By Sanjib Kalita, Editor-in-Chief,
was originally published on Money20/20.
We are in the midst of seismic societal
changes of how people interact and transact. Across societies,
geographies and segments, digital is the new norm. Change has accelerated,
placing greater value upon flexibility and speed. Historically, money and
finance have been among the more conservative and slower changing parts of
society, but this has changed dramatically over the past decade by viewing
money as an instigator of change rather than a lagging indicator.
Whether you are a marketer in shining armor
conquering new territory, a financial wizard casting spells upon the balance
sheet, or the queen or king guiding the whole enterprise, here are 4 trends
about money that you should keep in mind for your business.
Platforms are the new kingdoms
Platforms are the base upon which other
structures can be built. For example, App stores from Apple and Google
provide the infrastructure for consumers to complete commercial transactions
and manage finances through their mobile phones. While these companies
develop their own digital wallets, they also enable similar services from
banks, retailers and other companies. Building and maintaining the
platform enables services that they would not have created on their own, like
Uber or Lyft, which in turn, have created their own platforms.
Marketers trying to address customers’ needs
can plug into platforms to broaden offerings or deepen engagement with target
markets. Platform-based thinking implies that product and service design is
ongoing and doesn’t stop with a product launch. Jack Dorsey didn’t stop
when he built the Square credit card reader. The team went into lending
with Square Capital. They got into consumer P2P payments with Square
Cash. Their ecosystem has grown through partnerships with other companies
as well as in-house development.
Digital Identities open the gates
How do your customers interact with you?
Do they need to create a username and password, or can they use a 3rd
party system like Google or Facebook? Are security services like
two-factor authentication or biometrics used to protect credentials? Is
your company protecting customer identities adequately? The importance of
all of these questions is increasing and often the difference between being
forced into early retirement by a massive data breach or surviving to continue
to grow your business.
While identity management and digital
security might not be top of mind for most marketers, they are table stakes for
even the most basic future business. History is full of tales of rulers
successfully fighting off armies laying sieges on castles and fortresses, only
to fail when another army gets access to a key for the back door.
Context rules the experience
Credit card transactions moved from
predominantly being in-store, to e-commerce sites accessed from desktop
computers, and now to mobile phones. As the point-of-purchase expanded,
so did the consumer use cases and thought processes. In tandem, mobile screens
presents less information than desktop computer screens, which in turn presents
less information than associates in a brick-and-mortar environment.
Companies best able to understand context and deliver the right user
experience within these constraints will build loyal customer relationships.
Apps or services created for a different
use cases on the same platform, such as Facebook and Messenger apps, can help
achieve this. Banks and have different apps for managing accounts or for
completing transactions or payments. On a desktop, you can access these
services through a single interface but on the mobile, forcing users to select
their use case helps present a streamlined experience on the smaller, more
time-constrained mobile screen. The use of additional data such as
location, device, etc. can further streamline the experience. Marketers that
don’t think about the context will lose the battle before it even begins.
Data is gold
While a marketer’s goal is to generate
sales, data has become a value driver. In the financial world, data about
payments, assets and liabilities has become critical in how products and
services are delivered. PayPal, a fintech that began even before the word
‘fintech’, has recently been using payments data from their platform to help
build a lending business for their customers. Similarly, an SME lender
named Kabbage has grown to unicorn status by using data from other sources to
make smarter lending and pricing decisions. In the payments industry,
Stripe distilled a previously complex technology integration into a minimal
data set, accessed via API, to easily build payments into new digital products
Those that are able to harness the power of
data will be able to predict what customers want and more effectively address
their needs. In some cases, it might be using data from within your
enterprise or from other platforms for targeting, pricing or servicing
decisions. In other cases, it might be using data to reimagine what your
product or service is.
Looking for more insights on key trends in
money? Hear from 400+ industry leaders at Money20/20 USA. Money20/20 USA will
be held on October 27-30, 2019 at The Venetian Las Vegas. To learn more and
attend visit us.money2020.com.
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