Zoom on FinovateSpring 2017

FinovateSpring 2017 wasn’t like most conferences. With just two days to deliver value to the 1,200+ attendees from nearly 100 finance, insurance, consulting, and technology businesses, you might expect a jam-packed schedule of panel discussions and keynote presentations.

But Finovate takes a different approach. Instead, FinovateSpring gave 59 companies a chance to present their innovative new products for 7 minutes each—no sales pitches, just a demo of your product’s relevance. The pressure of digital transformation is weighing heavy on the financial services industry and FinovateSpring gave business leaders a chance to assess strategic business solutions.

After listening to all of the presentations (and getting feedback on our own Layer demo), I learned there are 5 pain points that financial services firms are focusing on.

The 5 Pain Points Pushing Financial Services to Go Digital

The root of digital transformation problems for large financial services firms is the need to rethink customer conversations. Attacking specific points of friction in customer conversations can lead to easy wins for companies that have struggled to keep pace with digital competition.

I spoke with many different financial services stakeholders and the following 5 pain points kept coming up in conversation:

  1. Consumer expectations have already changed, meaning customer conversations need to transform right now in 2017.
  2. Depending on phone and email to connect with customers isn’t working.
  3. Desktop-based sign-up forms don’t sell loans or credit cards effectively.
  4. Consumers are only using existing digital experiences to check balances—but they want advice and expertise in these channels.
  5. Customers have multiple entry points and points of contact within the organization but can’t centralize their conversations.

These problems are much bigger than any specific point in the buyer’s journey. They require complete business solutions rather than a tech tool that solves just one point of friction or applies to one use case. That was our focus for the Layer demo.

How Layer Fits into Digital Transformation for Financial Services

We know that the flexibility of the Layer platform can help companies think of very diverse sets of use cases and eliminate friction throughout the whole buyer’s journey. In the 7-minute presentation, it was important to convey that messaging isn’t just another feature for digital transformation — it’s a way to unify conversations and remove silos around existing communication channels and people within an organization.

Layer Loan Onboarding Example from Ivy Montgomery on Vimeo.

After our presentation, these were the aspects of Layer that seemed to resonate most with the audience:

  • Connecting with High-Value Clients: It’s hard to get ahold of high-value clients that are always on the move. Our team ran through a mock conversation between a financial advisor and a client to show how messaging technology can reach customers conveniently.
  • Support for Multiple Channels: You can’t transform customer conversations if you don’t support multiple channels. We showcased how financial advisors can start a conversation via SMS and move that conversation to a mobile browser environment seamlessly.
  • Ability to Provide Real Financial Advice via Mobile: With Layer messaging, financial services firms can use rich media cards to efficiently review portfolio performance, help select a charity to donate to, schedule follow-up calls, establish post-call action items, and more.
  • Messaging Is More than Just Text-Based Communication: Individual features of the platform are important, but what really resonated was our focus on eliminating email/phone silos, our ability to support next-gen cognitive technology, and the ability to integrate with backend systems like SFDC and Zendesk—all within a central messaging environment.

We’re excited about the potential for Layer to help financial services firms reach their digital transformation goals by redefining customer conversations. If you want to learn more about what we can do for the financial services industry, contact us today for a free demo of the platform.