Mobile Customer Engagement a Big Boost for Financial Services Industry

By Jim Tierney, Loyalty360

The financial services industry can benefit greatly and significantly enhance the customer experience through mobile customer engagement, according to a new study.

Open Market, a leader in enterprise mobile engagement commissioned the study from the International Data Corporation (IDC). The IDC InfoBrief, sponsored by OpenMarket,  is titled “Exploring the Impact of Mobile Messaging in the Financial Services Industry.”

The study reveals results from IT, mobile, and business technology decision-makers representing Global 2000 financial services organizations. The greatest benefits of mobile messaging for this market segment are its abilities to enhance the customer experience and improve employee relations; 88% of these businesses believe SMS has a considerable or major impact on customer service and 73% consider it to be very effective for employee-focused emergency alerts.

Mobile messaging is secure and scalable, and with critical capabilities such as two-factor authentication for fraud detection, the technology is being rapidly adopted industry-wide.

According to the research, the top customer-facing use cases for SMS include timely offers and notifications regarding high-risk, high-dollar transactions, as 30% of these businesses utilize secure SMS messaging to gain deeper customer insights and to meet industry compliance requirements, respectively. Internally, financial services organizations use mobile messaging as a key component for employee communication and contingency planning to improve internal security and facilitate secure employee notifications. Business leaders are also driving new investments in mobile messaging and are closely involved in solution, specification, selection, and deployment to ensure technologies are meeting the standards the industry.

“These findings revealed that the financial services industry has one of the greatest demands for mobile messaging capabilities and that these businesses are taking a long-term, purpose-led approach to their mobile messaging investment,” said Marc DeCastro, Research Director, Consumer Banking, IDC Insights. “Financial services organizations must look at vendors with a track record of secure encryption, outstanding support and managed services, and the flexibility to provision a variety of use cases in order to meet the specific mobile messaging needs of their internal and external stakeholders.”

Here are other key ways that financial services companies are using mobile messaging today:

More than 50% of organizations use mobile messaging to differentiate or improve the customer experience

35% utilize the technology to attract and retain new customers

More than 25% use it to improve the business’ risk mitigation

More than 20% of these businesses use it to ensure business continuity and to enhance multichannel delivery capacity

Surprisingly only 15% use mobile messaging to improve their organization’s security

“These findings show that financial services organizations are incorporating secure, effective mobile messaging into many aspects of their customer service and employee communications, as well as their internal business operations,” said Jay Emmet, General Manager of OpenMarket. “A well-designed, company-wide mobile messaging strategy that meets the industry’s high-compliance and regulated standards will allow businesses to enhance the customer experience, gain additional customer insights, improve employee relations, and drive operational efficiencies.”