions
  • November – TEDxLincoln Speaker

2012 Speaking Gigs

  • April – J.D. Power & Associates Financial Services Social Media Roundtable.
  • August – American Marketing Association – Self Branding for Marketers
  • September – Personal Branding Session for UNL’s College of Business & Center for Entrepeneurship Class
  • September – ABA Bank Marketing Conference – Ambassador for Pre-conference Workshop on Social Media and two other sessions
  • October – Speaker at TEDxLincoln – “The Yes/No Yin Yang
  • December – Session Leader at Leadership Resources’ Year End Event

2011 Speaking Gigs

Speaking Topics

The presentation topics below have already been designed for financial institutions and their associations.  Content can be presented in a condensed 60-120 minute format and at a high-level overview with the intent of generating new ideas…or each topic can be done in a ½ or full day workshop format with real hands on, in-depth discussion and application.

How FinTech is Disrupting & Partnering with Our Industry

This is a keynote or breakout session most recently done at the Northwest Credit Union Associate MAXX conference in October of 2016. In it, attendees learn how the FinTech companies are attacking our industry as well as working with financial institutions around the country to drive positive change. Examples include Pivotus Ventures (Umpqua Bank’s new innovation venture), Eastern Labs, MX, and Abel Lending, and BankMobile.

The Story of Startups: How Financial Institutions & Startups Can Work Together

Most banks and credit unions don’t understand the difference between a traditional business and the new emerging startup scene, which includes high-growth software startups, business accelerators/incubators, and lean startup methodologies. The result is they don’t understand this segment or its potential or, worse yet, treat them like traditional commercial prospects and thus alienate them. As a former bank consultant turned software entrepreneur, Mark Zmarzly is in a unique position to help banks understand this new market and how they can bring startup methods into the bank’s own product design processes. Presentations typically include local market research and startup spotlights.

Why Our Industry is Failing to Innovate & What We Can Do About It

Startups like Simple and Square continue to penetrate the financial services space yet bankers seem unwilling or unable to grasp the significance of what’s happening. Worse yet, we continue to redesign products based on optimizing fee revenue instead of designing better solutions to our customers’ problems. Are we too steeped in tradition to innovate or do can we experience a significant enough paradigm shift to cause our own disruption and thus insure our continuation? Let’s explore lean startup principles that you can implement today to bring customer-first innovations to our industry.

Using LinkedIn to Increase Sales

With 400+ million members, is quickly becoming a standard complement for in-person networking and developing new business.  Your business development staff cannot afford to miss out on the advantages of online networking.  Through both introductory and in-depth workshops, your business bankers will gain access to the hidden networks within your community, learn how to discover valuable actionable business intelligence about both prospects and current clients, and discover insights that will help them stand out as resources and thought leaders within your market.

Specifically, it can help your bank:

  • Find and approach warm leads and decrease cold-calling.
  • Generate more business opportunities.
  • Discover how people within the community are connected to each other.
  • Learn more about existing clients to create more cross-selling opportunities.
  • Gain valuable working knowledge about an emerging tool that can then be passed on to small    business clients and prospects.

Best Practices in Financial Services Social Media

Banks and Credit Unions large and small are still struggling with how best to use social media to move from awareness to engagement.  Through an in-depth analysis of the history of social media and our industry’s attempts to engage consumers, we’ll analyze today’s best trends and how your institution can leverage social media in the future to drive engagement and sales.

Specifically, we’ll look at:

  • Great examples of large, multifaceted social media campaigns from institutions around the world.
  • What’s working in the US to drive social engagement in brand, mission, and product.
  • Why storytelling, voice, and brand all need to come together in a consistent fashion for social media to excel.
  • Specific case studies of brands inside and outside of Financial Services that have excelled at using social media to engage and sell.

Passion & Purpose in Banking

This is a new keynote presentation that’s been customized for a couple of audiences thus far. One was for a group of 1,000 bank and credit union marketers. The other was for groups of 400 and 90 people for an all bank employee rally to kickoff a new sales initiative. This is a fun and engaging presentation meant to inspire people to think deeper about our industry, how we “show up” each day, and how we can bring all of ourselves to our work to impact each other and our customers.

