Nearly since the launch of the iPhone in 2007, credit unions have been strategizing around digital banking. Questions around how to evolve their services to a mobile platform, and entice members to engage with digital banking, have been the focus of many strategic planning sessions over the last decade.
While member response to digital options has varied from credit union to credit union, the adoption of digital tools has, in many cases, been slower than anticipated. Without any major pain points to solve, members happy with their analog banking experiences were unmoved by digital options.
All that changed when COVID-19 made digital options the only option. With no choice but to engage with their credit union—and every other provider in their lives—through online and mobile channels, consumers finally got onboard. Now the question becomes, will they stay onboard?
It’s a heavily nuanced question that depends on many factors, not least of which is a member’s pre- and post-pandemic personas. If, for instance, the member is a digital native, comfortable using a smartphone to do everything from paying bills to starting her car, a slightly increased reliance on mobile banking during COVID-19 shutdowns was likely a non-event.
On the other hand, a technology hold-out who doesn’t use his smartphone for much more than calling, probably perceived the loss of branch transactions as disruptive and unwelcome.
As credit unions dive into the question of members’ willingness to remain digitally engaged, the ability to segment by persona will be hugely beneficial. So, too, will the ability to look at transaction data that can then be correlated to personas.
Data on dropped mobile transactions, for instance, can tell a credit union much about the mobile banking features that may need to be refined and/or accompanied by some education. How many remote deposit capture transactions were initiated but never completed? What percentage of those failed deposits belongs to the “technology hold-out” segment?
Taking the inquiry a step further, how many of those failed deposits were followed by an ATM deposit or drive-up window deposit? And then, how do those numbers align with the various member personas the credit union has identified?
With persona-level insight, credit union leaders can begin to craft highly personalized outreach strategies around keeping members engaged in digital channels. Because the message will be super relevant to individual members, the effectiveness of that outreach is likely to be high (as is the ROI of the effort).
Multiple studies have shown members who engage with their financial institutions digitally are happier and more loyal than their exclusively brick-and-mortar counterparts. Although some members may have been forced into adopting digital tools they otherwise wouldn’t have, the circumstance opens up brand new possibilities for the pursuit of their financial goals.
Credit unions that leverage insights from the data trails left by these digital newcomers will be in an excellent position to show them precisely how digital can make an already good relationship great.