Digitalisation is the be-all and end-all of our time. Yet sometimes things just have to be analog, like at our traditional Contovista Community Meeting – a casual "Friends & Family" event that we simply love. In 2021, we discussed the topic of “Open Banking Quo Vadis” online. The last time we were in person was so long ago!
The 2022 meeting, however, was held in person in Zurich. On the 16th May, an exclusive group of around 60 guests met for an exchange of ideas, three presentations, a panel of experts and, of course, an aperitif. The topic was “How Swiss banks can stay relevant and top-of-mind today!”
The venue was the Folium im Sihlcity – a truly perfect location. On the site of the former paper factory, industrial and media history (paper production!) encountered a spirit of optimism and creativity. After being used for industrial purposes, creative artists tried out new ideas there at the beginning of the 2000s. And now, in Sihlcity, experts presented us with ideas on the burning question of why and how banks should increase their relevance for customers – as well as dealing with the pressing megatopic of sustainability. Here’s a brief review for all those who were unable to attend.
New Needs Call for Fresh Approaches
The keynote address given by Wim Roelfs from Accenture Song immediately highlighted the problem: evolving customer needs mean banks have to change their services. Without them, established banks will only become less and less relevant. Today, 70 percent of consumers want digital banking services instead of visiting a branch. 50 percent are also prepared to share more personal data – provided this leads to digital banking as well as more relevant offers with good usability and maximum transparency.
After all, this is what customers have long been accustomed to from digital players like Amazon, Uber & Co ("perceptual competitors"). What’s more, they are already experiencing it today with new digital financial providers such as Klarna and Robinhood ("experiential competitors").
The solution: banks must think and act in an even more radically customer-centric manner. In other words, they must consistently make the customer experience as relevant to everyday life as possible – even going beyond traditional banking services. It is time to raise the curtain on the sustainability megatrend!
Living Out Sustainability – With Personalised Support From a Sustainability Professional
So how exactly does customer centricity work in banking? Daniel Dellham, CTO of our Swedish sustainability partner Deedster, gave a clear answer to this question in the second expert address, namely through sustainability. This megatrend is a hot topic for consumers – and not just for Millennials and Generation Z. 64 percent of all consumers regard sustainability as an emergency issue. If they have the right information, they’ll act accordingly and purchase green products. This is anything but greenwashing: 70 percent of greenhouse gas emissions are directly linked to private consumption.
However, always making the right sustainable consumption decisions poses quite a challenge in day-to-day life. This is exactly where Deedster comes in, using digital banking as a lever. Through Open Banking and external data sources, an individual’s entire consumption behaviour can be analysed in detail to determine their carbon footprint. This provides customers with a transparent, comprehensible and, above all, individually tailored carbon footprint as well as the opportunity to effectively change their actions for the better.
Deedster’s technology generates data-driven insights and provides actionable recommendations. The personal climate contribution is visibly optimised. Quizzes, peer comparisons and challenges make dealing with this serious topic a little more fun through gamification. Deedster is now the market leader in Scandinavia. Large partnerships, such as with SEB Baltics (6 million customers), demonstrate the huge untapped potential here. In Switzerland, Deedster partners with Contovista – and the first implementation projects are already in the starting blocks.
Banks as a Digital Partner: Relevance at the Touch of a Button
In the third address of the evening, we at Contovista explained how the implementation can be successful in practice, namely through the integration of a Personal Carbon Manager. The Deedster solution is integrated into the Contovista Financial Cockpit via an API, which in turn is directly integrated into e-banking. Categorised and refined transaction data from the Enrichment Engine ensures that the database is correct, i.e. using Swiss figures and not global data.
With the solutions from Deedster and Contovista, providers can address the private concerns and wishes of their customers and position themselves as competent advisors with regard to these important life issues. Banks have the relevant information thanks to account access, while consumers also place the necessary trust in their proven house bank.
In line with the motto "Understand, Coach, Enable", institutions generate tangible added value for bank customers thanks to Contovista's solutions. And, of course, for themselves as well: customer loyalty is strengthened, the interface is protected, new green products can be marketed and banks are one step further along when it comes to everyday banking.
Even if sustainability is the megatrend par excellence, for data-driven banking it is one use case among many. This is what we are working on at Contovista – together with the Swiss banking software provider Finnova, who has just recently acquired us.
The Next Meeting Will Not Be Long in Coming
The Contovista Community Meeting 2022 was a resounding success – an exciting evening full of information, discussions and networking. We’re now looking forward to the next meeting! We’re also excited by our cooperation with Deedster, which will now be gradually expanded with new features for our Personal Carbon Manager. You can find all further news about this on our blog.