Banking on Digital Growth
Banking on Digital Growth

Episode · 1 year ago

100) #InsideDigitalGrowth - 10 Key Insights from Our First 100 Episodes

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The last year wasn’t what anyone expected, but plenty of good things came out of the chaos of the pandemic.

Here at Banking on Digital Growth, the silver lining comes in the form of 100 episodes.

And it wouldn’t be possible without you.

To celebrate, I’ve curated the key insights from the top 10 episodes — picked by you, the dear listener.

So, I’d love for you to join this very special episode you made possible as we countdown the most important lessons from some of our phenomenal guests: Chris Skinner, Ron Shevlin, Jay Palter, Matt Monge, Whitney Loe, Jeffery Kendall, Eric Berg, Kim Snyder, Bryan Clagett, and Kara Yaquinta.

You can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Banking on Digital Growth on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.

Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Banking on Digital Growth in your favorite podcast player.
 

...greetings in. Hello, it's James robert and I have a surprise for you in today's episode because we did it, we did it together, you, me and all of the amazing guests that have joined me on the show so far. This episode is a special episode because you you helped put it together, you helped shape the content, you helped produce it. You're listening to banking on digital growth. With James Robert lay a podcast that empowers financial brand marketing, sales and leadership teams to maximize their digital growth potential by generating 10 times more loans and deposits. Today's episode is part of the inside digital growth series where James Robert shares, answers to some of the biggest digital marketing and sales questions he gets from the digital growth community. Have a question you want to get answers to on a future episode, visit www dot go ask jr dot com to submit your question today. Now let's go inside digital growth greetings and hello, I am James robert, ley and welcome to the 1/100 episode of the banking on digital growth podcast. Today's episode is part of the insight digital growth series and as I mentioned before, it will be a special episode As we reflect back on the 1st 100 episodes that we made it through together when I think about the journey that we embarked on around a year ago now, I have nothing but gratitude and thanks in my heart. I'm grateful. I'm thankful for you joining me on this journey, for inviting me for giving me the opportunity to spend time with you during your day and and maybe I've joined you on a run. Maybe it's been on a ride, Maybe I've joined you in the evening for a glass of wine or a cocktail or maybe I've joined you in the morning for a cup of coffee. But regardless of when I've joined you or how many times maybe you've listened to multiple episodes of the podcast or maybe this is your first episode. Whatever your story is, I am grateful for the opportunity to join together with you on our mission here at the Digital Growth Institute to simplify digital marketing and sell strategies that empower financial brands and fintech to generate 10 times more loans and deposits. Because working together, I truly do believe that we can make the world a billion times better by guiding a billion people beyond their financial stress towards a bigger, better and brighter future. And the only reason that you're listening to this 1/100 episode right now, it's really because of you and truth be told. If it were not for Covid, there is a strong possibility you might not be listening to this podcast at all. In fact, in addition to celebrating 100 episodes, we also just recently celebrated another milestone as my book banking on digital growth just turned one years old in mid May and over the past year, banking on digital growth has been named the number one amazon best seller in five categories. It was one of the eight books to shift your entrepreneurial perspective named by entrepreneur dot com, the best new digital marketing book from book authority and one of the best crediting the books from management as noted from Kirk drake at C two point oh and if I think back to when we were launching the book, COVID shut the world down. The book was supposed to have lush in April of 2020 we hit the pause button. We ended up watching it in May of 2020. And before that I was, I was on the road, key noting, speaking at a...

