Agile, customer-focused fintechs have disrupted the financial services industry in many ways forcing FSI leaders to take note.

By offering innovative and frictionless financial experiences in a sector, which has historically been defined by the opposite, the insurgents are setting a new competitive benchmark.

  • Richard Wheeler, Adcloud Specialist at Adobe will be discussing the research during a live webinar presented by Which-50 on October 19th. Register for the webinar here.

Now, new research from Adobe suggests that incumbents are looking to respond with a renewed customer focus, but may be ill-equipped to do so fully. In fact many executives in FSI underestimate the requirement for — and impact of — great content on their customers.

However, some leaders have emerged, and are demonstrating an understanding of the importance of content and an integrated technology stack, according to the research.

According to Adobe’s 2018 Digital Trends in Financial Services report, the financial services sector has shifted its attention to customer experience and the customer journey — more so than most sectors.

Twenty-eight per cent of the FSI companies surveyed ranked optimising the customer experience as “the single most exciting opportunity” they had this year. That’s a higher mark than the 18 per cent average across all sectors, according to the report.

The study found that FSI leaders believe the next most exciting 2018 opportunities for the financial services industry will be provided by data-driven marketing focused on the individual (23 per cent), and by using marketing automation to increase efficiency and yield (12 per cent). Again, both were higher than the average scores across all other sectors (15 per cent and 8 per cent, respectively), suggesting that the financial services industry has become more focused on the customer and ways to reach them efficiently.

The sector also sees customer experience and service as a way of standing out. Customer experience (36 per cent) and customer service (19 per cent) were the top two responses for how companies in the sector will seek to differentiate themselves from competitors. Both customer-focused opportunities outranked product/service innovation and quality as the best ways to create an advantage.

Industry leaders know the value of content

Despite the customer imperative, the sector as a whole isn’t as inclined as others to focus on content. Just seven per cent of financial services companies cited “creating content for digital experiences” as their top opportunity — less than half the average mark of 15 per cent.

“Great content, across formats ranging from email and social, to web site copy and display advertising, is essential for powering the digital customer experience, though the chart suggests that [financial services companies] are, first and foremost, preoccupied with the bigger CX picture,” according to the report.

The authors write that this preoccupation is not shared by leaders within the industry, who have moved on to creating content to “power digital experiences”.

“Unlike their peers in other sectors who set up advanced CX programs many years ago, [financial services companies] have yet to learn the demands a good CX journey has on content. Only those who grasp the full requirements understand the need to produce content at scale and at speed.”

With huge quantities of customer data and the potential to identify customers and tailor personalised content, financial services companies are missing out on a significant opportunity to engage customers, according to the report.

  • Richard Wheeler, Adcloud Specialist at Adobe will be discussing the research during a live webinar presented by Which-50 on October 19th. Register for the webinar here.

About the author

Joseph Brookes is a writer for the Which-50 Digital Intelligence Unit, of which Adobe is a corporate member. Our members provide their insights and expertise for the benefit of the Which-50 community. Membership fees apply.

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