Spotlight: Apps & Financial Services

18 September 2020 | Mike, Digital Services

Fintech is making personal finance an ever-present in people’s lives. Nowadays we don’t just visit our banks – we carry them in our pockets.

This has shifted what banks do far beyond the remit of traditional banking services. Increasingly, apps, websites and other digital platforms are being used to deliver solutions that improve the user’s financial wellness.

This leaves financial services providers with a decision to make. They can forge ahead by embracing digital opportunities and expectations – or they can stick to the old ways of doing things, at the risk of getting left behind.

Meet the digital
providers shaking up
financial services

If you’re anything like us, you’ll have noticed a marked increase in emerging personal finance brands gaining prominence and credibility amongst consumers. In almost every case, it’s all down to their digital services.

Here are a few examples that really impressed us:

Monzo – “a new kind of bank”

Monzo say they’re not interested in monetizing their customers by signing them up to mortgages and loans. Instead, they want to offer helpful in-app solutions like detailed expenditure breakdowns, budgeting tools and recommendations for cheaper service providers.

This may sound like a public-spirited approach, but it’s also business-savvy. In a decade’s time, the most popular banks will be those which do digital best. Monzo are anticipating this shift.

In our view, one of the most interesting things about Monzo is the banking intelligence it offers users through its app. For example, account holders can set themselves an advisory budget, and view their spending broken down by expense type (groceries, eating out, transport, etc.)

Intelligence like this can be highly valuable to customers – and yet, despite having all the necessary data at their fingertips, traditional high street banks are not offering anything that comes close to what Monzo does.

Yodlee – “helping people reach their financial wellness goals”

Yodlee is an up-and-coming provider of financial wellness solutions, particularly focused on affluent customers.

One of Yodlee’s products, the Okay To Spend service, uses an aggregated view of the customer’s accounts to provide real-time intelligence on whether or not they can afford to make a purchase, based on a projection of their longer-term financial activity. This is especially useful for investors, who could be paying out risky stakes on a regular basis.

Why digital transition
is difficult for
established brands

Here’s the bad news for blue-chips: implementing FinTech innovations is drastically easier for new brands like Monzo and Yodlee than it is for established providers.

Whereas a start-up can launch with a fully digitised offering, an established business looking to digitally transform may need to deal with legacy systems, change-resistant processes and customers who were not necessarily sold on a digital relationship with the brand.

This is a massive problem for established businesses in a wide range of sectors. And that’s why we’ve come up with some solutions.

How to implement digital as an established service provider

Successful transformation is all about offering something your competitors cannot.

The Royal Bank of Scotland did it in 1728, when they became the first bank to offer overdrafts. And in recent years, Monzo carved out a big market share with their superior digital services.

These brands achieved differentiation by pioneering an innovative offering. Today, established brands should be looking to do the same.

Adding value with new digital services

If you look at the mechanics of insurance...

…you can only conclude that many of the processes involved could be optimised to a very high degree. Transactions, for instance, are often time consuming and cumbersome.

Providers must look to add value  – and ManageMy’s job is to help them do just that.

We enable insurers to deliver their core product digitally, together with carefully selected value-added services that improve the customer’s digital experience and provide you with a continuous flow of actionable user data.

Engagement incentives

If you’ve implemented all the points we’ve made so far, you will almost certainly have seen some improvement in customer uptake of your digital channel.

You will have evolved your service to give customers a compelling reason to go digital; you’ll have created a superior experience by thinking of customer needs first; you’ll have made your channel suitable for regular use; and you’ll have provided the social proof needed to convince people to click ‘Download’.

If you’ve tried all the above with limited success, you can go a step further by offering download incentives such as coupons, special promotions and exclusive content. We’re happy to say this probably won’t be necessary.

See how ManageMy can work for you

Schedule a demo