...conference on site leading training or or an advisory workshop for financial brand pretty much every week or every other week. And with a schedule like that launching a podcast would have been challenging to say the least if if really not impossible. But with everything shut down for Covid, I figured what better way to transfer everything that we were learning at the time through the Covid experience because there really wasn't a playbook for Covid, but to transfer all of that knowledge, everything that we were learning that we were teaching to other financial brands at scale to help educate, to help empower, to help elevate marketing cells and leadership teams around the world. What better way to do that than to start a podcast And now One year later and and 100 episodes in with a production and publishing schedule that releases two shows per week. The banking on digital growth podcast is now being listened to by over 20,000 years In over 120 different countries every 90 days. The podcast has also been named a top 20 cells leadership podcast by feed spot. In addition to being named one of the best banking podcast of 2021 according to Welp magazine, which is based out of London. But this podcast, this podcast would not be possible without you and that is why once again I want to thank you for tuning in and listening because it has been both an absolute honor and a pleasure to spend time together with you. I am also very grateful for my team that has helped to make this podcast a reality big Thanks to laura for helping coordinate my schedule and all the guests that have joined me for some really good conversations shout out and thank you to rob for helping to lead the production team, to take the audio and do your magic, do your work to help make me sound good. And then also thank you to Audrey for helping to coordinate all of the content that comes from the conversation to follow up with the guests on the show and really continue to help get the knowledge and the insights that we're sharing out into the world at scale out into our ever growing digital growth community. I'd also like to thank the guests, all of the guests that we've had on the show so far. It's been really good getting to spend time with each and every one of you to ask you questions to to listen to learn and then being able to take your knowledge, your insight, your expertise and transferred and share it to others at scale through the podcast. I really, I really have learned so much from each and every one of you, all of the guests because I truly do believe that in life sometimes you're the teacher, sometimes you're the student. But through either experience there is always always something new to be learned. As I mentioned before. This 100th episode is an episode that you dear listener helped to produce, helped to put together because it's based upon what you have listened to most. And when we reflect back on the 1st 100 episodes of the podcast, we used your listening trends, your patterns in the data that we were able to gain To put together and compile the top 10 most listened to episodes while pulling out the biggest key insights each guest shared during our conversation together. So think about this episode, episode 100 as a best of collection, a best of collection of knowledge that you helped to curate. So with that in mind I would...

...like to share with you the key insights that we've all gained From the top 10 episodes that you're listening behavior. Help to vote for starting with the number 10 spot. Leaving the cave of complacency with Cara Iaquinta. And in this episode Cara shared the biggest lessons she has learned along her own digital growth journey specifically when it comes to using Ai to guide the production and the promotion of content for her financial brand. There have been a lot of opportunities that have come into play with just reorganizing the way that I do things. One of the biggest ways that we've grown digitally is we've really capitalized and maximized on personalization and our audiences and getting the right information to the right people. So a lot of that has come through the form of retargeting. It's come through the form of um of using audiences to the best their capabilities. So like we use a I of course, and that has really helped us be able to create content that is more purposeful and that means more to people because before, you know, you were just put out a piece of content, but now we're able to put out a piece of content that is curated to a certain person. Yeah. And I want to talk about that idea on on two sides, one you talked about getting the right message to the right people at the right time, and then you also talked about this idea of being more purposeful with your content. So first let's talk about right message right time, because I know that that has been a really big recent win for you because it's all about what value are we creating through our content. Can we prove that value? Can we show that value? Can we quantify that value? And one of the very simple winds that you were able to deploy was to your point, retargeting, retargeting people who have started an application or who have taken some type of behavior. And it wasn't, it wasn't massive change. It was a massive transformation. It was a little wind that led to massive results. Right? Honestly, Yes. And I so back to kind of the roadblocks. I was hesitant for whatever reason to do that for a long time. But when I I took myself out of the box and I took myself out of the comfort zone and I figured, you know, this is another way to capitalize on opportunities. We did it and it worked and it works so well that now we're moving on and we're doing it in other areas and we're now doing it for more than just one thing though, it's not just okay. We see people have interacted and let's just do this is we see people have interacted, so let's do this. Oh but we've also seen they've interacted and they don't have this. So let's go here. So it kind of takes a puzzle and it's putting the pieces together to really form something that is a whole. You know, it is through constantly putting together the different pieces of the digital puzzle, which is why I am so excited for Cara and her team. What you think about that for a moment, about putting together a puzzle. Because sometimes you, when putting together a puzzle, you just need to look at things just a bit differently to gain clarity. And that...

