How Financial Services Brands Can Drive Stronger Engagement and Retention
The financial services industry has seen major changes in the marketplace, especially when it comes to customer expectations. Traditional banks and firms are facing the disruptive threat of more nimble FinTech brands with innovative, focused products, while those new brands struggle to establish reputations as safe, reliable businesses, something which offers customers reassurance and security. All companies in the space are looking to find ways to balance consumers’ want for personalized experiences with a need for privacy, something that’s only heightened by increasing government regulations.
In order to help financial services firms better understand and engage their consumers, we put together Banking on the Customer Journey: 2022 Financial Services Insights. In this report, we analyzed data from four different sources:
A Wakefield Research marketer survey
A Wakefield Research consumer survey
Braze data from over 200 financial services brand, anonymized and aggregated
Exclusive insights from CACI
What we found is consumers who engage with financial services brands are looking for relevant, personalized experiences—that is, the same experience they’ve come to appreciate from brands in other industries. Let’s take a deeper look at what that means and how your brand can achieve it.
Customer Engagement in the Financial Service Industry
Consumers want seamless, cohesive experiences across every channel they’re on—and financial services brands are struggling to provide that today. According to the Wakefield Research survey, 17% of financial brands surveyed only use one communication channel per campaign, with only 28% delivering fully-unified campaigns across all channels.
To improve the customer experience—and drive more revenue—financial services brands should adopt a cross-channel approach. But not all channels are created equal for all messages. When surveyed, 49% of consumers ranked email as the most preferred channel for receiving general communication, with 38% ranking email as the preferred channel for urgent communications. For SMS, 25% of users subscribe to transactional when prompted, with 19% saying they subscribe to promotional SMS when prompted. By sending the right message on the right channel, financial services brands can better serve their customers.
The Benefits of Cross-Channel
When FinServ businesses can speak to their customers more effectively, they build stronger relationships that drive retention, growth, and revenue
Based on the data we found in our report, each additional channel added to a given brand’s marketing mix results in a 3X increase in sessions per user and an 87% increase in average user lifetime, as well as a 13% increase in three-month rolling retention and a 56% increase in eight-month rolling retention.
By taking on a strategy that combines both in-product (e.g. in-app messages) and out-of-product (e.g. SMS, email) experiences, brands can improve retention even further. A cross-channel approach can have up to a 9X impact on sessions per user and a 3X impact on average user lifetime. It can also drive a 50% increase on three-month rolling retention, and a 2.7X increase in eight-month rolling retention.
Consumers today have gotten used to engaging with brands across an array of different devices and platforms and channels. To provide an experience across all of those touchpoints that feels valuable, meaningful, and cohesive to the individual customers, financial services brands need to find ways to serve up unified messaging. For more findings on how a cross-channel strategy can serve your brand, check out our guide Banking on the Customer Journey: 2022 Financial Services Insights.