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Financial services

Modernizing offer management systems to win the battle for growth

Leveraging the power of automation, rapid experimentation and real-time information management to put customer needs first is critical to driving engagement and loyalty.

In brief:

  • Many banks understand that timely, personalized offers are critical to driving growth but lack the systems to achieve their strategic goals.
  • Effective offer management systems that leverage automation to boost the speed and relevance of personalized offers can enhance customer engagement, acquisition and loyalty rates.
  • Banks that embrace real-time interaction management (RTIM), rapid experimentation and automated disclosures can position themselves to compete in a fast-moving environment.

Banks are battling for growth in the face of rapidly evolving technologies, changing regulations, shifting customer expectations, and innovative competitors. Many are losing that fight due to outdated offer management programs that can’t keep pace with their strategic ambitions.

Chief marketing officers (CMOs) understand that the success of any customer-centric strategy lies in offering the right product at the right time and channel in the customer journey. The problem is many banks lack the RTIM, rapid experimentation and, model-driven arbitration capabilities needed to generate tailored, timely offers which drive long-term revenue growth.

A robust offer management system that leverages those technologies effectively can significantly boost personalization, speed-to-market, organizational agility, and coordination across business lines and channels. Banks that are serious about improving their customer loyalty, acquisition, and cross-selling rates should consider making offer management a top priority.

How poor offer management systems hinder strategy

Many banks are hamstrung by legacy systems and processes that put product-centric goals above customer needs, limiting the ability of customer-centric strategies to drive higher customer acquisition and wallet share numbers.

The average bank devotes about 45% of its marketing budget to offers and associated campaigns yet convinces customers to convert just 4.5% of the time. In contrast, top-performing banks boast conversion rates of about 8%.

Banks that have yet to modernize their offer management programs often are challenged to deliver on the following customer expectations:

Personalized experiences – Many banks struggle to deliver offers that meet individual customers’ unique needs and preferences. Banks with offer management systems that lack the ability to harness customer data and identify patterns in customer behavior to deliver personalized offers and experiences, often struggle with low growth and overall customer lifetime value.

Relationship-based pricing – Many banks lack the systems and organizational agility needed to deliver effective relationship-based pricing. Unable to access relevant customer insights, these banks often struggle to offer preferential pricing, or bundled/reward offers to their loyal customers. A one-size-fits-all approach to pricing puts customer loyalty and long-term growth at-risk.

Operational roadblocks to effective offer management

Many banks don’t get the most out of offers because legacy structures, processes and technologies are not equipped to maximize their value. Key challenges hampering effective offer management include:

  • Siloed operating models. Siloed teams often focus on product-centric goals instead of enabling customer journeys. This can leave customers bombarded with multiple offers that are not aligned with their needs and create disjointed experiences.
  • Multiple core systems. Product and pricing masters at many banks are fragmented across multiple core systems. The inability to combine data from these systems makes it difficult to create bundled offers that align with customers’ unique life circumstances.
  • Multiple touchpoints. Targeted offer rollouts at the average institution move through 12 to 14 manual touchpoints and can take up to 180 days to get from ideation to fulfillment, resulting in inefficiencies. In contrast, leading banks that have invested in automation can deliver personalized offers at scale in as little as five days.
  • Poor offer evaluation. Many banks lack the technologies and processes to quickly capture customer inputs and feed it back into the offer ideation process. An effective offer management function can drive continuous improvement by leveraging model-driven arbitration to help understand which offers resonate with individuals and segments.

As time goes on, these operational gaps between the haves and have-nots are growing. For the have-nots, modernizing systems, processes and cultures to level the competitive playing field has become a matter of survival.

How to build a stronger offer management function

Banks that want to strengthen their offer management capabilities can begin by focusing on the following areas:

  • Adopt a customer-centric strategy
    Tailoring offers to meet individual customer needs, preferences, and behaviors is critical to elevating customer satisfaction, engagement, and loyalty rates. Customer centricity can be a powerful way to generate value and drive growth, but only if management is committed to its implementation and willing to upgrade offer systems where needed.
  • Enhance technology and data capabilities
    Delivering on personalized offer management involves harnessing real time decisioning, journey analytics, and other AI-driven optimization capabilities. Key areas to target for improvement include:  

    • Embrace RTIM. Leveraging AI/ML model driven arbitration of offers across channels and business lines for those that provide the greatest value to the customer can accelerate offer timelines and lead to stronger relationships, growth and profitability. When it comes to arbitrating based on customer data, models are better than humans.
    • Expand rapid experimentation. Constantly testing the effectiveness of different variables, such as day of the week, product or offer terms, is best done as a model-driven exercise. Strong tracking and feedback loops can indicate in real-time customer reactions to specific actions or offers, informing continuous improvement.
    • Automate disclosures. As offers become more tailored to individual customers, ensuring the appropriate disclosures accompany each offer becomes critical. Automating the process can help ensure accuracy, consistency, and compliance with relevant regulations.
  • Empower executors
    Giving operators the skills to monitor performance and the license to quickly adjust offers based on customer’s most pressing needs can lay the groundwork for improved performance.
  • Improve end-to-end visibility
    Effective offer management requires a comprehensive approach. Banks can begin by integrating fulfillment cycles across channels, aggregating reporting and tracking offer performance to power superior customer experiences.

In conclusion

Banks that incorporate RTIM, rapid experimentation and automated communications into their offer management systems can accelerate offer timelines and achieve the promise of customer-centric strategies to power growth in a competitive environment.

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      Meet our experts

      Chandramouli Venkatesan

      Vice President – Portfolio Development Lead – Digital Front Office Transformations | Banking and Capital Markets
      Chandra leads the Front Office transformation portfolio (marketing, sales and customer service) and serves banking and capital markets clients. He focuses his work on customer experience and helping financial institutions transform marketing, sales and customer service into more customer-centric organizations with an emphasis on experience strategy design, technology and data. Chandra has deep experience driving CX transformation for retail banks, payments companies, wealth management and capital markets firms.

      Aalekh Bhatt

      Go To Market lead – Digital Marketing for BCM @ Capgemini UK

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