Bankers need to think digital rather than use the term ‘omnichannel’ because the Internet is not a channel.
I was at a conference recently when somebody said, “I hate the phrase ‘omnichannel,’” and then went on to talk about the cloud, big data and more management gobbledygook.
Now, don’t get me wrong, we all hate buzzwords but I really hate the use of the phrase “omnichannel” (I call this a phrase, as it is two words). I hate it because it’s just some made-up phrase that some technology marketing person dreamt up to talk about the challenge of all these digital touch-points.
PFM (Personal Financial Management) has been in the market for more than a decade now. In its early days PFM didn’t receive much attention from the market. Then, after Mint.com’s success, PFM was resurrected.
Since that time, various research findings confirmed that users are ready to embrace PFM. The market got the signal. Many analysts and digital channel managers believed that PFM was the next big thing in online banking and that it would be adopted by banks in a very short time. In 2010, Online Banking Report even quoted that: “Personal Finance Management (PFM) functionality is the highest potential ROI project for retail financial institutions to implement”.
Everyone in our industry acknowledges banks need to be different, and we’ve explored numerous initiatives on Banking.com, from video transactions to teller pods and community rooms. But how about serving up a cocktail with your account statement?
That’s one way to look at St. Petersburg, Fla.-based C1 Bank’s new branch in Miami’s Wynwood district. Sure, it’s got all the amenities every branch needs, but be prepared for the teller desk to become a bar, and a fully stocked kitchen ready to accommodate a sizeable party of movers and shakers. In fact, the location actually doubles as an event space.
Today’s world of instant gratification is driving a paradigm shift of customer service for financial institutions, where expectations are formed by firms like Apple, Zappos, Disney and Southwest Airlines.
Consumer expectations are being formed by service experiences outside of the financial services industry, where content, interactions, and features are rich, delivering an engaging and rewarding experience.
We are experiencing a customer service paradigm shift. Unlike any other time in history, today’s informed consumer is in the driver’s seat and holds the power to buy or not buy from a business depending on their experience with a product or service. Consumer expectations are shaped by the customer service they encounter across all industries, and they are accustomed to intuitive and easy to use products, positive human and virtual interactions, and getting what they want when they want it.
Banks have a unique opportunity to capitalize on the vast amounts of customer insight they hold to go beyond simply facilitating payments. They can reinvent themselves as an Everyday Bank, helping customers reach decisions about what to buy, when and where to purchase, and even helping to negotiate the best deals in a ubiquitous format.
Today’s banking and credit union customer is hyper-connected, highly informed and demanding a highly personalized approach with regards to communication, product development and customer service. These customers cannot be defined by a specific age or income category or geographic parameter, but by their ability (and desire) to adopt and apply new technologies to meet their banking needs.
Say “Hello” to Customer 3.0.
Best-in-class bank and credit union onboarding goes beyond just a mailing or a phone call. To drive engagement with new customers, offline and online channels must be optimized in a sequence and cadence of touches that reduces attrition and improves profitability.
Once banks crack the code on how to deliver a better experience to customers, they will position themselves to seize phenomenal opportunities to engage with customers.
As banks look for new revenue opportunities, they have to focus on existing customers because new ones are hard to come by. But even trying to increase business with the existing base is a big challenge because banks have made interaction with customers too complicated and frustrating.
Financial institutions are faced with a strategic dilemma: how to manage the polarity of customer needs without alienating one group or the other.
Financial institutions are facing extreme polarity in the financial needs and wants of the baby boomers, on one side of the spectrum, and the millennials on the other. The shift in demographics and advances in technology are forcing financial institutions to make difficult strategic decisions on product and services moving forward.
It’s time we looked at innovation and how it can be used to drive new customer propositions. ‘Oh no, not that buzzword again,’ I hear you all shout. But actually, I want to look at lack of innovation. Let me explain.
I was recently talking to a product manager at a bank about their new payments renovation project that was just starting. I was rather surprised to learn that without knowing all that was possible, they were already saying the first phase of the project would achieve nothing new whatsoever. The reason why is because their IT department has a policy that for anything new coming into the bank, the first phase is to always replicate what the bank is currently doing. The bank claims this is done to ensure that no functionality is lost with new Software.