...brings us to the number nine spot in our Top 10 countdown with insights from brian Claggett in the episode title, Bank of Tomorrow. Why We Should Look outside the industry time I'm spending now, and the time that I see a lot of the sales guys that I know that are no longer quote unquote on the road, you know, they're they're still productive, you know, they're meeting as many people, maybe even more. I think the harder challenge is how to make those interactions quality oriented, right? It's not just a quantity issue, but if you're a sales guy, you know, sometimes your success is measured on on on your visibility out in the market and how many prospects you're actually visiting. That's really not a good metric necessarily. It's the quality of the engagement that counts and ultimately, you know, it's the impact they have, meaning are you driving sales? I think there's, you know, a lot of truth with that because personally speaking, you know, I've enjoyed being able to advise, you know, top 15 over in europe, uh then hop over to the caribbean and then go over to California all in one day and and go home and sleep in my bed at night. So, and and actually get quality sleep and see my wife, see my kids. But then I also think, you know, from the lens of I'm A C. L. O. You know, I'm a lending, uh M. L. O. I I have my own book of business, commercial lending at a bank. What, what, what bu I can't go play golf anymore, but I can get on linkedin and, you know, make all of these connections and have B. J. Palmer and I were talking about this on a previous episode and be a lot more efficient. But it takes a different mindset, it takes a different operational model and and it really forces us to look for the opportunities that we might not have ever considered before. When we were on the golf course, spending four or five hours with, you know, three other people when we look at those opportunities, particularly from the work that you're doing, the collaboration between financial brand and Fin Tech, What are those opportunities that you see in 2021 and beyond? Well, I think I I think it goes back to the theme that I've always believed in and that's just this uh concept of engagement, banking, how to bankers and credit, you know, I always say bankers, right, Credit union years bankers the same thing. How does financial, the financial, the financial services industry as a whole? How does it say highly contextual and highly relevant. And I think whether you have a physical or a digital experience as long as you're contextual and relevant it will be a meaningful engagement. And I think that is what will drive the success of financial services. It's not whether or not you've got a new bank sign out in front of your branch. It's not whether you've got a you know a large market presence which is often defined by not just your your market itself but the number of locations in the market. If you're actually out there leveraging data and building experiences that are meaningful you're going to succeed. And I think that 2020 is a set up for success in 2021. I'm seeing an increase in dedication to digital channels. The P. P. P. Lending thing is a great example carrying these insights for brian what he notes as engagement banking. I want to reinforce there will continue to be a need for financial brands to humanize their digital experiences as people do business with people. People buy from other people and people bank with other people. But that does not mean the human interaction has to be a face to face experience anymore. Think about...

...all the opportunities that digital has opened up for every single one of us over the last 15 to 18 months moving through this post Covid world. And one of the biggest things that I can think of that brian and I talked about was the opportunity to use digital to use automation to use Ai to automate the predictable, to free up people's time. Specifically the front line the cells, the service leaders the lenders so that they can do more to humanize the exceptional. Let's move on to the number eight spot in our top 10 countdown featuring insights from the episode data demystified what your financial brand needs to know with Kim Snyder. As we discussed in this episode. Data is the oil of the new economy and it's important that I. T. Needs to let go of the keys to the kingdom to empower financial brands to continue to maximize their future digital growth potential with oil helping to make their digital growth engine run smoothly. There's so much talk at the macro level about data being the oil of the new economy and I'm curious to learn from your perspective because I see this too. Why has data historically been siloed from the lens of I. T. Information technology? You know because I see there's opportunity from a marketing perspective and there's an opportunity from the cells in a lending perspective. But can we just unwind some of this of y. I. T. For lack of a better word traditionally holding the keys to the kingdom. And how might we allow I. T. To let go of some of that power and control and and and reduce some of the the traditional silos that might be holding back progress here. Yeah I think it goes back to I. T. Manages the core systems of a bank right there. They're typically the owners of the core system and the report writing right functionality lives within the core for for a lot of the key data points. Right? And so oftentimes a bank will will will have a core system they'll have a report writing license but those report writing licenses might be expensive. They're cumbersome. It's not an easy thing to do, right? So so it's it's a certain group of people inside of your organization that has the skill set right to write reports and and deliver information. And so I think it's a system problem, to be honest with you. It's the way data is delivered to the banks today. Their data but they have a difficulty accessing it. That's that's the problem we're trying to solve. That's the problem. We are solving it clear of us, right? And you mentioned marketing James robert and sometimes you'll go in and data will be owned entirely by the marketing department. That's not the right answer either. It truly needs to be an enterprise wide asset needs art from the top down. The strategic plan needs to be talking about the importance of data and data analytics that needs to have bored by in, right? And this it needs to be baked into the DNA of the bank, I mean and and that doesn't happen overnight. That's a culture change for sure. But it's critical in this new post covid industry, the world that we're living in. It's absolutely critical. It's going to be paramount for them to be able to continue to compete in my opinion Onward and upward to the # seven spot in our top 10 countdown with he insights from the episode title, your customers are human, serve their emotional needs with Erik Berg. I really think that as we look at banking as we look at providing financial products and services to those that were serving in the industry. The thing that we really have to keep in mind and one of the things that we...

