Changing the Traditional Perception of Banking: Building a Meaningful Connection with Clients

Timothy Allen

In the last few years, MENA’s banking and finance industry has gone through a wave of reform due to increased competition and rising consumer demands for personalized digital services. The banking landscape has become more dynamic, with an evolving pattern of high-profile mergers between the region’s smaller banks providing strong competition for the traditional powerhouses. Such competition includes innovative new fintech firms challenging banks to adopt several technological advancements to meet customer expectations.

There’s no doubt that technology and self-service will continue to expand through banking. Survival of the techiest increasingly involves technological abilities. However, the real opportunity for competition comes from low levels of customer satisfaction, their perception of digital banking, and lack of trust.

Research indicates that 50 % of consumers today interact with their bank through mobile apps or websites at least once a week, compared to 32 % two years ago. This is why consumers constantly look for safety, stability, and personalized experiences when using digital banking services. Building meaningful and trusted relationships in traditional banking may seem simple; however, the new wave of digital disruption has caused traditional banking to go out of style, making it even more challenging to change the conventional customer perception.

The question remains, how can banks improve their customers’ perceptions and re-establish credibility in them? Let’s take a look at three strategies that banks can use to accomplish this:

Build Meaningful Connections and go Beyond the Transactional Relationship

Humans, in general, like to be heard, and most of our daily decisions are influenced by emotions. Today, customers are reshaping the way financial institutions communicate, demanding digital human interactions. Yet, most digital banking apps are primarily transactional utility apps for checking balances, making payments, and transferring funds. As a result, banks struggle to establish a solid emotional bond with the consumer and therefore fail to build trust.

According to a study done by Accenture, 79% of consumers view their banking relationship as mainly transactional, and they’re constantly seeking advice from other outlets. For banks, offering personalized, contextual customer-focused experiences has become a necessity for survival. By putting the customer first and making them feel valued, banks can build meaningful relationships to foster loyalty and gain trust. Banks should treat every customer interaction as an opportunity to create value.

Be Where your Customers are and Create a Seamless Experience Across their Journey

Nine out of ten customers today expect an omnichannel experience with seamless service between communication channels. They want to be able to do anything on every channel and switch devices whenever they want. To improve brand visibility and create long-lasting, meaningful relationships, banks must be active on communications channels where customers spend their time.

Through an omnichannel communication strategy, you can personalize your customer engagement by communicating over multiple chat apps such as WhatsApp, voice, and mobile apps, guaranteeing to keep customers engaged at different touchpoints. To make this happen and always be there for your customers, you’ll need a comprehensive and connected customer service solution that can assist both your customers and your agents. The personalized experience is also ensured by continuing conversations seamlessly from one channel to another –without losing history or context –all through a single interface.

Infobip’s Conversations, an omnichannel cloud contact center solution, allows you to manage customer support from all angles through a single interface. It combines the simplicity and strength of chatbots, which can usually handle simple queries, and enables your agents to seamlessly take over more complex issues with access to the customer’s conversation history.

Utilize Data to Understand your Customers and Plot a Personalized Journey

Customers have grown accustomed to getting what they want when they want it and are increasingly drawn to banks and financial institutions that treat them as individuals throughout their journey.

It becomes much easier to drive revenue by communicating with your customers using the right messaging over the right platforms at the right time once you have equipped your team with comprehensive and accurate customer profiles.

Infobip’s Moments allows you to personalize each customer’s journey through tailored messaging using the channels of their choice. With real-time alerts, you can build and optimize efficient flows that reach customers precisely at the right points during their journey without thinking about channels or devices.

Bringing the Solutions Together

As retail banking becomes more competitive, differentiating digital banking will become more about building personalized emotional connections and less about features and functional breadth. Banks will need to adopt an approach that allows 24/7 accessibility and focuses on personalized interactions to effectively engineer digital interactions that create meaningful emotional bonds and build trust. You can start wowing your customers with exciting journeys on their preferred channels by integrating and leveraging the solutions listed above.

Apr 15th, 2021
4 min read

Timothy Allen