Because innovation breeds differentiation, brands are eager to pursue constant change. Financial firms, in particular, continuously struggle to break free from the stale, stagnant strategies that plague this highly regulated space and prevent them from delivering personalized customer experiences. As financial institutions work to expand their reach and boost customer experience, many will recognize the overarching weight of customer analytics as it pertains to real-time efficiency.
Despite the slow pace of the financial space, banks and lenders are itching to speed ahead into unknown territory, as they understand that those companies which stand still too long are likely to fall behind the competition. Customer analytics, nevertheless, enables perpetual momentum, allowing firms to gain and apply prospect and customer insights to real-time processes. Ultimately, financial brands want to create seamless, omnichannel experiences that convey value with distinct relevancy. Consumers both desire and demand personalized marketing, sales, and service strategies, meaning banks better bring their A-game as they reconfigure their internal approaches.
By improving their analytical capabilities, financial firms can understand customer expectation and sentiment, tighten development processes, and dramatically improve operations. Here are three steps for adopting an advanced analytical approach in your organization.
1. Set Clear Goals
Becoming an organization that embraces advanced analytics to better understand customer needs requires clearly defining your organization’s customer goals, identifying which customers drive long-term loyalty, and understanding the drivers of attrition and cross-selling. When defining your organization’s analytical roadmap, your company must evaluate the effectiveness of the customer data, define the customer stages throughout the customer journey, and decipher how you intend to calculate customer profitability. Then, map each customer to individual households and estimate customer lifetime value.
2. Break Down Silos and Collect Insights From All Touchpoints
Financial institutions are historically impeded by conflicting priorities across silos. Product line investments and cost allocation models typically don’t support efforts to improve operational efficiency or the customer experience. And, incentives tend to tilt toward funding projects within silos. Additionally, many financial firms segment customers by product or credit score, not by customer attributes.
As such, financial institutions require an internal system that breaks down silos, employs feedback and insights from all touchpoints throughout the customer lifecycle in order to formulate the ideal 360-degree view of every customer, and incites the organization as a whole to work toward overarching customer experience goals. According to The Tower Group, this requires financial firms to first define their data keys, implement universal customer identifier, integrate data across channels, and then continuously gather data.
3. Look Through the Customer Lens
Financial institutions cannot very well bring real-time, efficient processes to fruition without examining customer data. A close look at the business through the customer lens will reveal which strategies add value to the overall experience, and which tactics may be wasting both time and money. This entails firms to transition from process improvements that are aimed at the masses, to process improvements that are specifically developed for targeted segments of their customer base.
Such deep analysis involves rigorous quantitative techniques combined with real customer interaction—surveys, ethnography, and focus groups—to identify new opportunities for clients to deepen relationships with the loyal, profitable customers they know best. By taking this customer-lens approach to every facet of customer strategy, financial firms can properly allocate their resources, follow the right opportunities, and ensure that they will realize the full revenue potential of their products, services, and relationships.
Emphasizing new customer analytics tactics not only emphasizes an institution’s dedication to improving and personalizing the customer experience, but also the eagerness to adopt a customer-first mentality. Consumers know that, without them, any and all companies will ultimately fail, for they hold all the cards. Financial firms that play their hand well and adopt advanced analytics, however, are bound to win both customer loyalty and trust.
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