...really have the opportunity to talk about now is this idea that people are emotional beings, right? And as emotional beings, every decision we make is an emotional decision. As human beings, we justify them with logic. So we spend a lot of time justifying things and so we may want to go buy a new car, but then we go home and we put a spreadsheet together and we do the pros and cons. We run the numbers, We figure out what we can really afford, right? But we really want the new car. And the emotional side of that is what's really important because that's why cars come out with the new colors and new shapes and new designs. Because they want to entice you. They want to drive that emotional experience an emotional connection. And so as financial brands, when we take a look at the fact that we are serving customers who are human beings, we need to need to be considerate of the fact that, okay, what are their emotional needs? What are their emotional decisions that they're making every day and how can we best support them? And the way we can do that is by purposefully approaching their financial needs in a way that meets them where they live. I really do appreciate this thinking about the emotional side of banking and one that I'm hoping more financial brand marketing cells and leadership teams lean into further because for the most part, financial brands are led by very smart left brain driven leaders and that's good because we want them to make logical decisions about money. But the challenge comes in when those leaders fail to consider the emotional decisions that people make when shopping for and purchasing financial products. You see people by with their hearts. And this is why empathy in this digital post. Covid world will be a key competitive advantage for financial brands. And the good news is that digital empathy can be taught. Digital empathy can be learned but this is going to require support and buy in from those left brain driven leaders who might feel just a little bit of disconnect, maybe even a little bit of discomfort because they're operating outside of their natural tendencies. And that's why one of the big formulas that I teach is E. Q. Plus AQ will be greater than I. Q. Put another way. Emotional intelligence plus adaptability will be far greater than intelligence alone. Moving on to the # six Spot in Our Top 10 Countdown is an episode titled Target Fixation transformation is looking where you're going with Jeffrey Kindle. In this episode, Jeffrey actually builds on the insight from our number seven spot with Erik Berg as he recommends. We must forget about banking. Pretty much forget everything that we know if we are going to seek to maximize our future digital growth potential. As we did a lot more thinking about what is it that really makes a product successful? Forget about banking, right? You've got to think like a product company which is you have to provide enough compelling value and a reason for people to come over to your product. And one of the things that we see is a huge mistake and digital banking, it's just standing up a new digital bank with the same features and functions and capabilities and value proposition as your traditional bank. If you're an existing traditional bank trying to start up one or it's so generic that your value proposition proposition, it's just that you're a digital bank. There's no real compelling reason for me to move all my financial relationships over from my traditional bank to the digital bank. And I point to Fin I mean when when Finn kinda Chase customer, when Finn came out, I was really curious about what's going on. I locked in and I was like this is exactly what I have it in my current relationship with Chase. What's new? Why would I, why would I use this? It's...

