Advisers take note!
Financial services are experiencing a transition that will determine which companies will still be around to serve customers in the coming years. Leading banks have been steadily shutting down their branches and transitioning their customers to online portals and virtual assistants where they can operate at 50% less than it would cost for those same transactions being done at a physical location.
With HSBC cutting over 25,000 locations worldwide and Bank of America closing 1,400 branches in the United States, the financial services industry is taking note of their next move. Besides offering faster and easier digital products, companies like Barclays have introduced video banking which allows customers to talk to advisers 24 hours a day.
Financial institutions are also using technological innovations like VideoSign to meet online, present information, sign paperwork, and store the meeting recording under the client record in their CRM to efficiently and conveniently close business in a single meeting without the need to physically meet with a banking representative. The companies who are prepared to conveniently and efficiently service customers worldwide are the ones who will thrive in the digital age.
The transition of financial services in the digital age can be likened to the transition of the music industry. Consumers went from listening to music on vinyl to cassettes to CDs to using no physical product at all. However, consumers today still listen to music albeit via streaming services online. The large music industry companies denied that digital streaming would become viable because they were entrenched in a traditional business model while technology and consumer demand were changing the world around them. Companies like Spotify, Amazon Music, and Deezer quickly changed revenue and distribution models for the music industry.
Fintech is performing the same transformation in financial services today.
Advisers and their companies must prepare themselves to face these same decisions to transition to meet consumer demand. There will always be a need for the financial services industry. However, your customers are moving to digital channels, and we all know that history has a way of repeating itself.
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