Save up to $1,300 if you register for FinovateSpring before Friday!



Tim Urban
Founder @ Wait But Why
The Rise of the Machines – The Artificial Intelligence Revolution and the Road to Superintelligence. What will AI mean for the future of financial services and the future of work?
LEARN MORE



Michael Butler
President & CEO
Radius Bank


Nicholas Kopp
US CEO
N26


Mashima Chawla
Growth Lead
Square Capital


Secil Tabil Watson
Executive VP
Wells Fargo


Lisa Gold Schier
Group Senior VP
ABA


Rick Winslow
Chief Experience Officer
Kabbage


Ramneek Gupta
Venture Investing
Citi Ventures


Jon Zanoff
Managing Director
Barclays Accelerator

 

Save up to £700 if you register for FinovateEurope before Friday!

Tan Lee

Founder & CEO – EMOTIV


Tan will be joining us in London, sharing how automation, AI and brain augmentation will affect how we think, work, and live. As one of Fast Company’s Most Influential Women in Technology and Forbes’ 50 Names You Need to Know, Tan will show you how automation is an opportunity rather than a threat, as humans and machines become increasingly integrated. With AI already affecting investment, customer engagement, fraud and risk management, stock prediction and even compliance, do not miss Tan’s insights at FinovateEurope 2019.



FinovateEurope Demoing Companies Announced!



Open Banking Summit

Gain insight into how your strategies will need to shift, what impact open banking will have on your work, and how you need to step out of your comfort zone.
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AI Summit

Taking a deeper dive into AI, our dedicated summit day brings you case studies of where AI is being used and having an impact in the industry.
LEARN MORE

*Book by Friday, 30 November and save £700 on the main 3-day event ticket and £200 on the Summit Day add-on. Register for both and save an extra £100.

The ABCs of FinovateEurope Innovation

As 2018 moves into the rearview and 2019 starts to take shape, financial services innovation shows no signs of slowing. At this rapid pace, there has to be at least one category of innovation per letter of the alphabet: A is for artificial intelligence, B is for blockchain, C is for compliance, D is for digital identity, E is for ethereum, F is for financial inclusion, and so on twenty more times. That’s a lot to keep up with.

Finovate’s mission has always been to cut to the core of innovation. We cover fintech for you by reviewing hundreds of services and solutions from across the fintech spectrum, then distilling them into 65+ demos featuring exciting technology with real-world applications. In just two days, you see what’s new, trending, accepted, and contentious.

The demoing companies that will take the stage in February at FinovateEurope reflect financial technology as of today and down the road. We hope you join us for this journey! Tickets to FinovateEurope are available online. Save £700 when you book before this Friday, November 30.

First wave of demoing companies announced

24sessions IQ allows financial services companies to have better banking conversations and maintain compliance using effortless video chat and artificial intelligence.

LEONUS blockchain-based banking digital platform supplies fast easy, modular and secure digital bank deployment without affecting legacy systems through the simplicity of a modular approach and the immutability of blockchain.

ApPello Loan Factory and ApPello Digital Lending Portal simplify the long and expensive credit process for retail, corporate banks, financial institutions and peer large industrial (non-financial) companies using a digital platform which allows 3rd party companies to develop additional features or submodules.

Aqubix‘s KYC Portal solves the operational challenge of due diligence with a state of the art end-to-end solution focused on automating the operational nightmare in such processes.

Avaloq‘s marketplace solves the innovation dilemma for fintechs, banks and bank clients using the avaloq.one ecosystem – “double marketplace.”

Blinking created a reliable, trustworthy, and secure way of creating, handling and confirming client digital identities for banks, telecoms, health providers and insurance companies by using blockchain technology and giving end-users complete control over their private data.

BlueRush, a customer-centric platform, works to address the poor engagement and conversion rates for leading financial institutions with proprietary interactive personalized video software.

Cantab Predictive Intelligence‘s loan approval engine provides profitable and quick lending to customers who are not clients of the bank, with no credit history for retail banks.

CREALOGIX‘s TimeWarp — a unique, interactive and powerful tool — addresses the lack of predictive decision making for all bank customers using cutting-edge UX design and AI technology.

CybiWealth offers a simple international investing solution for forward-thinking individuals.