...not even, there's nothing different about it. And I see that a lot of these digital banks that have started up, it's just, It's almost like their value proposition boils down to hey we're digital. Well, that's not interesting anymore. When simple started 10 years ago, that was a revolutionary thought. No branches though, you know, we don't need any of that. Our collective thinking has evolved massively since then. It's not about being digital, it's about what are you doing to actually improve my life or make my financial life easier or better or healthier or on so forth. And so the reason that that's hard to do to get that value proposition right is that people think too broadly about their market segment. So if I was trying to design a car that served the needs of 300 million people, I'd end up with a pretty lackluster, un interesting car because I have to sort of address everybody's needs. But if I focus on, uh, you know, people who want to go off roading, I can start making more focused products. I can start thinking about designing a jeep, something that's going to look very specific and have a value proposition. Banks are the exact same way. If you think about your customers in this very broad 300 million population in the us, you're not going to have a hook, you're not gonna have anything that's going to be compelling for those people to come over. But if I start focusing on a niche of or a segment of the population, it actually allows me to get to a solution much faster than can be meaningful to them. I really appreciate Jeffrey encouraging financial brands to think about and really even question the value propositions they bring to bear in the marketplace, the positioning of their products in a commoditized market place, and the opportunity when it comes to positioning when it comes to the product is to not think so broadly, but to really focus in really niche down because the riches and a commoditized digital world are truly in the niches and niche market segments. Thanks to digital are in fact, the new local technology has transformed our world and digital has changed the way consumers shop for and buy financial services forever. Now, consumers make purchase decisions long before they walk into a branch, if they walk into a branch at all, but your financial brand still wants to grow loans and deposits, we get it. Digital growth can feel confusing, frustrating and overwhelming for any financial brand, marketing and sales leader, but it doesn't have to because James robert wrote the book that guides you every step of the way along your digital growth journey, visit www dot digital growth dot com to get a preview of his best selling book banking on digital growth Or order a copy right now for you and your team from Amazon inside you'll find a strategic marketing manifesto that was written to transform financial brands and it is packed full of practical and proven insights you can start using today to confidently generate 10 times more loans and deposits. Now back to the show, we're halfway through now, our top 10 countdown coming in at the number five spot is an episode titled Steps to improve your customers financial wellness with Whitney Low when we were talking about, you know, writing this, this white paper and talking about financial wellness. Financial wellness is the key to success for financial institutions to continue to exist. You can't be complacent, You no longer sit back and wait to see what everybody else is doing. You have to be out there taking care of your customers and that's how they're going to continue to thrive and evolve. But part of it is adapting and it's adapting at a much quicker pace than what we have seen in the past. The pandemic showed us anything. It's we have to move faster. Absolutely. And...

...it's that idea that AQ adaptability quotation plus, E. Q. Emotional intelligence is going to they're going to be too competitive advantages. And you talk about this idea of speed, Jan Belen is quoted in the white paper, quote, banks have a window of opportunity to lead in the financial wellness, but they need to move faster if they want to stay at the forefront of this amazing opportunity and and for some clarity sake financial wellness. How is that different than what this industry has spoken about for years? I think with some half truths or not really big commitments behind which is that idea of financial education, financial literacy, How is financial wellness different than financial education or financial literacy? So it's incredibly different. And if you had asked me that question five years ago, I would have told you, you're crazy because I would have been like, oh no, it's all about financial education. And credit unions are big on financial education and they should be. I just don't know if it was absolutely executed in the right manner at different times. Um You know, we have in credit unions, you have a lot of certified financial counselors and things like that, but you've got humans asking other humans questions. So what does that mean? That means? Everybody asked something differently and everybody does something their own way and there's nothing wrong with that. But if you're not asking the same questions consistently and you're not engaging in a consistent manner, it's really hard to have financial education take hold. And so financial wellness, that is, that's just the customer journey to be able to have peace at night when they go to sleep. So not worried about, you know, where they're going to get the money for their next mortgage payment or have their water cut off for their electric cut off or you know, am I going to be homeless? Especially since the pandemic, especially with, you know, people losing their jobs and getting furloughed. So this goes way beyond financial education. You can sit there and talk to them and try to teach them things and, and not that you shouldn't and they want to learn, people want to be good with their finances, but it goes so much deeper than the education. It's how you make my life better. How can you improve my situation? And they're looking for that from their financial institutions. I have been saying this for the past few years and I wrote about it in my book, Banking on Digital growth that I truly do believe financial wellness and really, even more than that financial coaching, financial guidance, Financial Advisory is going to be the next level up for financial brands that want to maximize their digital growth potential. As Whitney noted, you cannot be complacent. It's no longer feasible to just simply rely on providing reactive service, waiting for people to raise their hand. Instead the opportunity for future growth is to take a proactive stance, to take a proactive approach to guide people to coach people beyond their questions and concerns towards a bigger, better and brighter future. Leveling up to the number four spot in our top 10 countdown is the episode titled creating a competitive sustainable advantage with Matt Mongie. In this episode, map shares insights into one of the biggest opportunities coming out of the covid pandemic, which is optimizing the E X. Are put another way, optimizing the employee experience. We can't even think about an employee experience journey without understanding how connected it is strategically to everything else that the organization is doing. So organizations, leadership has to be thinking through, Okay, I'm so worried right now about what our members are going to say, create means what a member is going to be doing or community bank, for example what our what our customers are going to be doing right now. Because the pandemic, we need to make sure we keep making making that dollar. So that has to be on point. We're gonna be taking a look at it, make sure digital is this and this and this and whatever. And it's...

