Identities at Risk –Online Bankers and Brands

May 7, 2015
/   Spotlight

*Disclosure: is powered by Digital Insight Security has long been, and continues to be, a hot topic in the financial services industry. From new tech developments to hackers, security is top of mind...

Fast Facts: Student Loans

January 22, 2013
/   Insights

The Financial Services Roundtable recently released another iteration of its Fast Facts, reliable, bullet-point research about issues facing the financial services industry. Topics span TARP, Dodd-Frank, insurance, lending, retirement savings and more.  Below are some updated Fast...

Cause and Effect: If you build it, will they come?

July 23, 2014
/   Spotlight

Many financial institutions assume that digital banking is lucrative because the most valuable customers happen to bank online. While there is certainly a correlation between online bankers and higher profitability, quantitative evidence suggests that...

Intuit 2020 Report: The Future of Financial Services

April 11, 2011
/   Insights

Today, Intuit released the latest edition of the Intuit 2020 report, Intuit 2020 Report: The Future of Financial Services, which identifies and examines four key trend areas that will  transform the financial services industry...

The Top 10 Trends in the Digital Banking Industry

December 18, 2013
/   Spotlight

2014 is rapidly approaching and as the year wraps, the Digital Insight team has pulled together the top 10 trends in the digital banking industry based on data and trends from studying financial institutions....

Small Business: Perception vs. Reality

November 21, 2012
/   Insights

In the most recent election cycle, like most others before it, the one sector of the economy that got the most attention was small business.  This is the future, we were told by every...

Making Banking Fun: Gamification in Financial Services

August 5, 2013
/   Insights

Recently, the team sat in on American Banker’s webinar, “Gamification in Financial Services: Five Proven Ways to Get an Edge,” which shared how leading brands in financial services have applied gamification to reach...

Technology M&As: The Beats Go On

May 29, 2014
/   Insights

The ongoing fascination with Apple’s $3 billion purchase of Beats Electronics is entirely understandable, because it’s a cool story. However, it also says a lot about what’s going on between finance and tech.

What We’re Reading

May 5, 2011
/   Spotlight

Below are interesting stories the staff has been reading over the past week. What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments section below. Virtual Banking Worlds Provide Tangible Lessons American...

Financial Literacy Month: How are you celebrating?

March 22, 2013
/   Insights

With April approaching, it’s almost time to kick off Financial Literacy Month! Strongly supported by the United States Congress and the Financial Literacy and Education Commission, Financial Literacy Month aims to promote the importance...

It’s been more than 15 years since we started using our phones to do more than just talk. Today, we’re surprised to find anyone who isn’t mobile-savvy, with a raft of apps and capabilities readily available, and Americans already spend almost a quarter of their time, 25%, on mobile devices. In fact, this space has grown so fast over the last decade that it might actually be slowing down.

So why does this market get only 8% of ad dollars spent? Is this equation set to be upended? And if other industries are rapidly moving their ads to the mobile market, should banks and other financial services providers be going the same way?

These are just a few of the issues that leap off the page in the new Internet Trends report from market analyst Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Every one of these reports has been an eye-opener, and this one is no exception. The report—you can find a list of key findings here—is chock-full of critical insights that should be mandatory reading for everyone charged with doing business online, which means just about everyone. The transformation in consumer behavior is nothing short of seismic—again!—and those who don’t change their own practices with it are doomed to fail.

Consider that one stat about spending 25% of our time on mobile devices. It’s not only about time—it entails many short browsing sessions vs. a few long browsing sessions, which in turn means information is consumed in bite-sized pieces. If you’re an industry that has a lot to say—let’s kindly assume financial services falls into this category—it mandates a massive shift in communicating techniques.

Here’s another seemingly simple change. We all know that video is a preferred medium on mobile devices, but did you know that vertical video ads like Snapchat’s are watched in their entirety some nine times more than their horizontal equivalent? This in turn means those gauzy, long-distance establishing shots might be put aside in favor of more close-ups. In fact, you know those five-second ads that can be very irritating? Like carousel ads and integrated buy buttons, they not just real, they’re really effective. Swatting them away is not an option. We need to find ways to make them work better.

Moving up from the consumer to the enterprise, the changes are even more breathtaking. From cash registers to Slack and from paper files and insurance brokers to Zenefits, the goal here is not simply to be more efficient, as in, to do the same things but do them faster. The goal is in fact to do things differently, which in turn allows institutions to offer new products and new services to new markets, all while setting new metrics for success.

And of course, if there’s anyone out there sick of hearing about millennials, get ready, because we’re going to hear a lot more. The importance of this market simply cannot be overstated. It’s coming to dominate the workforce (already making up 44% of the on-demand workforce), has money to spend, and is still making decisions about which institution to go with. We all know these kids and nearly-kids love features like Remote Deposit Capture and other forms of instant gratification. So here are some questions: Is your institution’s user interface millennial-ready? What new capabilities have been developed in just the past year specifically for this audience? What’s the adoption rate for these apps?

Finally, speaking of overplayed issues, let’s talk Big Data. The report lays out the case for the brave new world we now inhabit by making it clear that in just a few years, we’re going to realize just how uninformed we still are, in 2015, when making decisions. Think we’re advanced in using actionable intelligence to guide business initiatives?  Think again.

Sure, the digital generation is so dynamic as to always be changing, and each new report like this captures only a moment in time. But appreciating that reality on an intellectual level and applying it to routine best practices are two different things. We’re always evolving, and that’s good—in fact, the report states that industries like ours have changed much faster than, say, government, health care and education.

So yes, we’re changing. But are we changing fast enough?



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James W. Gabberty

Gabberty is a professor of information systems at Pace University in New York City. An alumnus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and New York University Polytechnic Institute, he has served as an expert witness in telecommunication and information security at the federal and state levels and holds numerous certifications from SANS & ISACA.

Marisa Mann

Marisa Mann brings over 15 years of experience in consulting and financial services industries to the Solstice team, working on large scale enterprise initiatives across many technologies, including specializing in the digital space – Internet and mobile. Mann is passionate about mobile and the endless possibilities for the enterprise, delivering business value through strong brand recognition and driving to excellence in the consumer experience. Prior to Solstice, Mann worked at JP Morgan Chase, Diamond Management and Technology Consultants, Washington Mutual, Inc, and Accenture.

Zachary Ehrlich

25-year-old writer, and as a native San Franciscan, I am unreasonably loyal to Bank of America, if only for their superhero-like origin story, involving the 1906 earthquake and Italian fruit vendors.

Brad Strothkamp