Dateio solves the hassle associated with today’s loyalty programs for retail customers and banks using in-house developed technology and know-how.

Denizen — a borderless platform for banking — deals with the hassles of international banking for world travelers, expats, immigrants and other global populations using a real time, truly global bank without extra fees.

Dorsum‘s My Wealth mobile app uses a hybrid approach to answer the needs of the new type of investor for wealth managers and investment providers.

Dynamics‘ Wallet Card, an all-digital telecommunications connected loT payment device, uses edge-to-edge paper-thin flexible electronics to address lack of customer loyalty, card fraud and costs associated with physical card issuance for any issuer’s cardholder.

eurobits technologies created a single digital access point that securely connects with every online financial and fiscal data source in Spain for digital services providers that require high-quality real-time data.

FCase is a fraud orchestrator mission control fixing the fragmentation of fraud management and delivering rapid benefits, such as fraud reduction and enabling compliance.

FI.SPAN‘s cloud-based services management platform uses APIs to connect customers and fintechs for financial institutions in the U.S. and Canada.

Five Degrees, a complete end to end retail bank in the cloud, solves time to market, digitisation and operational cost challenges for banks.

Icefire‘s Modularbank aims to solve the resource-heavy challenge of setting up new financial institutions and rapidly launching new products using a module-based integration platform.

IMburse Treasury 4.0, a “transaction as a service” platform, enables financial services companies to efficiently manage and provide payments using cloud-based deployment strategies.

iGTB‘s CBX ‘Contextual Banking Experience’ resolves customer dissatisfaction with the corporate banking experience for transaction banks worldwide using ‘best next offer’ point-of-need bank product offerings.

InnoValor‘s Read ID identity document verification technology solves the lack of mobile onboarding using NFC.

iProov‘s mobile palm authentication supplies a highly usable, strong customer authentication for banks and financial institutions using unique liveness and anti-spoofing technology.

ITMAGINATION redefines the modern investment experience with our advanced financial analytics platform for individuals and institutional investors by leveraging cloud-based tools to build simple and accessible financial analysis.

ITSCREDIT is a credit platform that improves credit processes using an end-to-end product covering all steps.

Launchfire‘s Lemonade combats lagging user adoption rates of digital banking products using game-based learning, production simulations, and role-play scenarios.

LOQR uses an integrated and centralized one-stop-shop approach to manage customers’ digital identity lifecycle in the financial world.

Microblink‘s next-generation identity document scanning and data extraction software targets poor user experience in a growing number of customer onboarding processes.

Minna Technologies is a subscription management platform using open banking APIs and machine learning and integrates into banks digital channels resulting in better customer experience, retention and new revenue streams.

Modular Banking‘s API increases access to, security for, and compliance with cryptocurrency for retail banks using a decentralized network development expertise and proprietary code.

Monobank‘s Mono Pay is an app with state of the art functionality and technology that solves the lack of control of poor outdated payment solutions for modern adults with high demands.

Neo‘s cash management platform supplies access to automated multi-currency accounts for medium to large corporations using restful API code.

Nine Dynamic‘s advanced financial analytics platform redefines the modern investment analysis experience for individuals and institutional advisors by leveraging the latest cloud-based tools and architecture to build simple and accessible financial analysis tools.

Nordigen Report utilizes a transaction-based categorization platform to streamline the global credit-scoring based loan decision making process using existing user data categorization and scoring models.

Qwil Messenger is a global client chat platform that enables safe and compliant business conversations for all professional service organizations from one single app.

REACH offers a SaaS solution to solve poor customer experiences, extended onboarding, delayed transaction cycles, and KYC challenges in the digital age for financial services organizations using a completely web based platform.

Salt Edge‘s Open Banking API Hub solves the interoperability problem between different APIs identifying Payees for payment for licensed third parties (banks, lenders, fintechs) using a single API gateway.

Secfense is a cyber security solution targeting phishing problems for the banking and fintech industry using a 2FA method available on any application.

Taxnology Innovations provides an online tool supplying tax return preparation in various countries for cross-border operating companies.

UX Design Agency‘s user-interface design based on user-experience engineering addresses the complexity and lack of human-centricity in financial products.

W.UP‘s Sales.UP — a digital banking sales and engagement tool — targets financial institutions’ need of customer insights and personalized automated marketing campaigns based on transactional and non-traditional data using Insight Store, Marketing Automation and Data Universe.

