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Communication in banking: how to turn ordinary customers into brand advocates. Tips from Infobip

In times of digital transformation of services and services, it is not enough for banks to be just reliable. Users want to entrust their money to convenient, fast institutions that constantly take care of improving the customer experience.

Svetlana Budashova, an expert on the implementation of omnichannel solutions at Infobip, told how banks can build online communication with customers and what techniques will help turn an ordinary audience into brand advocates.

The digitalization of most services and services that millions of people use every day has accelerated due to the pandemic. Along with the request for the maximum presence of the brand online came higher requirements for interaction with users.

And this is not a subjective impression: our research in 2020 showed what customers expected from brands:

  • 20% change the brand due to the quality of communication and unsatisfactory level of communication;
  • 35% are more willing to communicate with the brand through digital communication channels;
  • 51% believe that brand communication with customers has become more important than ever.

Competition in the market is growing, new generations of users are choosing banks focused on active integration and development in the digital space. The business strives to meet new demands — actively integrates technologies into all areas of activity. Digital transformation of banking brings great advantages to business, for example, cost optimization, quick and convenient profit extraction, development of new market niches.

The same is true in the banking sector – you can't keep up with either business or customer requests. It is necessary to keep up with technological trends or prepare for the loss of users.

Services in a smartphone quickly find fans: 

  • the average smartphone owner uses 10 apps a day and 30 apps monthly;
  • 49% of people open programs more than 11 times a day;
  • 21% of millennials open the program more than 50 times a day.

One of the biggest transformations of the banking sector in terms of technology is the introduction of conversational banking services. This format allows financial providers to provide customers with quick and easy access to support services, making each request more personalized. This translates the communication of the institution with the client to a qualitatively different level. Modernizing customer communication through digital channels, automation and cloud technologies is a proven way to provide fast personalized banking services. These digital attributes have become key factors that encourage customers to trust and remain loyal to the brand. In conditions of rapid market growth and fierce competition, each brand lawyer is very valuable, so taking care of UX in time means taking care of the future of your business.

Few people want to deal with low-quality service just because they are used to the brand. There are many competitors and they offer to get the same services faster, better, more convenient. Our survey of millennials (24-40 years old) showed that these people want to get answers to questions quickly (in less than 10 minutes). The vast majority (71% of respondents) are disappointed if their banking experience is impersonal. The same number of respondents will readily recommend a brand if they like the communication and the customer experience is positive.

From this we see that the bank must take care of the proper tools and technologies to improve the UX. Otherwise, he is waiting for high rates of customer churn and low loyalty of saved users.

To prevent this from happening, the bank needs to know a number of indicators in order to build communication correctly. One of the key points concerns information channels: which of them are suitable for your customers, which format of interaction will be convenient? Will it be a messenger, email, push notification, phone calls, SMS? Or all at once? 

For example, 68% of customers consider WhatsApp to be the best channel for interacting with business. Using all the features of this platform (instant multimedia messages, automated chatbot) will significantly reduce the load on your call center, give employees time and opportunity to deal with atypical situations.

Create a unified multi-channel user database. This will allow you to segment clients to discover behaviors and patterns that will help you channel communication correctly.

Here is an approximate list of questions that will help in the formation of such a database:

  • What is the stage of the client's life?
  • How long have you been cooperating?
  • What products or services has he bought from you before?
  • What is his monthly income?
  • What are his financial goals?
  • Is he in the credit risk zone or does he make his payments on time?
  • What products has the customer viewed on your website/app?

A deep understanding of the client and awareness of the details of his financial situation will make it possible to understand which messages will be relevant and effective right now.

When you have identified the main platforms for interaction with the client, it's time to build closer cooperation. First of all, ensure the smooth operation of the user chat so that the client does not need to visit the local branch.

Use multimedia functions to send documents and take care of the possibility of digital signature. Media message templates in messengers allow you to share invoices, electronic policies and electronic receipts. Simplify the process of paying debts and signing documents. Ensure easy and secure chat communication from start to finish. A well-configured digital workflow saves time, money and nerves for all participants in the process.

Provide easy access to videos with explanations of basic functions and the start of work with the application and personal account.

Be available to potential customers when they are at the research stage. With the help of chatbots, you can provide all the answers to frequently asked questions and requests for products or services at any time. In particular, do not forget about congratulatory messages in the selected messengers with a short list of the main offers. Give a potential client the space to explore your bank, pay attention to the wishes and support at every step.

Send instructional videos for review. This is a great way to take advantage of the multimedia features of messengers. The video will help avoid lengthy calls and explanations on mortgage rates, various types of loans, credit cards and bills. If the client needs additional information, it can be easily transferred to a live agent.

Based on the collected data, offer the client new services or those that may be useful to him at this stage. By examining the user's behavior in the application, you can determine which credit cards, loans, credit lines and other services will interest the user. Send messages about which pre-approved loans the client can apply for. This will help you increase the cost of your services and lead to more active customer engagement. Offer them an easy way to renew insurance – this is an effective method of retaining users. Send a personalized message when the contract expires and ask if they are interested in extending insurance with you. When they confirm the action, they can be passed to the agent to complete the process. Remind your customers about the renewal of contracts, they will definitely appreciate such a manifestation of care.

Provide easy access to the company's live agent. Often clients need more extensive advice on their request or help in solving atypical problems. Chat with an employee in the same messenger or the possibility of a call saves customers from having to switch channels or devices to get quality service. Problems are solved faster, and interaction is much more efficient.

When the issues are resolved, ask the client for his opinion on the quality of the service provided. With the help of such surveys, you can quickly identify problems in your work and serve customers more efficiently. And the user who has been listened to will be more loyal to the brand and will probably recommend it to others.

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Коммуникация в сфере банковского обслуживания действительно играет ключевую роль, особенно в условиях цифровой трансформации.