There is nothing more financial services would like to be able to do than predict the future. But the truth is they can only be sure about one thing: that the future will not look anything like it does today. When members/customers’ expectations and technologies change at ever-increasing speeds, the challenge can be daunting, even when Financial services members/customers continues to grow at a record pace. Everyone in the financial sector continues to talk about how personalization is the key to increasing members/customers. The problem is many financial institutions today are still not leveraging strategies or technologies to do so. Why? Personalized lead generation programs can be a massive undertaking, though they can be a game-changer for driving stronger membership/customer growth and product adoption. These platforms allow Financial services to automate marketing campaigns and send reminders to members/customers about a product they may have missed out on, or a product they never even knew they needed, and it’s all based on member searches or requests for information

To thrive in this highly competitive market, Financial services s must embrace analytics as a key component to drive operational efficiencies and grow stronger member relationships. Dynamic Data Analytics is the process of using current data combined with insights to forecast certain outcomes. Dynamic analytics uses monitoring and reporting to accurately plan strategies and campaigns. Many Financial services s are also employing member/customer relationship software (CRM) to alert their marketing and sales team when a lead is close to making a decision. When combined with machine learning and artificial intelligence, identifying qualified sales leads becomes easier over time. Some Financial services s are already onboard and reaping the benefits.

Redwood Financial Services, a $4.5 billion-asset institution based in Santa Rosa, CA, recently hired its first-ever market data analytics manager in May 2019 to lead a team in developing analytic models, market research campaign performance tracking and reporting. The group aims to provide analysis and insight into business and market performance. Data became a core strategy for Redwood about three years ago, noted Tony Hildesheim, the Financial services’ Chief Information Officer. In 2019, he said, RCU is moving to “data part two,” which includes analysis and integrating data into the entire organization.

“We are not doing data for the sake of data, we are trying to understand the behavior of the member,” Hildesheim explained. Redwood isn’t just turning to candidates with science, economics, and finance backgrounds for these positions, he noted. Some of those who have been hired come from social science backgrounds, including psychology and sociology.

“When we are looking at hiring people, we are looking at a combination of skills,” said Hildesheim. “The engagement experience needs to have a human side, not just numbers. The data needs to be in a format people can understand.”