Globally many financial institutions have rolled out their digital products and services, such as Goldman Sachs Marcus platform. These act as digital store fronts for these financial services firms, providing a digital native experience at the users terms. Having created one digital channel product, can be seen to add to the urgency of ushering in a digital overhaul of other channels. Let me give you an example.

A client of ours had launched their digital offering a few years ago, on boarding tens of thousands of clients and generally adopting a successful platform strategy. What happens then, when this digital channel successfully adopts these clients, is that it sets expectations for these users. When they have further needs, such as a new service they are in the market for, what do they expect? They expect the same client centric, smooth user experience they were initially met with.

Often times however, what they get is a cold shower.

The starkest example of this, is initially having the full service delivered completely on the users terms and then later, having to set up a phone conversation where no channels (chat, mobile, even email) are available to the user. And the first phone conversation often ends up being a person who on boards the user, to figure out who to pass them to next. Walking into a branch and doing things in person at this stage, will seem the simpler option, which is by no means a compliment of the process.

When we set the expectations for users, they (and rightly so) expect those expectations to be met in the future as well. And when we do not meet them, we create a bad user experience.

The Opportunity of Digital Sales Channels

Cross selling is second nature to large enterprises, yet when digital channels become the norm, that comes with its own set of rules.

  • Meet the user where they are. Don’t force them into a new process or silo, but tap into their own process and talk to them in the context you first met them.
  • Leverage the data you have. Mindful of restrictions, consent (e.g. GDPR sets out clear ways of getting consent from users), and with this consent, you can become a true enabler of long-term value for your client, driving revenue beyond the initial transaction.
  • Empower your staff to elevate the conversation. Technology exists to bring humans together into meaningful interactions, not to trade paperwork and fill out blankets. Standardizing and streamlining onboarding processes will allow conversations to be meaningful and keep your clients sane.


It’s completely natural that digital transformation starts in vertical segments, solving very clear client problems that drive value. It’s also natural that the next stage becomes relevant when connectivity and communication between new vertical products and old systems start to be warranted. This may happen far quicker than many enterprises realize, given clients will translate one positive client experience to the next and want to explore what other value the service can create for them. This is the ideal situation however, a real opportunity to client lasting client relationships!

The reality as well, is that for true adoption of digital channel strategies, volume will come from translating and integrating existing services to be distributed through efficient conduits. By distributing existing products through efficient sales channels, margins will rise and competitiveness will be driven at the same time as client value.

The Digital Overhaul May Appear Massive, but it’s the Clients Direction

It may seem like a wave that crashes on the organization, but as with most trends driven by client value and demand, the direction is the right one. Client centricity is at the heart of digital transformation and clients will show the way for the services they want, and how they want to consume them. Listen to them.