...not wrong. It's it's critical just as critical though, is making sure that that employee experience is nailed down with just as much specificity. Right? What are all those touch points? What are all those portions of those journeys? What are all those stopgaps? What are all the things that are that are happening? They're mapping that out in the exact same way. So when that happens, those folks, you can expect, you can expect one or two things right? Because if they are ignored, you would expect to fall off on the customer or the member side. Members were ignored like that. Well, imagine what is happening right now on employee side, Especially given what 2020 is, it's going to be magnifying that thing. So then it becomes you will see that folks who have been doing the hard work on the culture employee experience side prior to 2020 have employees who are locked in adapting their autonomous and they're pushing forward. Whereas others now they're having to figure it out on the fly and you have folks who are just internally wired that way, then they're able to push through others. Now we're having to figure out, oh my gosh, how do we help these folks along? And it's been you know, a significantly more difficult struggle so much time, so much effort, so much energy has been focused on C. X. Or customer experience over the past few years for the vast majority of financial brands. And I would say that this has been done almost at the expense of the E. X. Or the employee experience. But as we continue moving forward through a post Covid digital first world, I'm willing to bet financial brands that invest heavily in their E. X. Will be the ones that in fact see an exponential return on their C. X. That's because the changes we have experienced through Covid are, I believe are just a preview Of all of the exponential changes that have yet to unfold over the next 3-5 years. Yet alone 10 years for that matter. And change is hard. I get it changes, scary change is painful and a great way to mitigate the risk of change is through a formulaic approach that we teach here at the Digital Growth Institute which is E. X. Plus Hx plus Dx. And that's because a positive employee experience will yield a positive human experience that can be delivered through a positive digital experience. So we are now down to the top three, the top three spot of our top 10 countdown with an episode titled Humanizing the Digital Experience with J. Paultre. And it's funny that this one came up at the top three as J builds upon the formulaic approach that I just noted around E. X. Plus H. X. Plus D. X. Equals growth. Business leaders have not yet figured out how to how to conduct themselves day to day and have relationships of value online, having productive relationships with high value individuals how to do that in a way that grows the relationship because we all know businesses driven by relationships. So we have to learn how to have meaningful rich relationships through our social networks and all the technology that we have, including this kind of this kind of a conversation we're having. Yeah, let's let's dive a little bit further into that because I'm seeing the same things and having some conversations. Even with Ceos for example, of financial brands, they are the leader of the organization. And traditionally speaking particularly the incumbents, not necessarily Fintech, but more so with the incumbents, the leadership looks at social as either a it's a waste of time, be it's a security threat. And so we just shut it down for everyone. Even in this this 2020 year 2021 right ahead and right around the corner. And why is that...

