Your customers are banking on personalized services and content
How to use content personalization to compete with the disruptors
- Financial services companies are trying to compete with fintech disruptors by adopting tools such as chatbots and robo advisors—but tech is only half the story. What people really want is personalized service and human communication.
- Companies can meet this demand with content personalization, designing content marketing campaigns that address their clients’ most pressing concerns and connecting with them through online channels.
- Respecting privacy and confidentiality is critical for financial services companies when delivering personalized service to customer. By producing content backed by data-driven research, you can create content suited for all needs and audiences without compromising on compliance.
Financial services companies have found themselves in a bind. They’re not having the same level of interaction with customers that they’re used to. More and more clients are moving over to the fintech firms that are disrupting the industry.
It’s worth asking why. After all, legacy companies still have well-designed websites; they still have online platforms and channels where they promote their services to customers; they’re still developing technology that’s transforming the once in-person banking. So why are they being negatively affected by the rapid shift to digital-only services, and what can they do about it?
The disruptors next door
One of the challenges is that financial services can seem aloof and impersonal. For years, marketing and promotional campaigns have been outmoded: they try to sell a broad selection of cure-alls through one-sided channels to a vast, vaguely-defined customer base. It’s only natural that at some point, people start tuning them out and looking for alternatives.
As you know, fintech’s claim to fame is its innovative, automated solutions. These companies are adept at honing in on specific pain points and creating amazing apps and platforms to address them. The services they provide feel so personalized and intuitive that traditional institutions seem cumbersome by comparison.
To compete with this, many legacy companies are implementing their own automated solutions. Chatbots handle customer service inquiries, and the more advanced models can use natural language processing for more authentic interactions. Robo advisors recommend investments to clients by analyzing their assets and market opportunities.
They use technology to really understand their clients, then speak to their unique pain points and priorities by providing advice that’s tailored to fit.
It’s great to see companies being proactive in adopting tech—but this doesn’t really get to to the root of the problem. Fintech disruptors don’t just provide customers with fast tools and services. They use technology to really understand their clients, then speak to their unique pain points and priorities by providing advice that’s tailored to fit.
That’s what customers want. It’s about delivering real insights to real individuals to solve real needs.
Yesterday, your message was an ad. Today, it’s a conversation.
Many financial services companies still market to their customers through ads that don’t speak to specific audience segments. It’s time to stop interrupting your target audience with one-way communication, and start creating content that provides value to customers and sparks a conversation. That way, whenever they want financial advice, there’s a story waiting for them—one that’s relatable, actionable, and fun to read.
Technology is important, but communication is critical. Studies show that customers would still rather be served by real people than by chatbots, and that they find the generic nature and constraints of chatbots to be frustrating.
Still, if your company has implemented these tools, they can help inform the content you create. Whenever customers interact with a chatbot or a robo advisor, they’re providing critical insight into the common financial challenges and concerns facing them. This helps your company uncover themes and topics for your content campaigns, and it enables you to connect users with stories that will engage them, solve their pain, and personalize their experience of your brand.
Vancity, the largest community credit union in Canada, cites its online calculators as one of its best consumer intelligence tools: when people are already using a custom tool to figure out their loans and mortgages, they’re quite far down the decision-making funnel—and they’re also giving valuable intel. Now imagine how effective it is when they get to the end of their calculation and are given links to stories and videos curated especially for their situation?
You can deliver content personalization without crossing any lines.
You already have a direct line of communication with your customers. Each of these channels offers a valuable opportunity to reach out and connect them with your latest content.
Turn your website into your content capital.
The overwhelming majority of your clients interact with your company online. That’s why it’s essential for your website to be an easily-navigable content hub where people can explore stories by category—whether they’re dealing with stress, or preparing for personal or company milestones.
It’s also effective to provide content in a variety of formats, with different degrees of interactivity. Articles are a classic medium, but infographics and video can be simpler to digest. All of this makes for mass content personalization—designing content for a wide audience, but curating it as if it’s tailored to individual tastes depending on how someone interacts with your site.
Websites serve another key function as well: for companies like Vancity, who differentiate themselves from competitors with their community-focused brand values and local business initiatives, the homepage is their main touchpoint for conveying targeted messaging to consumers. They can show what they stand for, as well as what they offer.
The best way to promote your brand is to promote conversation
There’s a stereotype that financial institutions speak in impenetrable acronyms and insider jargon that others can’t make sense of. With content, you can make short work of that myth.
Even better, telling valuable, actionable stories helps customers to help themselves, which in turn helps companies. In effect, it catalyzes a virtuous cycle that empowers everyone.