Modern Digital Banking: 6 Ways To Drive Engagement With Contextual Vouchers in 2021
Updated: Mar 12
The events of the past year have caused a monumental shift from physical to digital, rapidly increasing online customer adoption. Encouraged by lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, people all over the world formed new habits, shopping for all kinds of products and services digitally. For companies in any industry, extreme customer-centricity is becoming a top-priority to adapt to a post-pandemic world and keep up with changing demands for innovation, creativity, and technological aptitudes in an ever-competitive environment, like the banking and financial services.
Digital banking trends in 2021: automation, personalization, flawless UX, and empathy.
Fintech companies and traditional financial service players are ideally positioned to take a role in this evolution. Not only do they have the technical capabilities to provide excellent user experiences, but also they have access to valuable financial transaction data allowing excellent customer segmentation. There are several ways in which banks can leverage these technological advancements to engage with customers and drive brand awareness among consumers. Using contextual, action-triggered vouchers, coupons, and 3rd party promo codes can provide an additional competitive edge, add empathy to traditionally formal banking services, and offer an easy online payment solution for the unbanked while increasing payment security.
Now let's look at 6 specific ways to leverage vouchers to modernize the digital banking strategy.
1. Enable digital payment vouchers to process online transactions
Online payments are still a touchy subject in many places around the world, and it's not uncommon for consumers to not trust a lot of payment gateways, especially in developing markets. They're afraid to input their bank card details for fear that they might be defrauded. Another reason people refrain from paying digitally is that they simply don’t have such possibilities. Figures show that more than 2 billion people in the world today don't have access to basic financial methods, such as the ability to make and receive online payments for digital services.
Although international and local fintech startups have made improvements over the past few years, resulting in significant progress, there is still much work to do before we can say online payment is truly accepted everywhere. One of our customers, Wellvis.org, a telemedicine service came up with a reliable solution to overcome the lack of trust and make the online payments for their services widely accessible: digital payment vouchers. Partnering with local pharmacies and stores, they sell unique, product- and service-based vouchers that can be redeemed on mobile or desktop to access health services online. The bonus of that is Wellviss has noticed the vouchers are often bought as gifts for family and close ones.
“The digital voucher is a great alternative for those who are not able to use credit or debit cards.”
- Wale Adeosun, MD, Co-Founder of Wellvis.org
Read next: How Wellvis Health uses digital payment vouchers to increase payment security and allow unbanked individuals to easily pay for remote, digital doctor's visits.
How could this be used in financial services?
Taking an example from Wellvis, financial institutions and payment gateways could integrate digital voucher payments into their offerings. It starts from building or integrating a voucher infrastructure that could handle generating product- or service-specific vouchers, that can be activated upon payment in-store or directly sold in physical locations.
2. Implement action-driven incentives to shape consumer emotions and behavior.
Moment Marketing has been here for some time but hasn't quite reached financial institutions yet. According to Google, ‘moment marketing’ is the ability to take advantage of an event to deliver relevant and related, seemingly spontaneous, and often fleeting interactions with customers in real-time. And not just any interactions, but those, that respond to customers' circumstances and moments. What matters here, is to send the right message, at the right time to drive action or simply, deepen the connection. Contextual and action-driven vouchers can greatly support that. Imagine rewarding your customer with a coffee voucher when they have already waited for an hour on a Customer Care phone line to resolve their issue.
Through surprising, personalized action, you invoke positive emotions about your brand, building long-lasting consumer connections, and more importantly, prevent negative feelings towards your service. In the same way, you can use any Customer information, such as age, lifestyle habits, or contact touchpoint as a reason to make their life easier by giving your clients additional privileges, eg. easier access to iPhone with the product-specific loan.
Incentives shape habits.
Moreover, action rewarding incentives help to create desired habits, letting you optimize your business for profitability. For instance, instead of punishing your clients for making more than 3 ATM withdrawals a month, reward them for keeping the limit. This way, you turn the negative punishment-like feelings, into a positive one - the customer feels great about the brand, and also, about themselves for doing something good (keeping the limit).
