Cross selling has certainly gained a negative connotation over the past few years, and with good reason. In order for consumers and small businesses to develop trust and establish a long-term relationship with a bank, they must have confidence that their banker is focused on helping them and improving their financial condition. Cross selling often puts the bank’s priorities first, rather than the consumer.
Instead, think more along the lines of “deep selling” – an alternative approach that focuses on discovering the needs and circumstances of individual customers, educating them about alternatives and making recommendations to improve their financial well-being.
Consider this: customers are no longer prioritizing speed when it comes to service. They want the experience to be personalized. According to Gladly’s 2018 Customer Service Expectations Survey, nearly 60 percent of those surveyed said being treated as an individual was more important than how fast the service was. Unfortunately, the same survey revealed that 61 percent feel like a case number rather than a person. This can be detrimental for a bank.
Customers want their needs met. At the same time, front-line employees want to meet customer needs. The challenge is that many banks have no way of knowing or understanding what those needs are. Historically, financial institutions have determined those needs based on the bank’s corporate goals, such as prioritizing auto loans one month.
This is where cross-selling can go awry – in situations where there is no real consumer need for a product being pushed by the bank. This strategy is no longer acceptable. Frankly, it never really was. Instead, banks must provide their employees with the right tools to help them discover and then meet the customer’s needs. Enter, “deep selling.”
Deep selling offers a more personalized experience. By leveraging AI-driven technology infused with behavioral economics, bankers can provide customers a full scope of accurately recommended products focused on the customer’s needs.
Not only does this help the bank grow much-needed deposits, but customer satisfaction improves. In fact, banks that are deploying a customer needs based engagement strategy are seeing as much as a 40 percent improvement in customer loyalty.
How are banks achieving this?
With the right tools, deep selling can be an elegant solution resulting in a seamless and satisfying customer experience. Customer Engagement Management (CEM) technology uses AI and advanced analytics to guide conversations with customers that lead to a perfect match of their needs with the bank’s products and services.
Banks using CEM technology personalize the experience by gathering real-time information from the customer. They simplify engagement and streamline the decision process by revealing customer needs while also educating the customer about making financially sound decisions. Simply put, CEM technology is your bank’s best friend.
With the right dialogue, empowering bankers with powerful customer engagement tools will lead customers to solutions that more seamlessly meet their needs and improve the customer experience. This is good news, seeing as banks that offer a top-notch customer experience grow revenue faster, drive higher brand preference and can charge more for their products.
Better addressing customer needs also improves retention, further driving deposits. Why? Customers are more likely to stay with a bank that is focused on helping them achieve their long-term financial goals.
Needs based customer engagement can be a successful strategy for banks, especially those looking to grow deposits and improve customer retention. Allowing the customer to take control of the sales process may seem daunting at first, but it can bring a tremendous payoff.
Are you ready to make the switch from cross-selling to deep selling?