Because you and I know the value. We've seen it in our own businesses, but where are some of these leaders still getting stuck And then what can be done to help really educate and inspire them to say, you know what? This isn't so scary. Here are some opportunities, not only for my organization, but I really think for myself, the individual, the leader of the organization. Well, I mean, I think part of it is how people see those platforms, right? I mean, social network platforms can be used for all kinds of things and people have a tendency to have a narrow view of them. My view is a social network is just a digital. Social network is just another way of having relationships with people, right? And it's, you know, you can have relationships lots of ways. You can need somebody face to face over coffee, you can pick up the phone and call them and have a conversation. You can send an email message to them. Or you can you can log into linkedin on a daily basis and you can go look at their profile and you can see what they're sharing today and you could comment on that and that, you know that intentional activity is actually a very personal way of having a relationship with somebody. And a lot of people don't understand that we're not, we shouldn't be just looking at social networks as places to pipes to shove our marketing messages, including business leaders. That's what they often do. You know, they're promoting their own company stuff. They should be using it to have relationships with people and they don't know how to do it. But it's as simple as that. As simple as paying attention to people and engaging social media is about connecting people with people. And I am truly grateful for all of the relationships, all the connections that I have made over just the past year alone because of social. But to be honest, I'm really confused as to why so many financial brand marketing cells and leadership teams have failed to realize the potential to build relationships digitally. Even digital relationships with people in their local community. There are a few people out there who are doing it, doing it really well and we've had some of them on the podcast. But there is a tremendous amount of opportunity for financial brands to invest in, to train to up skill their marketing cells and leadership teams to really begin to humanize their digital experiences even from building of just their own personal brands. In fact, I believe all transformation that leads to future growth begins with two things. Number one telling the truth about where you've been, where you are and where you could go next on your own digital growth journey and the number two getting the training education that provides clarity so that you can move forward with courage and confidence towards the future growth that you want to create or capture Coming in at the number two spot in our top 10 countdown is prioritizing the digital mindset with Ron Shevlin and Ron notes that the strategic conversations financial brands are having should move beyond the physical versus digital perspective. But really they need to begin focusing on enabling positive interactions with people throughout the marketing cells and service experience. What I've been arguing for years is that it's not about the branch as a channel, it is about how to best enable interaction between the prospect, the customer or the member and the institution, whether it's in a sales or service type of setting or interaction or transaction. Give me a good example of this sort of shift and and the importance of this back in the early two thousands american banker had an interview with the ceo of commerce bank...

...boy, I'm blanking on his name. But he was real famous guy who started the Commerce bank in the seventies in New Jersey and in pennsylvania. Claggett would remember his name right off the bat. It's just you know, I'm getting to that point where I can't remember anybody's name or anything like that. But they had an interview and Commerce Bank wasn't making big investments in the online channel. Back in the early two thousands of american banker asked him why and he said, and I remember this quote. At least he said nobody wants a relationship with a computer. Yeah. And okay. He had a point there, but I wish I could have, you know, countered that because my responses, nobody wants a relationship with a brick. It's not about the brick and mortar and it's not about the computer, it is about access to people. And We're going into 2021. Look at, look at how we are interacting today. We didn't pick up the phone to do this. We're, you know, your your audience isn't looking at us, but we're looking at each other. This is a great way to interact. In fact, I could share my screen, I can show the documents, I could show the statement, I could hold up the receipt. I can do all these things. It's 2021. The better way to interact and access people when the institution is not by me getting up, driving down to the branch, it's by me getting on the computer and building, getting this interaction. So the mindset that's changing is the reality. The realization that computers don't replace the branch in terms of interaction, they supplement the ability to have access to people and facilitate that conversation and that the face to face the human to human interaction is absolutely important, but it doesn't have to be in a physical place with the two parties in the same room. This is really all about access to people. And as you have heard throughout many of these top 10 episodes, access to people no longer has to happen through a face to face interaction at a physical branch location. When you think about connecting people with people Think about this as a choose your own adventure experience. If you recall the book series from the 1980s people what choice? And really people have a choice and those financial brands that provide choice, they provide a path of least resistance based upon where a person is in the buying journey based upon their own preferences, their own like their own feelings, their own emotions. Those financial brands will be the ones that maximize their digital growth potential going forward. Now. We must remember this is important, We must remember this this idea of digital growth, digital transformation. This is not about us, it's not about you, it's not about me, it's not about your financial brand, it's about other people. And we must commit to putting people both account holders as well as prospective account holders at the center of all of our thinking, at the center of all of our doing because that is what human centered growth is all about. So we've made it now. We have made it to the number one spot in our top 10 countdown with a very fitting episode to wrap things up as we celebrate the 1st 100 episodes for the banking on digital growth podcasts. The number one episode that you the dear listener downloaded and streamed the most is doing digital. Why traditional banks must transform with chris skinner and chris touches on one of the most important thoughts here about Ai because there's a lot of fear that I'm seeing and hearing around AI around automation through the coaching and advising I do with financial brand...

