4 Tips for Financial Marketers: How to Improve the Customer Experience

by RRD Marketing

4 Tips for Financial Marketers: How to Improve the Customer Experience

by RRD Marketing

by RRD Marketing

Financial customers are more savvy and fickle than ever. A three-year study by Viacom found that one in three Millennials (born 1981-2000) are open to switching banks in the next 90 days — not exactly great news for financial institutions. So how do you begin to improve the customer experience to keep them happy? Better yet, how can you become the trusted institution they recommend to a friend?

Here are four ways financial marketers can improve the customer experience, in order to circumvent attrition and bump up your customer base.

Map the financial customer journey.

Who is your customer? Customer journey mapping gives you the big picture on your customer’s experiences as they interact with your financial institution. Do they respond to loan offers? Make deposits at the branch? Pay bills online? Mapping helps you better understand your customers’ behaviors, which enables better decisions regarding how to speak to them and when.

In fact, you need to know your customer exceptionally well —  beyond their demographic information. If you only see customer “Bob” as a 42-year-old male who lives in the suburbs, before you know it, you end up pushing auto loan information to the newlyweds who came in last week about a home loan.

Consumers increasingly expect brands to know them and anticipate their needs, meaning companies need to leverage their data to create a personalized message and deliver it when it’s relevant to a consumer’s immediate situation.

Consumers increasingly expect brands to know them and anticipate their needs, meaning companies need to leverage their data to create a personalized message and deliver it when it’s relevant to a consumer’s immediate situation.

In order to leverage data that’s responsive, accurate and easily accessible, you need a centralized database. Companies that have an accurate picture of the customer, across all data points, are able to effectively drive engagement across every relevant customer touchpoint with communications that speak directly to the individual — not a generic “them.” One way to gather more information about customers is to ask them. More than half of consumers (57%) are okay with providing personal information (on a website) as long as it’s for their benefit and being used in responsible ways, according to the software company Janrain.

Get personal.

Brands who increase personalization in more channels can see five times the increase in overall consumer spending, according to a report by The E-Tailing Group.

Personalization integrates customer information into a content delivery framework so that specific services and offers that are highly relevant are highlighted accordingly. What can you personalize? A person’s name can act as an attention-grabber, but the following personalization elements also connect with customers:

  • Last interaction
  • Years as a customer
  • Account types
  • Banking preferences
  • Account offers and reminders
  • Life events
  • Imagery that relates to the customer, not just the offer

how to improve customer experience in financial communications

This kind of success with personalization was recently demonstrated through RRD’s efforts in which we implemented a successful three-phase approach to help a bank group target customers more effectively. Here’s what we did:

  • Developed a contact strategy framework to identify relationship objectives for every customer segment. Specific objectives were also outlined for spend, frequency, and channel.
  • Determined the best, most relevant message for each customer. Predictive analytics and linkages to data assets made each message highly personalized, leveraging banking activity, demographics, and channel preferences.
  • Implemented a conversion analysis and web-based reporting solution to provide insight into the effectiveness of each message, helping identify which customers are most likely to defect or open a new account.

The result: an annual program ROI of 146%, with a three-year program ROI of 685%. The program initiatives directly translated to $3.1 million in net margin annually.

how to improve customer experience in financial communications

Get mobile-friendlier.

As smartphone adoption grows, so will smartphone banking. In an August report, eMarketer estimated the number of U.S. adult smartphone banking users would increase by 8.8% to 53.9% of smartphone users. By 2021, more than 130 million adults (60% of smartphone users) will use a smartphone to access their financial accounts at least once per month.

By 2021, more than 130 million adults (60% of smartphone users) will use a smartphone to access their financial accounts at least once per month.

Financial institutions will need to invest even more in their mobile apps and experience, as well as how to present statements better through digital channels. Person-to-person (P2P) mobile payments are expanding rapidly, as a result of new players like Zelle that lets customers instantly transfer money at no cost. Venmo, the first to hit the market in 2009, remains popular among Millennials and continues to grow its user base.

To help improve the customer experience, many financial institutions, including Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America, are also introducing smart ATMs. These cardless ATMs are expected to help drive further mobile banking adoption among Baby Boomers and other groups.

Add value with interactive data.

Presenting data in a mobile-friendly way is mandatory but might not be enough. As digital communications become even more sophisticated, people will expect to receive data in a meaningful way. Smart organizations are using enhanced data visualization and interactivity.

Interactivity allows customers to play with the data directly to sort, filter, and view the data most important to them. If consumers can customize the data, they are much more likely to understand, learn from, remember, and appreciate the data. In other words, allowing customers to touch and feel data improves the customer experience. At RRD, we recently launched the SuperDoc web enhancement to add a layer of interactivity to PDFs so people can see activated content from different documents within one PDF.

The bottom line is the financial customer will continue to evolve and these trends will become even more important. With strategic plans that incorporate customer journey mapping, personalization, mobile banking implementation, and interactivity, financial institutions can effectively communicate with customers today — and well into the future.

How can we help you improve your customer experience and digital communication? Contact us

This post was originally published January 16, 2018.

Facebooktwitterlinkedinmail
Top