The competitive advantage of the new challenger bank Point is the perks & benefits system attached to their debit card. Although the customer pays an annual membership, Point promises rewards on debit-card purchases, as well as a pretty generous insurance package - something that was traditionally available solely to credit card owners.
3. Give your Business Customers the ability to share discounts across your customer base
The global lockdowns have heavily affected small-business customers. For community banks and credit unions, this customer need has created a unique opportunity. Yet, many banks and credit unions have not figured out quite how to move beyond the traditional lender role they have played for so long. You can support your business customers, by simply offering them to promote their special offers across your consumer base, and potentially integrating their promotions into your action-driven incentives from the previous point. A great example is offering a special deals package from a furniture store or home finishing services when a customer is interested in a mortgage. Revolut Ltd, a British fintech company that offers banking services, is great example of such implementation. Working with the 3rd party partners, they offer their consumer base personalized discounts and special offers that can not be found anywhere else. This way, they help small businesses promote their offerings and give additional perks for customers to use their challenger bank.
4. Use charity vouchers to enable your clients to do good, driving engagement and positive societal change.
According to a recent study by Salesforce, 93% of consumers say that companies have a responsibility to look beyond profit and positively impact society. That means, companies nowadays are expected to Forster societal change and advocate for human rights. Although traditional banks and financial services run Corporate Responsibility Departments, the actions of such departments don’t usually reach the consumers. Since the last year’s pandemic and movements related to climate change, inequality, and racism issues have highly influenced people’s priorities, more and more consumers and employees will consider switching their workforce or service provider that demonstrates poor ethics. To shape long-lasting consumer relationships, businesses need to acknowledge that, thus switch from IQ-, purely rational sales to EQ-driven strategy. In other words, focusing on building the emotional connection between the company, its target market, and society as a whole will result in increased customer loyalty and long-term profitability.
How can fintech leverage that?
Implementing consumer-centric innovations requires businesses to inspire their customers to do better, but also to enable them to do good themselves. To achieve that, integrate action-driven cashback vouchers, coupons, and gift cards for local charities or international platforms like GlobalGiving.org or GivenGain.com. For instance, reward your customers with such vouchers every time your customer reaches a high funds threshold on their savings account or a low amount of ATM cash withdrawals. Optionally, you can implement a charity-based cashback: each time a customer makes a card-based purchase, a part of your profit goes to the charity. This way, you foster a profit-resulting consumer behavior, and more importantly, make your customers feel good about themselves.
5. Retain customers through loyalty cards and coupons on the selective wallet or card offerings
When customers compare their digital experiences, there is often quite a large gap between the usability of their banking services and the experience with their digital wallets, like Apple Pay or PayPal. Since an extraordinary experience with one company raises the expectations of another, digital financial services might often cause disappointment.
On top of that, we live in an era of constant data collection. Consumers want to know what their daily average heart rate is or how much time they spend on their mobile apps. For banks, that means that beyond their account or credit card balances, consumers increasingly want access to information and advice about their finances that can motivate them to make more informed decisions and help to reach wealth faster.
Institutions can support that by providing detailed account analytics and financial predictions, but also, through the use of coupons on selective cards or motivating customers to save money aside, rewarding it with cashback. For instance, a 1% cashback on the purchase of $600, applicable only if the transaction is made by a credit or a pre-paid card. By retaining customers through attractive offers, the institution can increase its competitive edge and market share.
One of our Customers Travel Money Oz, has implemented that flawlessly with their Currency Pass product, a pre-paid card that can store various currencies. To encourage higher money transfer on the card, they have implemented a tiered promotion - the more money customers transfer to their account, the more they get on top, up to $40, with a $1500 load.
6.Integrate gift card balance into the customer account
This is an advanced option for tech-savvy digital banks since it requires integration with cashiers or voucher management systems like ours. To make it easy for your customers to use vouchers, build or integrate a Customer Vouchers Wallet, that enables customers to scan and add their gift-card information. Next time the customer does a transaction at the store that issued the gift-card, pass the voucher code info to the store and deduct the credits from the voucher automatically, without the customer needing to scan the voucher. Thanks to that, your customer won't have to remember to show the voucher to the cashier and can enjoy a faster transaction.