Annie has an account in Bank X.
She relocated to another country and wanted to update her contact details with the bank, but due to lack of time and long call queues, she couldn’t do it.
At the end of every month, the bank was still delivering letters and updates on her old contact details which led to communication gaps between Annie and her bank.
The ultimate outcome of all this was Annie’s frustration which led to an account closure with bank X and opening of new account in bank Y which was providing lucrative offers on joining.
What went wrong here?
Was Annie a less loyal customer to bank X or did bank X didn’t take much care of Annie?
Well, the answer to this question is simple. Lack of an interaction mechanism between the bank and Annie was the much possible reason for the poor experience.
Though improving customer experience has been a major goal in banks for several years, they still face challenges when it comes to delivering timely communications. As the banking industry is information intensive, delivering compelling communications in the form of documents, statements, policies, letters, notifications, & correspondence is a must. But with the proliferation of new communication channels like web, mobile, social media, SMS, etc., the ability to deliver relevant and consistent communications has become tough.
Customers these days are less loyal and more nomadic when it comes to making a purchase. They demand seamless & contextual experiences that are secure and immediate. They want their service providers to have a consolidated view of their transaction details with them. Disjointed communication efforts may leave your customer experience in a pothole where the customers might have the impression of you approaching them just for cross-selling and up-selling new offerings rather than understanding their actual requirements. Thus, banks must start reviving their communication strategies by focusing on a more outside-in approach and understanding their customer requirement at the same time. Under this approach, a bank rather than pushing their own products and services tries to understand the customer pain points and deliver services based on their customer needs.
Here are 3 important hurdles that banks face while shifting to an outside-in customer communications approach:
• Identifying the basic hurdle is one of the biggest challenges for banks these days. As banks must service customers via different channels, they have overtime created multiple applications which work in silos. As a result, these applications are not synchronized that ultimately affects the customer experience. What becomes more challenging is the lack of a centralized communication strategy that bogs down the capability of banks to deliver consistency across channels. All this results in disjointed customer communication efforts that are not personalized and a threat to your outside-in customer communications approach.
• The second hurdle banks face is in accessing customer’s data from different sources. Banks have been facing challenges when it comes to mapping customer’s data to their current needs. It is necessary for the banks to understand the buying behaviour of their customers at each level by mapping the customer’s journey through different tools. Though the traditional banking strategy used to revolve around the inside – out approach where the customers used to opt for the only services that were provided by the bank. But, with the market being driven through customers, the power is now in the hands of customers. By adopting an outside-in approach banks can cater to the customers need in a more proactive fashion.
• Lack of agile technology is one of the major hurdles banks face while adopting an outside-in approach. This often happens due to the outdated or legacy platforms that hold back the organizations from innovating. To achieve consistency and innovation in customer communication efforts, it becomes necessary for the banks to adopt a technology that enhances their capability to deliver communications on multiple channels in a robust way.
These were a few of the hurdles that banks face while switching to an outside-in approach. Remember, your customers should see your bank as a trusted ally rather than an organization that wants to improve its business opportunities. The secret to delivering great customer experience often stretches beyond the efforts of serving them as per their needs.