Last Chance for FinovateFall Presale Tickets!

iContact header

finovatefall2016_stage_crowdshot

FinovateFall 2017 will be returning to the Hilton Midtown from September 11 through 14, and tomorrow is the last chance to register for a Presale Ticket to save $800. This is the lowest-priced ticket we’ll offer — make sure you register now to lock in the savings!

FinovateFall 2016 was our largest event yet, with more than 1600 attendees on hand to view live demos (no slides allowed!) of exciting fintech innovations. We’re expanding the show this year to offer even more great content.

In addition to the two days of demos, we’re adding another day and a half full of practical advice from your peers and industry gurus alike. These discussions will provide more context around the demos you’ll see on stage and help you incorporate the latest fintech innovations into your product road map. For more information on our expansion, take a look at the agenda or the informational brochure.

Presale Tickets are still on sale for $1,595 through the end of this week. Not only is this the lowest ticket price we offer, but tickets are fully refundable until July 28, so there’s no risk in locking down the price now. Register today!

Marketing: Bank of America Reinforces Digital Banking Features, Benefits

Hotels.com spokesperson "Captain Obvious"
Hotels.com spokesperson “Captain Obvious”

 

Sometimes, the most obvious things are easiest to overlook. For example, despite the importance of mobile (and desktop) functionality for website visitors, some banks, even major ones (Chase I’m looking at you), don’t bother to reinforce their features and benefits. That is probably less of an issue for big brands where most customers assume state-of-the-art digital features are readily available. But community banks and credit unions should have mobile and/or online banking listed in primary or secondary navigation. US Bank has always been good at doing just that.

Recently, BofA has been promoting its online/mobile features with a homepage promotion (see screenshot #1 below). I first noticed it while paying my BofA card Friday, but I don’t know how long it’s been running. Clicking the See popular features link delivers you to a page touting features across three categories: Manage Accounts, Payments and Transfers, and Security. The first five are visible on screenshot #2 below:

  • Set up a travel notice (currently the featured feature across top-half of screen)
  • Check your FICO score
  • Redeem credit card rewards
  • Update your contact info
  • Set up custom alerts

The other 11 (not shown in screenshot):

  • Replace card
  • Go paperless
  • Direct Deposit
  • Reorder Checks
  • Bill pay
  • Transfer and send money
  • Pay with a digital wallet
  • Mobile Check Deposit
  • Lock or unlock your debit card
  • Fingerprint sign-in
  • Security Center

Note: I’m surprised Bank of America’s “deals” aren’t one of the 16 features highlighted. Even though you can’t really make it out, the mobile phone at the top of the landing page (screenshot 2) has the BankAmeriDeals section open along the bottom (note the Starbucks logo).

Bottom line: A good explanation of digital features and benefits should be easy to find on your website and mobile app. Even though the features seem straightforward to power users like yourself, it’s all a big mystery to 95+% of your customers who just want to spend as little time as possible banking.

 

Bank of America invites customers to check out its digital features.
Bank of America invites customers to check out its digital features

 

Bank of America's extensive digital features explainer.
Bank of America’s extensive digital features explainer (link)

Bank-Distributed Content You Might Actually Use from Umpqua, Arvest

Content_marketing_2Discussing bank and credit union blogs seems so last decade. While the hype has certainly died, so-called content marketing is still an effective strategy if done right (remember, less is more).

Just look at Chase Bank’s site, which went through its last major remodel less than a year ago. Once you scroll down the page (below the fold on most laptops), it’s almost entirely general personal-finance content. The section called News & Stories shows 9 to 12 articles initially, or 40 if you click on “more” at the bottom. They run the gamut of what you might see around the Web with catchy titles such “5 Food Trends to Watch in 2016” or “Three Perfect Days in the Greek Isles.”

chase_home_jan2016

Chase has more data scientists and Ph.D.s at their disposal than NASA, and if the bank chooses to devote more than half its homepage to content marketing, you can bet they are seeing engagement, if not yet a measurable sales lift. (While I thought they went too far, cluttering their homepage, I yield to the data).

