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10/09/2016

The bank of 2020 Part 1

 

In today’s consumer-centric, demand-driven society, it’s not about what a business owns but the life experiences that it can offer. What does that mean for banks in the not too distant future? How can they deliver truly customer centric user experiences that not only help and advise their customers, but keep up with technology change.

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The standard platform slide

 

The biggest car company doesn’t own any cars, the biggest accommodation provider doesn’t own any hotels, the biggest content provider creates none of it’s own content, and the biggest retailer has no stores or stock. You’ve heard it all before. Yawn.

But what we have learned from all of these platforms is that they have leveraged the power of technology and data to change these industries forever.

Banking hasn’t undergone the same revolution. But it’s finally starting to catch up.

it’s not about what a business owns but the life experiences that it can offer Click To Tweet

 

Changing it up

We’ve seen how certain industries have had to adapt to a shifting customer mindset. The music industry has undergone some pretty dramatic changes, from vinyl to cassette, compact discs to MP3, iTunes to Spotify. Customers have gone from wanting to physically own music to storing it digitally to simply having access to the music space.

Likewise, the publishing landscape has transformed massively from the days of paperbacks and hardbacks, with ebooks, self-publishing and online retailers changing the game for all the players.

So what has this meant for contributors to these industries? Well, many artists now make their money through tours or merchandise. And some authors opt to sell books on a chapter-by-chapter basis. It’s all about keeping up with customer demand, whatever it takes.

The same mind-shift is required for contributors to the financial industry.

 

Jurassic Banks

David Brear likens traditional banks to dinosaurs. He says that the “too big to fail” argument didn’t work for our prehistoric friends, nor will it for those lumbering institutions that fail to adapt to a changing environment. Therefore only the ones that evolve with consumers’ habits, those “crocodiles” of banks, can expect to grow their user base in 202o.

When we say “evolve”, we don’t just mean baby steps. Because we’ve all seen what happens as a result of half-baked innovation attempts and it ain’t pretty. “Internet banking” was simply the paper experience converted into HTML. “Mobile banking” was squashed-up 20th-century systems onto 21st-century tech.

Which in fairness, is something that until relatively recently, customers have widely accepted.

Because as Chris Gledhill rightly observes, although many of them remember a time before smartphones, when they had to memorise phone numbers, buy CDs from a shop and use actual maps for directions, they can’t remember a time before banking. That’s why they take financial constructs, from loans to ledgers, as immovable objects. They’re centuries old and therefore set in stone, right?

Wrong. As you’ll know by now, banking is more flexible than previously imagined and certain companies have opened up customers’ eyes to the massive opportunities out there. For traditional banks, this means that meeting basic needs with baby evolutionary steps is no longer enough. Your customers have wised up and they aren’t afraid to switch to a financial provider that will go beyond all expectations.

 

The fight in on

“The industry has a fight on its hands. To win, banks will have to beat newcomers at their own game, delivering intuitive and emotionally rich customer experiences…and need to capitalize fully on their biggest advantages, data and access to the customer”

– MCKINSEY GLOBAL BANKING ANNUAL REVIEW 2015

 

In a piece about the consumer’s role in banking, Gemma Godfrey highlights some interesting stats:

  • ¾ of the global workforce in the next 10 years will be made up of millennials.
  • ¾ of millennials would be more excited about receiving a financial product from a technology provider like Google than their bank.
  • ¾ of millennials would rather go to the dentist than listen to their bank.

If the majority of a bank’s customer base is made up of millennials, who are excited by tech and frustrated by their current banking experience, doesn’t this scream “opportunity” to you?

 

Summary

It’s time to stop thinking like the bank of 2010, i.e. focused on monetary transactions, bank balances and pushing generic products.

Instead, start thinking like the bank of 2020, who will be focused on delivering beautiful user experiences through customer behaviour, access to data and 3rd party integrations.

The time is now.

 

In ‘Part 2’ we discuss how traditional banks and financial institutions can adapt and keep abreast with advancements in innovation and technology. Do they try and build their own products and services even though they are hampered by technology, culture, cost etc.? Or do they start fresh with a brand new platform that is open to integration from a host of 3rd party value providers?

 

Interested? Get in touch for a demo and see how you can change the way you can deliver your banking experiences.

 

I am Head of Marketing at Leveris. I write about the value of technology and data in financial services and how they are changing the way people use and manage money.

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