Digital transformation is (finally) a top priority for financial services firms today.
A 2019 BDO survey found 97% of financial services companies are working on digital transformation initiatives (e.g., upgrading data analytics, improving customer experiences).
Meanwhile, one in five organizations polled said transforming digitally was their primary business goal in the coming years, with many noting the “rapidly changing financial services landscape” as the main driver behind their digital modernization efforts.
Specifically, many financial advisors, health insurance companies, investment banking firms, and other financial brands in the United States and elsewhere globally are updating their marketing programs to bolster acquisition, retention, and lifetime value.
It’s the technology these financial services companies onboard and utilize to drive said digital transformation initiatives, though, that differs from one brand to the next.
Legacy marketing technologies leaving many financial services firms dissatisfied
The status quo of using dated, legacy systems — master data management solutions, campaign management tools, “journey orchestration” platforms,” and the like — to generate new leads and customers, retain their business, and drive digital innovation across the company is clearly not working well for marketers at financial firms today.
Take large-scale banks and credit unions, for example. As The Financial Brand contributor Jason Henrichs noted, CMOs at these financial institutions are “encumbered by legacy cores face massive disadvantages compared to their competitors.”
Why? Because their outdated martech prevents their marketing teams from:
- Drilling down into granular customer insights to determine which high-value segments they should focus on (based on customer scores; behavioral, engagement, and demographic data; and other on-hand customer information)
- Messaging prospects and customers in a timely, cost-efficient manner due to IT reliance (i.e., assembling data and providing access to marketing, which takes days or weeks)
- Delivering bespoke experiences to target audiences in real time so they can ‘meet’ them where they are in their respective customer journeys with relevant messaging
The aforementioned BDO survey also discovered 82% of financial services companies cited improved operational inefficiency as one of their top long-term objectives.
Simply put, sticking with legacy martech — and, similarly, failing to onboard more proven, emerging technologies — will prevent this goal from coming to fruition for these brands.
How a CDP drives digital transformation for leading financial services brands
Forrester and Epsilon research showed U.S. financial services and insurance organizations will “spend more on digital marketing than any other industry between now and 2023.”
How much these brands spend is certainly a major factor in their transformation efforts.
But it’s equally important for these businesses to consider the type of technology they research and ultimately invest in — particularly for their marketing teams.
There is one popular marketing technology, in particular, that’s piqued the interest of brands across the financial services spectrum: from venture capital and private equity firms to life insurance and investment management companies.
More specifically, it’s tech that’s helped countless financial firms — including and especially their marketing departments — transform digitally: the customer data platform (CDP).
How exactly does a CDP help financial services businesses modernize their marketing? We’ve seen our customers in the industry benefit from our platform in several ways.
Asset management firm unifies first-party data and delivers more individualized experiences
Marketing success today starts and ends with real-time customer data unification.
A well-known asset management firm that dealt with disparate data living across the entire organization onboarded our CDP to sync all customer data in a central location.
With data for prospects and clients from all systems and channels now living in its CDP tenant, the financial services company is able to execute on a variety of use cases:
Recognize its website visitors.
By leveraging out-of-the-box connections and listeners in BlueConic (the latter of which collect behaviors and attributes of visitors in a non-intrusive, consented manner) and having data from those listeners sent directly to persistently updated customer profiles, the company in question is able to more effectively recognize individuals who visit its site.
This, in turn, helps them gain greater insights into these individuals’ distinct interests (e.g. which financial products — hedge funds, 401(k)s, etc. — they research while on the site).
Accelerate lead generation with on-site dialogues.
Based on the browsing behavior of known and anonymous visitors as well as other intricate data points stored in their always-up-to-date customer profiles, the financial services company is able to trigger tailored messages to its audience.
For instance, individuals who investigate the wealth management service section on its site receive individualized, on-site dialogues offering to chat with their team of experts about investment fund options or sharing additional resources.
Provide more engaging experiences to its audience.
This customer data collection enables the brand’s marketing team to be far more efficient with its targeted messaging and streamline its outreach to prospects and customers.
This freed-up time also gives the marketing org more time to focus on the ‘art’ side of their strategy — not just the science component (e.g., analytics, modeling) — and produce high-quality creative that better engages its audience in each customer lifecycle stage.
Private banking institution personalizes recommendations and reduces advertising waste
With first-party customer data unified in our pure-play CDP, a private banking institution that offers financial advising and investment management services to high-net-worth individuals has also been able to advance its customer engagement model:
Build greater affinity with its website visitors.
While tracking visitors’ blog visits, the financial services company has been able to test mid-article calls to action. These CTAs (the aforementioned dialogues) direct blog readers to product pages on the same topics as the posts they’ve read.
The goal of this site optimization is to create a more dynamic experience within blogs (on top of providing expertly crafted, thought-leadership content) and drive those visitors to provide an email address and become official leads.
Deliver highly correlated recommendations.
Aside from generating leads, the firm is also focused on promoting highly relevant, well-timed offers to visitors in the form of content and product recommendations. Similar to the blog CTAs, these dialogues aim to boost visitors’ engagement score.
The more engaged a lead is, the higher their score will rise, and the clearer it will be to the marketing team as to what specific follow-up messaging should be shared with the leads (e.g., email offers) to nurture and, ultimately, convert them into clients.
Automate its consent management efforts.
Instead of relying on a standalone consent management platform to persistently update contacts’ consent statuses — only to have to wait for those updates to sync with their activation systems — the firm entrusts BlueConic with is consent management.
With our CDP, the company’s marketing team can confidently utilize and activate customer data in its tenant, knowing all consent statuses are 100% accurate at all times.
Aside from helping the brand with compliance to data privacy measures like GDPR and CCPA, our consent management functionality streamlines a significant task that otherwise would be time- and labor-intensive for marketing and the business as a whole.
Digitally transforming your financial services company with a pure-play CDP
Numerous financial services firms understand the benefits of transforming digitally today and have at least rough plans in place to execute such a transformation project.
But as Gartner Director, Public Relations Laurence Goasduff noted, many of these firms “are still in very early or even immature stage of their digital transformation journey.”
In fact, 2019 Gartner research found just 12% of financial firms are considered “Digital Transformers”: Brands whose “practices and capabilities reflect competitive conditions” and have proven technologies to enable teams across their organizations.
Digital transformation takes time. But with a CDP as the main martech at the heart of your stack, you and your team at your can accelerate your transformation initiative and improve operational efficiency across the entire business — not just for marketing.
Discover how BlueConic can help your financial services firm transform digitally and better liberate your customer data by scheduling a demo with our team today.