I recently listened to an episode of the Banking Transformed podcast with Jim Marous. This particular episode, Creating Loveable Experiences Through Innovation Simplicity with guest Jin Kang Moller, previous vice president of customer experience at OCBC Bank, discussed this idea that simplicity lies at the heart of innovation. Consumers today want to engage with businesses that make it easy, intuitive and emotional to engage with them.
This idea, sparked a conversation among our team about what it takes to be innovative. Ultimately, what we landed on was that brands who are doing innovation right tend to hold a few key tenants to be true no matter what:
- Creating moments of delight
You see this at play with companies like Paypal, who continue to roll out features with the goal of becoming a super app; their focus isn’t just on getting you to conduct a certain type of transaction on their platform, but to engage with them longer each time they return through multiple features. The length of an engagement is the new measure of customer loyalty.
So how do you bake in this idea of simplicity to a fintech? Is it measurable? Do you develop for it? And how does it translate into your marketing and branding? Does it even matter?
THE IMPACT OF BRAND ON INNOVATION
Early in brand development discussions, our team had a lot of conversations about what we believe our company values are. One word that consistently got brought up was “innovation.” It sounds chic, cool and forward-thinking when you say it, but as a marketer, it made me cringe. Innovation is an easy word to toss around, but you really have to be ready to put your money where your mouth is if you’re going to prop that up as a cornerstone of your brand. So the challenge became to define what innovation within PayRecs means.
Which is why my interest was piqued as I listened to this particular podcast episode. For our team, innovation means delivering solutions that are simple and impactful. Those two values are not fixed to each other. Sometimes, it’s more important to solve a problem in the simplest way possible; the least amount of steps for a consumer or the easiest way to accomplish a particular task. But other times, making the biggest impact is the most important way to demonstrate innovation. It may require a user to click two more times than the simplest solution might have, but the impact it makes is far more significant. And therein lies our moment of delight. An experience that the user wants to share and encourages them to come back and use our product more frequently.
LEVERAGING FINTECHS AS A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
I’ll admit, I was not sold on this idea that financial institutions can create loveable moments or moments of delight for their customers. I can’t remember the last time I was delighted to work with my financial institution and I bet that you probably can’t either. So how can this idea be achieved?
Fintech companies offer a unique advantage to financial institutions
Fintech companies can help financial institutions stand apart from their competitors by helping them create moments of delight. It’s no secret that it can be difficult for FI’s to innovate. There’s technology hurdles, regulatory hurdles, resource hurdles…the list goes on. When an FI partners with fintechs they can bypass some of these hurdles and bring moments of delight to their customers; a moment that elicits a happy reaction from an unexpected and thoughtful experience.
So this idea that creating loveable experiences within FI’s isn’t actually that far-fetched. Fintech partners can bring solutions to the table that act as conduits for the FI’s. Our innovation success is the FI’s innovation success; the FI has a chance to create a moment of delight when they present a partner or solution to their customers and members that’s simple and impactful. Read another way: innovative.
By keeping simplicity and impactfulness at the forefront of the customer experience, you’re guaranteed to create moments of delight for them. Which increases customer loyalty, creates positive brand affinity and ultimately allows you to claim the coveted innovation value.