Financial services are no exception to customers’ demand for convenience and excellent service. Younger generations, in particular, are leaning more and more towards digital-only financial brands that meet their needs with as little hassle as possible. 

But you can still win and retain members in an increasingly demanding and competitive market—the solutions and differentiation points for your financial brand may be found in automating certain interactions with your members. Read on to discover automation tips to keep members engaged throughout their journey, stand out from the competition, and retain your members for life. 


1. Webchat FAQs

No one enjoys phone trees, waiting on hold, and on customer service. Yet concerns and questions are bound to arise, and members want answers in real-time. Some issues can only be resolved through the financial service experts; but many client concerns (80%, according to one study) are common and do not require human interaction. Bots often get a bad rap, but the truth is that AI and chatbots can provide very human-like interactions, and resolve concerns faster (and for less money) than full-time employees. 

Consider adding a web chat feature on your website to answer FAQs and more personal queries like checking an account, reporting lost cards, making payments, renewing policies, updating personal information, or checking the status of a loan approval. When common concerns are resolved quickly and with an autonomous feel, your members are more likely to be satisfied, stick with your financial brand, and recommend your services to others. 


2. Review requests

a hand holding iPhone with google my business on the screen

If you want to keep the incoming flow of new members and clients, you’re going to need the help of reviews; so don’t leave asking for reviews out of the membership journey. Frequent and positive Google Reviews will direct qualified leads to your services and improve interactions with current and future members of your financial brand. 

At a memorable step of the member journey, automate a text to your members inviting them to write a review on your Google My Business listing. Why via text? Because it’s convenient, quick, and preferred by 90% of customers. These small interactions with your members can demonstrate your attentiveness to their communication preferences, and reap long-lasting rewards of loyal members and improved reputation—keeping engagement high. 


3. New offers

The days of in-person deposits and conversations with local representatives are waning. When staff and employees have personal interactions and relationships with members, it’s easier to know what services they could benefit from or need advice about. And these types of conversations don’t need to end in the digital age; in fact, they can improve and transform based on intelligent data. 

Based on the information you have about your members, you can recommend new services or offers to expand their membership. Everyone is looking for a good deal; and if you have insight to your members’ (or potential members’) plans and goals, you can provide personalized offers they’ll love. Inform members of these opportunities through the appropriate channels including texting, web chat, in-app messaging or notifications, social media, and ads. 

For example, if a member recently updated their employment information, reach out with an automated message inquiring about their 401k. If a student uses your financial branch for an auto loan, inform them of the option to open a checking account with an automatic transfer to the loan with each deposit. 


4. Feedback requests

Rather than banking on members being willing to stay on the line of a phone call they likely didn’t want to make in the first place, send feedback requests to members via text message. Texting has nearly a 100% open and completion rate.

The membership journey can always improve. And when you ask for feedback through the channel that members prefer, their responses will help you implement the feedback sooner. Keep your members happy with a constant aim for improvement.


5. Member education

Your members should not have to jump through every imaginable hoop to perform basic actions and retrieve relevant financial information. Optimize your website for mobile devices and organize your content in a way that educates and clarifies information for your members. 

man using laptop viewing optimized website

Provide all relevant information for your services; enable customers to self-serve and begin (or even complete) the process of applying for loans, opening accounts, paying bills, investing, insuring, saving, and anything else you offer, from your website. 70% of customers prefer to use a company’s website to get answers, rather than calling or emailing. When customers do need or want to speak with a local representative, make the interactions convenient by offering help via text, web chat, or direct calls. 

With a few simple automations, you can empower and please customers, save time and resources for staff, and create a seamless member journey. Learn how to connect and engage with members online and offline with an in-depth look at interaction management. Download our interaction management eBook today. 

Jeff Moss
Jeff Moss AVP of Financial Services Enterprise Sales

Jeff Moss is a credit union and bank professional at Podium, the leading messaging platform that connects financial institutions with their members and prospects.

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