Harnessing the Power of Storytelling

Whether engaging your customers to become advocates, presenting a new product to management, or advocating for a career promotion, effective storytelling has the power to move your audience to action.

In this session, we’ll discuss the elements of passionate storytelling and how they can impact your company and career. Spoiler alert: everyone who attends is going to be winning at life by the end.

Personal Branding for Financial Marketers

People often classify themselves based on their job title, but we’re so much more than just marketers.  This presentation centers on the importance of building your personal brand and how you can accelerate your growth and value within your organization and the industry.  By learning how to build and leverage your network of people and information, you will begin to see how daily action steps can set you apart and make you an invaluable linchpin to those around you.

You’ll learn:

1.         How you can effectively position yourself as a resource within your organization and industry.

2.         Some simple tools and action steps to take your personal brand to the next level.

3.         Effective ways to develop and feed new leads and ideas to others in your organization.

4.         New ideas to amp up your online presence to gain visibility and valuable new relationships.

5.         How can you become a person others seek out to help them and the organization succeed.


Other Topics

Other presentations related to social media, customer acquisition, product development, and business development can be designed and approved on request.


“Mark is a gifted speaker, and he’s hilarious! He knows a variety of creative methods to ensure you’ll learn what you need to, and have a blast while doing it! He’s full of ideas and he’s great at bringing a room together, encouraging feedback and generating excitement. Mark’s one the best speakers I’ve worked with, and I’ve worked with dozens. If you want to learn more about cutting edge trends (marketing, social media, etc), you’ll want to hire Mark immediately..and you’re guaranteed to have a good time.”  — Conference Planner

“Mark is one of the rare breed of bank marketers who not only knows the industry, but never stops enhancing his learning and understanding of the changes taking place and the impact on the industry. He is always prepared for a meeting and takes pride in digging deeper than others go to better understand a client’s needs and potential solutions. As opposed to ‘pushing product’, he focuses on the challenges faced by his client. This lets his clients and prospects know he has done his homework. On top of all this, Mark always shows up with a smile on his face and an enthusiasm to take on any task. His communication skills are tremendous and his speeches and presentations always receive high marks. Bottom line, he always brings something valuable to the table and is a student and teacher of our business.”  — Senior Marketing Services Director

“Mark’s presentation style is both informational, as well as entertaining.  His command of the material is quite evident, and he is adept at applying real world scenarios that attendees could relate to.”  — SVP of Retail Banking

“I have attended Mark Zmarzly’s training sessions over the years and truly feel they are among some of the best I have sat through. Mark has an amazing ability to truly teach his audience while really engaging them in the thought process, as well. Anytime I am attending a conference and he is one of the speakers I make sure I attend his session.  I also currently serve with him on the American Bankers Association Marketing Conference Advisory Board and feel he is a great asset to our advisory group due to the great prospective he has on the bank sales and marketing industry.  It’s my opinion that any association that has the opportunity to use Mark’s wealth of knowledge would benefit greatly from his delivery.”  — SVP of HR & Marketing

“I attended a conference session in which Mark and another industry leader debated the ‘fee or free’ concept of checking.  It was quite possibly the most interesting session I’ve ever attended.  Mark is not only energetic and engaging in his delivery, he is also thought-provoking and articulate.  Mark does his homework , backing up his ideas with research, yet goes a step farther, sharing new ways of interpreting data.  I consider Mark  Zmarzly a ‘thought leader’ in our industry.”  — SVP of Marketing

“I had the opportunity to ambassador a session set up as a “fee or free checking” debate between Mark and another high quality industry expert. Using his persuasive style, plus information from Acton Marketing, Mark more than held his own and debated brilliantly while keeping his audience engaged. I was more than pleased that I chose Mark to represent his side of the debate. Mark is quickly making a name for himself in this industry.”  — EVP of Retail Banking

“I attended Mark Zmarzly’s presentation on the future of free checking at the 2011 ABA Marketing Conference and found him to be well versed on the topic and armed with ideas of what I should consider in managing my checking portfolio going forward.  He understood my profitability challenges as a bank marketer as well as the current regulatory environment. Definitely the best session I attended while at this conference!”  — EVP/Chief Retail Officer

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