How to improve communication with banking customers using Viber Business Messages

Senior Content Marketing Specialist

Tomislav Krevzelj

Senior Content Marketing Specialist

The best way for banks to improve communication with their clients is to engage directly with them over a channel they want to use. The simplest way to do this is to identify what the most popular channels are.

HALKBANK Belgrade realized that Viber was the most popular chat app in Serbia. They were already using SMS to communicate with their clients, but there were a few limitations.

There’s plenty you can say in 160 characters. It’s more than enough to tell a client “Your €1500 transaction was a success”, for example. But if you want to tell a client about a life-changing new product you’ve developed, then it may be a bit limiting and less than cost-effective.

To find out more about how Viber Business Messages improved communication with clients, we spoke with Jovan Milasinovic, Head of Alternative Distribution Channels Development Department at HALKBANK Belgrade.

Improving communication with banking clients

First, what does it mean to “improve customer communication”?

HALKBANK noticed their client base was moving from SMS to chat apps for their daily communication.

Since Viber was the channel their clients were using, “we had to be there” says Jovan.

“In banking, it’s important to follow customer needs and customer behavior. Specifically considering that Viber as a chat app is something that clients use daily, HALBANK wanted to make their communication channel routine in comparison to what clients’ daily activities are”, Jovan explains. Viber Business Messages offers more than SMS for customer communication, namely:

  • Higher character counts
  • Delivery and seen reports
  • Rich media features
  • Links

These added functionalities greatly increased marketing and sales opportunities for HALKBANK.

Using Viber Business Messages to communicate with clients lets HALKBANK “go more in-depth with descriptions, media [with] multimedia promotions to help clients get acquainted and introduced to products,” Jovan said.

How Viber improved communication for the bank

“Adding Viber Business Messages was simple thanks to clear, detailed instructions and documentation resulting in very swift implementation,” according to Jovan.

The main reasons were cost “as well as following statuses and customer behavior”.

According to Jovan, the positive results since implementing Viber Business Messages include “between 70-80% of clients have successful delivery of payment transactions via Viber.”

This because the bank was “mostly focused on [the] migration of payment notifications that get delivered to clients from traditional channels, to Viber.”

How Viber Business Messages improved communication for the bank’s clients

“It hasn’t only been beneficial from the bank’s side,” Jovan says, “customers also enjoy the benefits of using Viber.”

This is because the experience of using Viber to communicate with their bank is more natural to their clients.

It’s the same channel popularly used to communicate daily with their friends and family.

And more than convenience, there’s also the benefit of more information presented in ways that are easy to understand.

Thanks to the rich media capabilities, such as video via Viber Business Messages, HALKBANK can clearly communicate exactly how products can be used to improve their clients’ lives. Jovan adds that “the feedback from the clients is that the communication about products and services is more detailed.”

Benefits of using Viber Business Messages as a channel

Being present on the same channel their customers were using presented many benefits to HALKBANK.


First, there’s the issue of trust.

The threat of smishing campaigns (where malicious actors can target bank users and their sensitive data via SMS) is eliminated thanks to Viber’s blue check mark.

This mark acts as a certificate of authenticity that is given only to verified users, and helps improve trust and engagement.

Improved engagement

Next, there was the quality of the engagement.

Halkbank used to rely on SMS as an engagement channel, but it had its limits as compared to Viber.

Specifically, when considering engagement, Viber Business Messages provides the bank with status reports.

This tells the bank not just how many messages were successfully delivered, but also read by their clients. Having this detailed information helps the bank measure engagement with a very high degree of accuracy.

Higher character counts

Another benefit for banks is the higher character count in messages compared to SMS.

Higher character counts allow for more information to be shared with clients, helping the bank provide better support to their clients.

And when higher character counts won’t help, rich media messaging will.

Rich media messaging

Including rich media was a massive hit among customers, since it presented a lot of information in a way that was clear to understand.

Now the bank could easily guide users through new products and services, or provide video assistance in using existing ones.

This helps adoption of new services to grow the client base, but also to boost bank app daily active users. Finally, there was the issue of improved cost.

Reduced cost compared to traditional channels

Of course, introducing a new channel to improve engagement only makes sense if its implementation is fast, easy – and affordable.

But not only did implementing Viber Business Messages tick those boxes – it also served to lower messaging costs compared to other channels.

As Jovan explained, “media messages and transactional messaging is decreasing costs compared to standard SMS.”


HALKBANK managed to improve engagement, increase new product and service uptake among clients, and reduce their messaging costs simply by adopting a channel that they knew was widely used among their customer base.

If your customer base is using Viber as their daily communication channel of choice – then why isn’t your business?

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May 19th, 2023
4 min read
Senior Content Marketing Specialist

Tomislav Krevzelj

Senior Content Marketing Specialist