I moderated a panel and joined as a panelist too in a recent event that focused on the financial services/banking industry. In particular, we discussed how one could take the customer journey base to digital and in effect how the resulting customer experience would look like in a virtual world. It was an interesting conversation to say the least.
In the line of work we do, designing customer journey maps or going through the exercise of taking a step back and thinking of all those customer touchpoints that your customer go through to get your product and service I must say is the most critical baseline you can create in starting your transformation journey. The customer journey map is, of course, unique to each persona as each persona or segment will have a different experience. The map that results out of this exercise will allow the organization to then assess where are the delight points – or similarly the points that do not delight – paving the way to see opportunities to transform.
Of particular interest in the panel was the focus on Gen Z and millennials as the growing and increasing segment of customers digital banks are looking at. Sure, these are digital natives who essentially grew up with screens (especially the Gen Z ones) and therefore the experience they expect is nothing short of seamless, quick and straightforward. It becomes a challenge when there are service fees in between just because your digital native customer is banking with bank A and the retail merchant in your marketplace is banking with bank B.
Also, this growing segment of digital natives mostly interact and engage online and would prefer an online conversation rather than a face-to-face one, especially when opening a bank account for example. In this case, there is so much data that can be captured and using prescriptive and predictive analytics, banks can then effectively target these segments with relevant campaigns, products and services.
Conversely, one of the panelists from a local bank shared that it is not just these digital natives that are considered to be a growing segment in their case, but broadly people who are in different life stages or journeys, for that matter. This goes beyond the typical demographics we know of as this focuses on different life stages, such as marriage, education, retirement, business, career, and so on and so forth. These stages, no matter the age or gender, can be targeted with specific products and services that may not necessarily be experienced online or digitally. The perspective in this case is that the digital experience is considered to be subjective – a baby boomer individual, for example, may find more value in discussing his requirements face-to-face with a bank account officer compared to a digital native who may be willing to open an account by interacting with a chatbot.
Culture and behavior still play a big role in designing customer journey maps and eventually will dictate how your customer experience would look like. In the end, it will be a curated and personalized type of experience unique to each individual. Strategy and technology are other areas that would contribute in ensuring that your overall customer experience remains optimal to your target customers.
Kay Calpo Lugtu is the chief operating officer of Hungry Workhorse, a digital and culture transformation firm. Her advocacies include nation-building, sustainability education and financial literacy. The author may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org