However, the problem with most corporate-written “content” (not to pick on Chase) is that most of it – from any large organization that’s not a media company – is almost always super boring. Content-by-committee is just too watered down to be compelling to readers, who see hundreds, if not thousands, of more intriguing links and articles every week in Facebook, Twitter, ESPN, NY Times or the other big media outlets.

The best FI-sponsored content sticks to local subjects that aren’t widely available in large media outlets. There are few financial institutions that have stuck to blogging over the long haul, but one that stands out is Arvest Bank. I’ve subscribed to its blog feed for many years, and I’ve found their content to be continually excellent. I’m not in their geographic footprint, so I don’t personally benefit from their insights. But as an outside observer, I think they provide a good mix of local interest material, personal as well as small biz financial advice, and simple updates on their products or holiday hours.

The four most recent posts show up in a feed on their homepage (lower left below):

arvest_homepage_jan2016
Clicking through to an article brings you to their main blog page, which divides the topics into four logical categories: Community News, Arvest News, Business Banking, and Personal Finance (see below):

arvest_blog_home
But blogs and traditional articles are a tough sell, especially to younger customers accustomed to getting info from YouTube, Facebook, SnapChat, and Instagram. That’s why I love the podcasts from Umpqua Bank. They have outsourced the work to a pro SuChin Pak, who interviews interesting people about money subjects (six episodes are archived on Soundcloud). The bank features the podcasts on their homepage (see main image below). The bank also posts some traditional press release news items near the bottom of the homepage (see below):

umpqua_homepage_jan2016
——–
Note:
I can’t write about content market without a shout-out to Tim McAlpine and the team at Currency Marketing who do some of the best work on the planet, for example, the Young & Free campaign aimed at 25-and-unders and its newest effort, That Money Thing.

——-
Top-right image licensed from 123rf.com

Landing Page Love: PerkStreet’s Facebook-like Testimonial Montage

image Not surprisingly, Google served a PerkStreet Financial ad in my Gmail account tonight (8:30 PM Pacific). I barely remember clicking it, but I started paying attention when I saw the virtual bank’s  landing page (see first screenshot; note 1).

PerkStreet uses a clever visual technique, one that’s familiar to Facebook users (note 2; fourth screenshot), a montage of "friends." In this case, they are not actual friends but 53 thumbnail photos each containing a customer testimonial via either webcam (18 of the thumbnails; second screenshot) or static photo with caption (35 thumbnails; third screenshot).

The bank tops it off with two easy-to-see Apply Now buttons. Nicely done. I Like it.

—————————-

Landing page from Google Gmail ad (link)

Perkstreet landing page with "face montage" 

Clicking on a video testimonial launches a popup

Perkstreet customer testimonial (is that Alex?) 

Clicking on a static photo brings up a short written testimonial

Perkstreet static customer testimonial

PerkStreet uses Facebook’s "facepiles" social plugin on its blog (note 2)

Facepiles used on Perkstreet blog

———————————

Notes:
1. I am calling it virtual because they are a pass-through to a third-party bank that holds the funds.
2. See our latest report, Banking on Facebook, published yesterday.

Flash Marketing Addendum: Co-branded Payments

In my post yesterday about flash marketing via Groupon and LivingSocial, I neglected to mention another interesting opportunity: working directly with the marketing companies to add your brand to the service.

imageBecause payments and credit are crucial to ecommerce success, financial brands are a logical addition to the checkout process. And Visa just so happens to be featured today at LivingSocial (see inset and screenshots below).

Anyone who buys today’s Seattle deal, a $25 restaurant certificate for $10, automatically gets a second certificate to use as a gift, if they pay by Visa Signature card (see notes 1, 2). It’s hard to say what Visa is paying for the promotion, but given the massive website traffic and transaction activity, it’s likely a pricey sponsorship (note 3).

Email from LivingSocial with Visa branded add-on offer (28 July 2010)

image

Landing page (link)

image

Notes:
1. Some interesting items in the fine print for the Visa-sponsored comp certificate:
– valid only for Visa Signature cards, which might irritate some non-Signature Visa customers
– offer not valid for purchases made via iPhone (there must be something in the shopping cart that does not work on the iPhone)
2. My saved credit card in the site is a MasterCard; when I went to purchase the deal, there was no mention of the free certificate, nor any prompt to switch to Visa.
3. The merchant is receiving $5 for each certificate issued under the main deal. Visa’s sponsorship would need to cover some compensation to the merchant, but perhaps at less than $5 each, since fewer of the gifted certificates will be redeemed. It looks to be a popular offer, having sold almost 2,600 units (by 7 PM), with almost 10 hours remaining.

