August 26, 2021

Evolution or Revolution? Rethinking Customer Engagement

The banking industry changed faster in one year than at any other time in history. And with change came opportunity. In many ways, this digital transformation caught up with the desires of consumers – particularly the younger generations – to experience a more flexible financial journey.

Consumer preferences have always evolved quickly based on the technology of the day. Consider some major shifts in the financial industry brought on by the constant desire for convenience:

  • 1950: Credit cards become the first portable payment solution
  • 1960s: ATMS allow access to funds outside bank hours and locations
  • 1989: Remote financial services are enabled via computer tablets
  • 1990: PayPal facilitates wireless fund transfers
  • 2000s: Smartphones enable mobile banking
  • 2011: Google Wallet introduces mobile payment technology

Today we are experiencing another major shift in the financial industry as the evolution of customer services encountered another major catalyst in the form of a worldwide pandemic. COVID-19 protocols accelerated the timeline for many banks and credit unions to launch fully digital customer service lines in order to stay connected with their account-holders, meaning that the banking industry changed faster in one year than at any other time in history.

 

But, within the turmoil of change came opportunity. In many ways, this digital transformation caught up with the desires of consumers – particularly the younger generations– to experience a more flexible financial journey. A recent survey discovered that 71% of those surveyed now prefer multichannel interactions, while 25% want a fully digitally-enabled private banking journey.

This fast-paced evolution will most likely continue because digital banking services offered as a result of shelter-in-place protocols fundamentally accelerated the change in consumer habits. And, as many more consumers experienced the benefits of digital technology and digital communication, their corresponding expectations continued increased even more.The challenge many FIs are facing today is embracing digital solutions while also maintaining that personal touch that enhances the customer journey and builds trust.

The challenge exists today because most FIs were unprepared for the dramatic and rapid shift to digital required by unprecedented worldwide circumstances.  The challenge was met by digital banking being possible bit not always optimal.

 

Strong, consistent digital communication is imperative at a time when many customers are keeping their distance because of the pandemic while simultaneously reporting that they are more likely to switch banks following a negative digital experience. In contrast, connecting with digital-centric consumers during these uncertain times is key to improving long-term customer loyalty. Supporting the customer through smart, omnichannel banking provides unprecedented relevance and exceeds customer expectations to set the standard for the customer experience.  “Smart” says that my financial institution knows me.

The reality today is that there’s a new normal for digital banking. Customers simply expect more - more digital channels, more information, more and better communication. Yes, this means communicating digitally – but with a personal touch.  

FIs need to implement solutions that manage data and communication across channels throughout each banking consumer’s life and financial journey. This requires technology solutions that enable the financial institution to treat account holders uniquely, at scale.  In turn, this solution will provide a hugely elevated customer experience that transforms data into relevance, trust, and loyalty.

In fact, the future is here. DeepTarget has supported its FI clients to thrive in this time of change. FIs have been able to go beyond traditional customer service to create a truly seamless digital experience across channels and deliver the right message to the right individual at the right time on the right channel. And they have been able to do this by actually decreasing costs. Award-winning and patent-pending DeepTarget DXP is in use by hundreds of community banks and credit unions who are automating intelligence and AI-based marketing and sales campaigns. It is powered by a one-stop enterprise solution that allows FIs to create data-powered designs once and use them to engage account holders in unique digital experiences powered by in-journey banners and social media inspired smart stories across all digital app spaces for a meaningful digital experience.

The future is here - for the financial institutions that want to reimagine digital customer engagement and make it a reality.

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