Customers have a lot of options when it comes to choosing apps or services for most everyday tasks, such as fitness tracking, meal planning, and ride sharing. In 2019, however, there are still few digital channels for banking and finance that serve customers at the speed and capacity that’s expected today.
For financial institutions—whether you’re a bank, credit union, or insurance company—how do you build a customer acquisition strategy for customers who expect a multitude of digital choices? What steps do you need to take to attract customers who want the best, most catered, and personalized omnichannel experience? As you begin to build out your New Year’s resolutions and New Year’s digital banking strategy, here are 4 ways to attract new banking customers with technology.
Build and earn customer trust, better understand your customers, rethink distribution and engagement, and innovate like a FinTech.
1. Do the research
To know how to attract new customers, you need to know what they want. To know what they want, look at the behaviors of the customers you already have. Having an existing customer base gives you the upper hand as you have access to key insights that’ll be helpful.
Some things to look at are your customers’ current income, spending patterns, saving and investing habits, frequency of banking interactions based on devices, or preference of banking products.
To go even deeper, an EY study on Global Consumer Banking showed that when finding these customer insights, the four ‘buckets’ to focus your data on are building and earning customer trust, better understanding your customers, rethinking distribution and engagement, and innovating like a FinTech.
2. Know your growing (and shrinking) customer base
Yes—we all know that millennials are the fastest growing and largest population out there. They’re seeking financial services at a younger age than any other generation, more control over their financial lives, and digital options for their financial needs. In fact, a PwC study showed that 82% of 18 to 24-year-old smartphone owners say that they use mobile banking.
The elephant in the room? Baby Boomers. Even though they aren’t the largest market to target, they are expected to increase their use of smartphone and mobile technologies over the next few years. So, don’t eliminate them entirely from your customer acquisition strategy.
3. Don’t eliminate the branch
According to an Accenture survey, 87% of 4,000 customers interviewed still want human interaction when it comes to banking. Branches are a great tool to attract customers who want initial in-person meetings for their financial needs and a representative to talk to about complicated or private financial inquiries.
Branches also offer a very tangible opportunity to increase your banking customer experience. Borrowing from other industries to integrate innovative technologies can give tremendous insight into the future of digital banking. Beacon, NFC, and conversational technologies are creative examples of mobile and web software development from retail that banks can look to integrate today. You may choose to decrease the number of branches you have open and what services you offer, but this should readily depend on your overall strategy.
Target your messaging where you know your customers will be looking.
4. Differentiate your digital product
What makes your digital bank stand out? Highlight the products and services that will be most helpful to your targeted customer base (budgeting, savings accounts, TFSAs, etc.). Based on where your potential customers are looking for banking services (online, in the branch, on social, etc.), target your messaging where you know they’ll be looking.
Simple language is key (and a trained user experience writer could definitely help with this). Start by dropping the banking jargon and speak to your customers in an easy-to-understand way.
Make opening an online account as easy as possible. Many banks have seen the value in investing in a seamless digital onboarding experience, seeing the ease of entry as a major factor in retention. Once you have a potential customer interested, you don’t want them to decide otherwise because it was too difficult to sign up for your services.
Have a great mobile app. There’s an increasing amount of digital customers, especially ones who spend a lot of their time on their phones. According to the ‘Consumers and Mobile Financial Services 2016‘ report by the Federal Reserve Board, 43% of adults with mobile phones and bank accounts reported using mobile banking. So, make their banking app one they look forward to using.
The reality is that in 2019 being digital isn’t enough anymore. Your customers expect options on how to use a product or service and more and more they expect a strong seamless digital experience across all touchpoints.
aequilibrium offers omnichannel digital banking solutions that empower financial institutions to provide consistent, seamless customer experiences. Get in touch to begin your digital banking transformation.