How Financial Institutions Connect With Omnichannel Consumers
Providing a seamless experience for consumers in every channel they interact with your brand is a goal for most companies. Easier said than done, but the financial industry has done a better job at this than most. In a session yesterday at the Integrated Marketing Week conference in New York City, Margot Vaughan, group head and senior vice president, MasterCard Advisors, and Linda Gharib, senior vice president, digital marketing, Citigroup, discussed how their companies are leveraging omnichannel strategies to better serve their customers.
Citigroup uses a model it calls Marketing 360, which examines the marketing relationship through the line — from awareness to conversion to advocacy — and in totality, rather than by individual channel (e.g., TV, display, search, direct mail, email). It's critical that the brand messaging is consistent throughout all channels, Gharib said. In addition to looking at marketing campaigns in a 360-degree view, Citigroup underwent an "agency rationalization" to find agencies that are experts in each channel it uses.
For financial institutions, including MasterCard Advisors and Citigroup, it was imperative that they be smarter with how they spent their marketing dollars post-2008. Vaughan cited an example of how MasterCard Advisors is effectively integrating the offline-online experience. She mentioned bank solicitations for credit card enrollments via direct mail, with prospects being directed online to sign up. MasterCard Advisors has developed a "digital welcome kit" for those online sign-ups, which includes simple step-by-step instructions on how they can activate their cards. "It's cheaper for the banks [which MasterCard is working with], gives them the ability to customize and provides them more flexibility," said Vaughan.
Gharib echoed the thoughts of Vaughan, saying that Citigroup's marketing department has shifted from a channel-specific mind-set to an objective-oriented focus. With that shift in mind-set came the realization that digital knowledge was lacking at the company. To address this issue, Citigroup launched Center of Knowledge, a program designed to teach its employees about digital marketing.