For many banks the thought of integrating modern technologies feels like a minefield. Claudia Hauser, EMEA financial services lead at Microsoft, believes that financial institutions need to proactively embrace technological innovation. As the market becomes more transparent, customers are using online price-comparison services to shop around. The digital revolution has also given customers the option to seek other businesses if their current providers do not offer services on multiple channels. Banks are creating user-centric experiences for customers to differentiate each other from the competition (smartbanking solutions). However, this is still a challenge for most financial institutions. A recent survey reported that 53% of millennials in the U.S. do not see any difference between banks. Anytime, anywhere banking is essential, but it is also the norm.
There is a lack of “human touch” between banks and their customers, and this is one of the reasons why people only visit a branch when they have to, and their relationship to banks is mostly transactional. Fintech companies like Venmo and Sqaure Cash are serious competition for banks. These platforms mimic the natural flow of people when it comes to sending money, which banks are unable to do because of legal regulations and obsolete IT structures. However, these fintech companies can only provide bank-like services but not a complete holistic financial model.
Banks can offer great help to their customers by providing personalized feedback based on their spending habits and offer smartbanking tools. In today’s technologically oriented culture, the opportunities for banks to integrate this information are endless. Banks are in the enviable position to know every financial touchpoint of their customers, from where they prefer to shop to their credit capacity.
What will the financial world look like in fifty years? Everything will change, except human nature. (Or, nothing will really change.) The financial and banking sector is embracing the new opportunities of emerging technology. Data mining and machine learning platforms, and the rapidly developing world of artificial neural networks, are having significant impacts on the global financial world. Continue reading
Crowdcasting is the newest use of the crowd to change the paradigm of two important functions of business: innovation and customer relationship management.
Innovation is being moved from the realm of experts to the crowd via problem-solving platforms like Hero-X. Incentives include contests and other forms of interaction, including cash prices, and problems that range in complexity are presented to the group. This use of the crowd as a group of out-of-field experts has produced some innovative and quirky thinking on knotty problems. Unlike university and other expert-based methods of traditional problem solving, issues of intellectual property and royalties for this work are managed by participants trading off their ideas for a possible prize.
This type of crowdcasting works to find innovative solutions to both business problems and complex social problems. Businesses can bring a problem to the crowd, where groups of unusual and esoteric specialists can collaborate. Non-profits can bring the complexities of social change and social justice to individuals and groups who bring off-center and out of the box thinking to multi-faceted issues.
One of the benefits of the crowdcasting model is the open-source ethos of shared problem solving. With the understanding that unusual solutions can be shared across industries and communities, the ideas and work are regularly published for use by others, with their different problems to solve. Continue reading
Though the first companies to ‘go digital’ did so as far back as the 90s, many industries and individual businesses have been putting off their digital transformation for decades. In the vast majority of these cases, the original decision to hold off on digitizing was a wise one. The industry software wasn’t ready and there were a few too many unknowns for the comfort of older well-established businesses with customers who relied on them to keep things running smoothly.
However, times change as they always do and we’re not in the 90s world of hit-or-miss HTML websites or primitive database EMSs anymore. Business software, data analysis, internet technologies, and the overwhelming social move to online communities have significantly changed the playing field. Where it once was a good idea to stick with paperwork or old management systems, no you’d be a fool not to have a full-featured online presence and AI-assisted data analysis for everything from marketing to bug hunting. Whether you’ve started your digital transformation or are still slowly considering your options, it may help to see the full scope of what a completely digital company would have in their IT suite.
- Mobile App
- Industry EMS
- AI Data Analysis
- IoT Devices
- Cloud Documents and Backups
If there’s one asset that pulled companies of the 80s into the modern digital world, it’s the business website. As people’s lives become more and more about what they do online, having a website is in many cases better than having a brick-and-mortar venue because the potential ‘foot traffic’ is infinitely higher and often determined by the effectiveness of your SEO to catch people looking for your services in a search engine.
Home, About, Services, Contact
Original business websites could be almost anything but these days a format and a precedent have been set. People now understand the basic layout of almost all business websites and expect a few key elements. Home is your landing page and should showcase the business itself. About is your page where you tell the company’s history, share your goals, and possibly introduce a few team members. Services can also be Products and enumerates what you have to offer. Contact, of course, is a quick and easy way for customers to send you emails.
Live chat is all the rage these days and is being incorporated into company websites by businesses all over the world. If you don’t have a live chat integration yet, consider getting one. When your customers are able to contact you while browsing your website, communication is instant, as is your access to their conversion funnel. Continue reading