There exists a fine line for many consumers that separates what is experienced as charming insight into preferences and a chilling feeling of being overly surveilled. The access to the financial transaction trail we each leave with digital transactions provides primary financial institutions a vantage point to observe daily habits.
“Companies like Amazon, Netflix and Spotify have raised the bar in this broad category called personalization,” said Andy Hernandez, head of e-business at Regions.
“Consumers see a benefit to letting a company like Spotify keep track of what they’re listening to; it provides them a more customized experience,” said Hernandez, also a former digital banker of the year nominee.
That is why Regions is working on offering its customers more digital tools that can proactively help them make decisions or manage money.
“We’re looking at offering more tools around personalized money management advice; banks have access to so much data that we can be more personal and relevant,” Hernandez said.
He stressed any such tool would be strictly opt-in (its guided discovery tool is currently an opt-in service as well) because not all customers will be comfortable with these kind of services. But he noted that many customers who may not even be asking for such a digital service now will want one once they see the possibilities.
“I wasn’t asking Spotify to know me better, but they do and I love it,” Hernandez added. “Once consumers experience what’s possible, it then starts to become commonplace.”
Mercator Advisory Group contends that trick in automating the formulation of insights and making suggestions based on knowledge consisting of transaction details requires heightened diplomacy ingrained within customer interaction systems. Requesting and affirming consent to leverage an individual’s information is critical to maintaining the trust that exists at the core of a successful financial institution relationship with a consumer. With that trust developed and preserved, consumers will be more receptive to suggestions of alternative products and services.
Overview by Joseph Walent, Associate Director, Customer Interactions Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group
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