The keys to fighting fraud?

September 8, 2016
/   Insights

We're constantly being warned that fraud is one of the biggest threats facing the banking industry, but the true scale of this was revealed by a recent survey that suggests it could make up...

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...

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...

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....

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...

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...

What We’re Reading: Thanksgiving Edition

November 22, 2012
/   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 or Tweet @bankingdotcom. Mobile Thursday? Plans for Thanksgiving...

Ever meet people who can’t remember what life was like before mobile devices? It actually kind of makes sense, since cell phones (at least the type meant only for talking) have been around for nearly 20 years. More worrisome are the kids who can’t remember a time before social media. Has it really been that long? (Well, some of those channels are in their second decade.)

But you want to feel really old? Imagine what it’ll be like when you meet kids who can’t imagine when Facebook actually had words. And according to some, that time is a-comin’.

It was only a few months ago that, while announcing a raft of new features and capabilities, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg made clear just how important video will be to the flagship platform. Turns out that was just a preview: Another Facebook executive, EMEA operations chief Nicola Mendelsohn, recently predicted that within five years Facebook “will be definitely mobile, [and] it will be probably all video.”

Ok, so maybe predicting the end of the written word is a tad bold, if not laughable. But it does point to a singular characteristic that is of vital importance to the banking (and perhaps every other) industry. And it has to do with the dreaded ‘m’ word: Millennials.

This is a demographic that is absolutely vital, and maddeningly elusive. To understand the problem, consider baby boomers: We know they represented upward mobility, heightened consumerism, a greater focus on health, and so on. The folks from Generation X, meanwhile, built on a personal identity shaped by being left alone after school, higher education, expanded ethnic diversity, and a lack of reverence for traditional norms and practices.

That’s simplistic to be sure, but there are definitely identifiable and generally agreed-upon characteristics for each demographic generation. It’s always been that way.

When it comes to millennials, however, it’s very different. Every aspect is incredibly dynamic—whatever the people in this category do today, they probably won’t be doing tomorrow. Preferences and habits can turn on a dime, and it’s up to the enterprises pursuing their business to keep up.

This helps explain, for example, why loyalty is so fleeting. According to Gallup’s most recent report, barely 25% of all millennials feel an emotional attachment to a brand. (Baby Boomers, by contrast, came in at 33%). More specifically, less than a third, 31%, profess any connection with their financial service provider. For what it’s worth, other industries have it even worse: only 20% have an affinity to a hotel chain or other hospitality provider, while 12% expressed engagement with airline companies.

Small wonder, then, that according to the most recent FICO survey, 22% percent of US consumers say they’ll move an account after a fraud incident, 14% have written a negative social media post about a fraud incident, and 25% of millennials in particular will write a negative post on social media about a fraud incident. This is the new normal.

Or consider the complexities related to enterprise software. This is a generation that’s perpetually wired—at ease with every emerging form factor and every application, as well as the changes they necessitate. Yet corporations in every industry spend billions on developing and customizing apps and tools, then find that they go largely unused. That’s primarily because these sophisticated tools automatically seem antiquated compared to the ease and user-friendliness of LinkedIn, Facebook and Siri.

In a different time, most business users would have understood why enterprise software is more complex than the average consumer app. Yet today’s prototypical professionals—who are far more comfortable with technology than their predecessors—reject tools that require a steep learning curve, no matter how expensive they were to develop, or how valuable they might be to getting the job done. Companies like Sapho are basing their business model on this very assumption.

Which brings us back to the question of Facebook video.

With 1.65 billion monthly active users (those who have logged in within the last 30 days) as of the last quarter, this isn’t just the most popular social network, it’s likely the world’s most commonly used application. Changes on the platform don’t occur in a vacuum—even a ripple here can cause a wave in every other channel and app.

So let’s say just a third of Facebook users—somewhere in the 500 million range—go all-video within the next five years. What will the expectations be of other tools and practices? What other kinds of software will have to go video too?

Sure, it’s entirely possible that Facebook itself won’t be around then, that it will have been supplanted by other platforms we haven’t even emerged yet. But that’s kind of the point—user practices will have changed no matter what the platform is, and enterprise capabilities will have to change with them. Are we ready?


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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.

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.

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.

Brad Strothkamp