To improve customer loyalty, close the gap between marketing & sales

increase customer lifetime value
…63% of surveyed financial services professionals say they lack the customer insights they need to evolve their sales approach

At some point, no matter what organization you work in, the relationship and alignment between Marketing and Sales is bound to be off. Most will say it’s off more than it’s on.

According to Sales, Marketing is not delivering enough leads, or the leads are not high quality. The campaigns are not resonating, the messages are not “right.” Sales wants a silver bullet.

If you were to ask Marketing, Sales is not actioning the leads in a timely manner, or worse, not working them at all. In addition, rich data is not being captured on why a prospect says yes or no. Marketing wants visibility for a closed feedback loop. Should I go on?

There is a correlation between the challenges facing Marketing and Sales.

Marketing is challenged to deliver personalized, real-time, integrated customer offers that are relevant and have measurable ROI. As for Sales, they feel that they are not effectively managing or meeting the needs of their customers, as they are handicapped by lack of visibility and insight. As such, they can’t anticipate the needs of their customers appropriately. Furthermore, Sales feels that their systems don’t provide them with the ability to serve their customers in a seamless, pertinent, personalized manner.

At the end of the day, both Marketing and Sales want the same thing – to increase customer lifetime value. But to do this, banks need customers to trust that they are offering them the right product for their needs at that moment in time.

Last year, Pega commissioned Forrester to conduct a global survey of 250 financial institutions on the state of their customer-centered sales culture. The results showed that the majority of banking customers expect their financial institution to know their needs, understand their goals, and make personalized recommendations to them. However, 63 percent of surveyed financial services professionals say they lack the customer insights they need to evolve their sales approach.

Additionally, according to the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer, nearly half of consumers don’t trust their financial institutions. Although confidence has improved by 6 percent in the past 5 years, levels still aren’t high, and are lagging behind other industries as banking scandals continue to make headlines.

Financial institutions need to make a deliberate shift in the way that they are marketing and selling to customers in order to gain their trust.

In order for financial services organizations to compete for the trust and loyalty of their customers, they have to remain relevant and meaningful to the customer’s needs and wants. Customers today, in each and every industry, are demanding personalized messaging, tailored to their needs and wants, in their channel of choice. No longer is the marketing tactic of “one-to-many,” the product push, or “special of the month” acceptable or sustainable.

Customers don’t care that the bank operates with disparate systems and siloed platforms. They are entrusting the bank with their hard earned money and to fund their daily expenditures, as well as the biggest purchases of their life. When the bank can use the power of insight to appropriately market to them or take the correct action, the customer will begin to gain trust and will increasingly broaden their relationship.

A system powered by AI enables your sales teams with real-time insights and guidance that will help:

  • Prioritize sales initiatives.
  • Provide detailed, up-to-date customer information – who the customer is, where and when they have engaged, their holdings, and their relationship with the bank.
  • Suggest what should be offered, or show what has already been offered to them, and why.
  • Run personalized reports and campaigns.

These insights and tools, driven by AI, enable relationship managers and front line sales members to provide personalized service to their clients, and empower them to have the intelligent conversations that are expected by today’s customers. Furthermore, in this social world, where shared experiences make or break a brand, building customer trust can have a great impact on the bank’s brand.

In this competitive and ever changing environment, banks have no reason nor excuse not to adopt available AI and trusted CRM technologies that can provide their Marketing, Sales, and Service teams with the tools they need to proactively and intelligently build lifelong, personalized relationships with their customers. It’s time to close the gap between Sales and Marketing, and begin working jointly as a team to put the customer in the center of EVERY interaction across the enterprise. Valuing the individual needs of each customer is the only way to build trust, loyalty, and your brand.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: With more than two decades of financial industry experience, Monica Hovsepian provides subject matter expertise to banks around the world as Pega’s global director for financial services industry marketing.