Customers’ expectations of the brands they do business with are higher than ever.
In the 2017 Global Consumer Pulse Report, consulting group Accenture found that 48% of consumers expect special treatment for being a good customer. Failure to deliver against these expectations can have catastrophic consequences. Of those surveyed who had terminated their relationship with a business, one third said it was because that business failed to deliver on personalization. And only 22% believed the service they received was personalized to their needs or personal circumstances.
The banking industry is used to relying on the idea that people will stay with the same bank for life but this is no longer case.
The average adult in Zimbabwe has used the same checking account for about 5 years. Drastic economic changes aside, the financial impact of poor service is quite visible. This change is even more true for the millennial generation and these are the new target market for customers. You want them on board. Keep in mind that this is a generation that is all about research. Not only do they compare prices and services before making a decision but they also take reviews into account.
More than 8 out of 10 millennials are open to the idea of switching banks, given the motivation to do so. More than 50% of millennials abandon brands every year, with 25% of those doing so after a single bad experience. Give them three bad experiences and 82% in this age range will switch.
A continual loss of customers is far from inevitable and could be avoided if banks and other financial services companies seek out and exploit all possible differentiators that create positive equity. Among these, banks might invest in their brand through marketing, or extend their offerings to allow more flexibility for customers. They might invest more in some aspect of their technology to improve responsiveness or other parts of the customer experience. At the top of the list, though, must be adopting and exploring all aspects of personalization.
Personalization can start small. Simply dropping “Dear Sir/Madam” from letters in favor of “Dear Mrs. Moyo” can do wonders in terms of the impression it creates. “The bank is talking to me, about my circumstances,” is the immediate effect. Little things can go a long way, but much larger measures will be necessary to keep up with the competition and achieve the results cited above. Adopting enterprise technology such as the mGate and enabling customer profiling helps make adoption less time-consuming by automating omnichannel communications.