The traditional ways of segmenting customers into segments, LSMs (living standards measures) or archetypes has little use when describing the individualism and complexity of each consumer.
Customer Joe Bloggs might, for instance, use online banking on a Monday, visit a branch consultant on Tuesday, talk to us via Twitter on Wednesday, and use mobile app banking on Thursday. It is the modern bank’s job to pull together insights from the entire week, and use them to present Joe with a better and more tailored experience.
Having this single-view of the customer sets the foundation for providing personalised services. We start to see which account Joe uses most regularly (and make it more prominent on his smartphone app), or we notice his favourite amount to withdraw from an ATM (and automatically make that a “favourite” button).
He may want to make payments via EFT, or he may prefer sending a cash voucher to someone’s cellphone. But perhaps he wants to make a payment with a QR code reader, or one of the popular instant messaging or social media platforms. The number of options is growing all the time, and customers are accustomed to having the freedom to do things the way they want to – even the example of making a simple payment.
It is only with a relentless focus on design-led, intuitive customer experiences, that we can present these myriad of options to customers – without making the experience too complicated or clumsy. In order words, we’re able to achieve the goal of shrink-wrapping the entire ambit of financial services, and bringing them to the cellphone.
We can start creating those moments where things happen “as if by magic”. So when the GPS on Joe’s phone tells us that he’s accessing his banking app from an airport lounge, we alter the design and bring the latest forex prices to the fore.
As we know, customers have very different needs at different points-in-time. Knowing when Joe wants to do a quick balance check, or when he wants to submit an insurance claim, or when he wants to enquire about house prices and loan structures, means we can present relevant services to him at that moment.
By better understanding our customers and leveraging all the insights from their activity, we’re able to start crafting flexible products that “shape shift” to suit their needs. This is a long – and perhaps “never-ending” journey – but one that will ultimately lead to superior customer service.
Read more about this with design-led thinking in mind here.