Customer preferences, especially those of millennials, are a constantly moving target. Regardless of whether we’re talking about the retail sector or the financial services industry, consumers want to receive the right information on the right platform at the right time. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of technologies available to help marketers not only deliver personalized content to their customers, but also help to build stronger relationships. And as any good marketer will tell you, it’s easier to upsell to existing customers than it is to secure new customers.
One example of an industry that is leveraging new technologies to engage their customers is the financial services sector. Traditionally, banks have had a difficult time reaching millennials since they’ve grown up with more services available than any previous generation. There is an expectation that to properly work with millennials, banks need to understand their needs and provide them with content that serves their exact needs rather than simply as part of a general marketing campaign. Overloading millennials with a constant stream of useless information is a surefire way to lose them as a customer.
Progressive financial institutions are taking advantage of Internet-enabled devices that leverage the “Internet of Things” (IoT) such as mobile apps and digital signage to create brand-relevant, useful experiences. In fact, IDC Financial Insights predicts that retail banks will spend over $16 billion on digital information technology initiatives, and this spending will continue to increase. Here are some of the benefits that financial institutions can receive by leveraging the IoT to engage with millennials.
Personalized content leads to new revenue streams
Using IoT technology allows bankers to have a better understanding of how customers are using their products. For instance, a bank can provide personalized content that meets the customer’s specific needs based on their banking habits. By tailoring content and delivering it to customers on their platform of choice – via any device, channel or application – for faster time to market. This technology, known as Content as a Service (CaaS), enables companies to deliver content to any device via the Internet of Things, pull content from third parties, and upsell products.
The hidden benefit of leveraging CaaS is that it gives marketers the agility to tailor their marketing programs based on new and evolving IoT technologies. Unlike old-style CMS technology, which requires time- and resource-consuming integration whenever a new channel is added, CaaS allows marketers to quickly change processes and deliver personalized content without costly integration which increases efficiency and reduces operational costs.
By utilizing CaaS, banks can turn content into new revenues streams. Marketers can personalize content based on customer needs which allows them to upsell services by offering relevant and engaging content across any channel. In the consumer financial services market, banks can:
- pull content from third-party websites and partners into their own websites.
- guide location-based app users to local outlets and offer personalized new customer discounts via digital signage based on persona.
- deliver targeted brand or educational content in the form of text or video to smart devices.
The key is that banks can capitalize on consumer behavior and location to deliver completely connected end-to-end customer experiences and keep banking brands top of mind.
Delivering personalized content to customers on site
Beacons are wireless sensors that can be connected to the Internet. This IoT device can be used by banks in a number of new and innovative ways to deliver content. For example, let’s say you want your customers to know about a new mortgage program. Yesterday’s customer might want a brochure or to talk to a representative. But chances are your millennial customer wants to scan a QR code, or go to a URL, or receive an email. One way to leverage the IoT for this audience is to put a beacon on a sign so customers can download information. If that beacon knows the user already has a checking account, the banking application can autofill data from the customer account within a mortgage application, saving them time and hassle.
The bottom line is that Content as a Service is a disrupting trend in the content management space and is poised to benefit the consumer financial services industry. That’s because CaaS gives marketers the ability to deliver content to and from any IoT channel – wearables, smart home devices, digital signage, etc. – and present it instantly in the optimized format. Because of this flexibility, it has become the critical lynchpin in building and optimizing agile digital ecosystems.
Heidi Unruh is Vice President of marketing at e-Spirit. With over 20 years of experience in the B2B software market, she focuses on building brand awareness, product marketing, social media strategy, demand generation and sales readiness initiatives.