4 Steps to Improved Banking Customer Relationships

The responsibility for customer engagement is a new thing in business, often associated with uncertain objectives and unknown outcomes. The vision can be blurred. If you’re in banking marketing, CX or customer service then it’s your job to change all that. Bring your customers into focus, move from a place of uncertainty to a place where your business is unified in its ambitions and actions to deliver a truly personalised and consistent experience for customers because, simply, that’s what they want.

And contrary to popular opinion, you don’t need a huge team with endless resources. While the latest technology is important, it’s not just about that. All you need to get started quickly and easily is a good plan. You just need to take it step-by-step. Here’s how you can focus on customer engagement and see value for your bank and your customers, in 4 steps in 8 weeks.

Step 1 – Discovery

Time Plan: Week 1 – 2

Discovery is the process of understanding your bank, establishing a baseline view of what you need and want to change. It’s about identifying that destination, aligning it to your business strategy and objectives.

Start by building an understanding of where you are today, asking yourself some questions (and honestly answering them). What are the current obstacles to establishing your customer engagement strategy? What do you already know about your customers? Who are your key stakeholders across the business who you need to invite to and keep at the party?

Step 2 – Scope Setting

Time Plan: Week 3

There’s a lot to think about when you’re building your customer engagement strategy, but take it step-by-step and everything will fall into place easily and quickly. The key is to not try to do everything at once.

Simple things like deciding what ‘good’ looks like, agreeing the drivers behind customer engagement and knowing how to measure success will help the project run smoothly. Once you start to understand the experience your customers want with your brand you can start to deliver it. At this stage the key is you need to focus on your customers’ actual journey in real-time. How do customers really interact? What are their real needs? (How? See Customer Engagement, With Interest Guide)

Step 3 – Deploy & Optimise

Time Plan: Week 4 – 6

At this step, you’ll have selected a technology solution and you’ll be starting to use it. You should select one which is so easy to use that your team won’t need to be code-loving geeks or technology experts – so it can be deployed and used by anyone in the business. So it’s time to identify and schedule all the technical requirements for the activities agreed in the previous Scope Setting phase.

This is the plumbing part of your customer engagement strategy – making sure everything connects, works and doesn’t leak. Take the time to switch on and test new channels progressively, you don’t need to do it all at once. You’ll be personalising touchpoints and generating engagement data at this stage, so make sure you’ve factored in time to analyse.

Step 4  – Customer Value

Time Plan: Week 7-8

The work you put into Steps 1 to 3 pays back now. You’ve been tracking against agreed success criteria and you’ll now be able to demonstrate to the business that the investment has been worthwhile (plus you’ll look like a customer engagement rock star). But customer engagement doesn’t stop here. In many respects, you’re just getting started. Our 4-step process is simply a launch pad for building customer relationships into the future, “into infinity and beyond…”

What next? Your evolving journey to more meaningful customer relationships

New customer insight will help you establish more customer- centric processes and see lasting customer value. Your business will adapt, adjust, change, to meet customer needs and provide a more personalised, relevant and ongoing conversation.

You’ll uncover Customer Champions who will make sure the business responds to process changes in the way it should. As your business starts to see the value of customer engagement, you’ll start to organise your business in a more customer centric way.

You’ll be moving beyond technology now. Instead of integrating and supporting the technology as you did in the previous step, the technology will now be supporting you, helping orchestrate every customer interaction throughout the journey. So make sure you’ve selected a solution that is scalable and will grow with you.

You’ll be learning to act and respond in real time to the data, so use the technology to make the right, insight-driven decisions appropriate for each customer. If you’ve picked the right technology it will automatically take action and initiate the right customer conversation at the right time. But don’t think of this as an end point. Customer engagement is dynamic – think of it as a constant ongoing cycle of improvement and proliferation.

Customer Engagement for banking, with interest.

Next Blog: The Big 6 Must Do’s For Banking Customer Engagement