...marketing cells and leadership teams. But Ai is that something that we should fear? The Ai machine learning is actually there to augment human interaction, it's not meant to replace it. And I think that this is one of the things that we get fundamentally wrong. A lot of digitalization, particularly in financial services is being cost production and getting rid of staff instead of being augmenting service and giving better customer relationships and customer advice. And when you turn it around to the customer focus, which is actually where we should always start, we shouldn't focus start with the cost focus, we should start with what does the customer need and how are they behaving and how can we be more predictive and servicing them and better at servicing them, Then we can augment our people with much better tools to deal with customers rather than trying to get rid of our people. It's a great point. We should start to be customer focus as opposed to I I guess traditionally would be cost focus. What can we redo to do to reduce cost? Is that a fair statement? I use the line regularly. Again, going back to traditional banks versus digital banks, which is traditional banks tend to push products through channels to get greater share of wallet and cross sell. Whereas digital banks start with the customer journey and need and then build the user experience to be part of a relationship interaction digitally rather than trying to actually sell them anything. The opportunity here once again is for financial brands to put people at the center of all of their thinking, all of their doing with human centered growth. That puts the transformation of people above the commoditized transaction of dollars and cents as you continue to move forward along your own journey of digital growth. Don't think about technology as a way to cut costs because, well that's just the way it's always been done. It's just the way we think about technology but instead begin to view technology as a path forward to argument, to upgrade the employee experience through technology through automation through Ai. And then as a result, you will optimize and upgrade the human experience That will then be delivered through an optimized and upgraded digital experience that guides people beyond their financial stress towards a bigger, better and brighter future. Because at the end of the day, this is why we are on a mission here at the Digital Growth Institute to simplify digital marketing and self strategies that empower financial brands to generate 10 times more loans and deposits. And once again we can work together to make the world one billion times better by guiding one billion people beyond their financial stress once and for all the stress that takes a toll on their health, their relationship, their overall sense of well being towards a bigger, better and brighter future. Where people do feel healthier, they do feel wealthier and most importantly, they do feel happier. Thank you again for tuning into the 1/100 episode of the Banking on digital growth podcasts and thanks for helping make this episode together with me to highlight the top 10 episodes so far. Thanks in part to you, the dear listener, I'd also like to once again thank all the guests that have joined me along this journey so far as well as to my production team for helping to continue to transfer all of this knowledge, all of these insights at scale to the digital growth community. And I'm looking forward to spending even more time with you over the next 100 episodes because we have some very exciting things planned that will be sharing very very soon as always and until next time be well, do good and make your bed. Thank you for listening...

...to another episode of Banking on digital Growth with James, robert, ley. Like what you hear, tell a friend about the podcast and leave us a review on apple podcasts, google podcasts or Spotify and subscribe while you're there. To get even more practical improvement insights, visit www dot digital growth dot com to grab a preview of James, roberts, best selling book banking on digital growth Or order a copy right now for you and your team from Amazon inside you'll find a strategic marketing and sales blueprint framed around 12 key areas of focus that empower you to confidently generate 10 times more loans and deposits until next time, be well and do good.

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