Flash Marketing: Can Groupon/LivingSocial Work for Banks and Credit Unions?

imageThe coffee shop where I do much of my writing held a huge sale yesterday. But you wouldn’t have known it from the sparse late-July mid-day crowd. The event took place entirely online through local deal-of-the-day marketer, Groupon.

The day-long sale resulted in nearly 3,000 half-price $10 coupons being sold, a huge influx of customers for a 3-location coffee shop (see screenshot below). I’m working somewhere else tomorrow when the coupon buyers start coming in. 

imageGroupon is the leader in the burgeoning field of localized flash marketing (aka social/group buying) having taken more than $170 million in VC funding to expand to more than 150 cities.

The other major player is Living Social, which I’ve successfully used a few times to buy gifts. LivingSocial has raised $50 million and recently expanded to 52 cities. Both companies have nearly 5 million unique monthly U.S. visitors (see below). And with minimal barriers to entry, there are dozens of copycat sites in operation.

There’s another sub-category in flash marketing, companies that specialize in certain types of merchandise. The pioneer here is the geeky and irreverent gadget and T-shirt marketer, Woot with 2.3 million monthly visitors. The site was scooped up by Amazon for $170 million last month. In women’s fashion, Gilt Groupe has a cult following and nearly 1 million monthly visitors.

U.S. traffic at Groupon (blue), Living Social (green), Woot (orange), Gilt Groupe (red)

image
Source: Compete (link)

Flash marketing is not a new concept, and it’s not much different than the $299 laptop on the cover of the Best Buy circular. Savvy shoppers know to show up early at the store if they want to claim one of the few loss leaders in stock.  

Web-based flash marketers use email, Facebook and Twitter to inform potential customers of the latest deal. There is usually a time limit, typically a single day, and/or a limited number for sale. All the Groupon deals expire at midnight local time. Woot runs all its deals for 24 hours, or until they sell out, beginning at midnight Central Time.

Opportunity for Netbankers
While I haven’t seen a financial product sold on Groupon or LivingSocial yet, there’s no reason it wouldn’t work. In a quick search, the only financial institution participant I found was First Tech Credit Union, a recent recipient of sponsorship recognition in a LivingSocial deal for half-off tickets to the 2010 Bellevue (WA) Jazz Festival (see second screenshot).

But the promotions can be costly. The flash marketing companies typically take 50% of the sales price and require a deep discount, usually 50% or more off list prices. So retailers are getting as little as 25 cents on the dollar in the promotions (see note 1). Quantities can be limited to protect against too many takers.

While financial services don’t lend themselves to online flash sales as well as spa visits or fine dining, there are fee-based services that could work. For example: 

  • Checking account: $15 annual fee (first year) instead of $96 list price (note 2)
  • Credit monitoring: One year for $50 instead of the $150 list
  • Credit report: One 3-bureau report for $10 instead of the $30 list
  • Financial plan: $50 instead of $200 list
  • Prepaid MasterCard/Visa: One $25 card for $15 instead of the $29.95 list (assuming $4.95 issuing fee)
  • Savings account: $50 initial deposit for $15 fee (note 2)
  • VIP banking package: $25 annual fee instead of more than $100 if bought separately (rewards card, premium service, free VIP online banking, credit report, rate discount, etc.)

Or FIs could go the First Tech route and work with local restaurants, theatres, or nonprofits to sell a product bundle. For instance, a $20 dining certificate, 50% off on theatre tickets and a $10 Visa card for $20. 

Groupon Seattle deal-of-the-day at Zoka Coffee Roasters (26 July 2010)

Groupon zoka coffee offer

First Tech Credit Union gets top billing on recent LivingSocial deal (link)

image

Notes:
1. That assumes all coupons are redeemed. But typically a large portion, as much as 50%, go unredeemed. That means fewer new customers in the door, but it also helps limit the amount of discounts that must be honored.
2. The problem with many financial product offers is that not all customers will be approved. But you could offer refunds for anyone declined for a checking account.
3. For more info on selling online, see our Online Banking Report on Lead Generation.