Accelerating Personalization At Scale For FSI

Mar 3, 2022 3:00 PM4:00 PM EST

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Key Discussion Takeaways

Are you looking for a way to deliver content, data, and commerce experience to create meaningful results for your consumers? With the recent shift to digital transformation in financial services, how can you deliver personalized results?

Consumers want more control over how their data is used, which is why transparency is key for creating exceptional consumer experiences and establishing privacy and trust. How can you deliver exactly what the consumer wants? Know your customer and their specific needs and invest in management tools to accelerate optimization and increase your return on investments.

In this virtual event, Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson sits down with Sarah Ohle, Vice President of Strategy at Hero Digital, and Christopher Young, Director of Financial Services Industry Strategy at Adobe, to discuss the consumer value of personalization in financial services. Together, they discuss the four pillars of personalization, the advantages of artificial intelligence (AI) and product automation, and how to show value and personalization in consumer data.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:


  • Sarah Ohle introduces Hero Digital and how they’re building relationships with brands to produce high-quality content
  • What are the four pillars of personalization and how can you utilize them?
  • How to unlock the full potential of artificial intelligence (AI)
  • Factors that drive specific consumer behaviors
  • Christopher Young discusses the digital asset of product automation for consumer education
  • Why you need to show value to motivate the consumer to share information
  • The benefits of customer data personalization
  • What are other industry trends and consumer interaction expectations?
  • Aligning your internal teams for digital transactions and engagement
  • How to find balance in personalization for consumers
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Event Partners

Hero Digital

Hero Digital is a leading independent customer experience company focusing on business, design, and technology.

Connect with Hero Digital


Adobe Experience Cloud is the most comprehensive suite of customer experience management tools on the market. With solutions for data, content delivery, commerce, personalization, and more, this marketing stack is created with the world’s first platform designed specifically to create engaging customer experiences. Each product has built-in artificial intelligence and works seamlessly with other Adobe products. And they integrate with your existing technology and future innovations, so you can consistently deliver the right experience every time.

Connect with Adobe

Guest Speakers

Sarah Ohle

VP of Strategy at Hero Digital

Sarah Ohle is the Vice President of Strategy at Hero Digital, a digital consulting agency that offers digital marketing and strategies to consumers around the world. Sarah has worked in various executive-level positions for marketing companies. She was previously the Vice President of Marketing Insights at GroundTruth and the Director of Custom Research at The Nielsen Company. She is a graduate of the UCLA Anderson School of Management with a master's in marketing and Middlebury College with a bachelor's in psychology. 

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Christopher Young LinkedIn

Director, Industry Strategy and Marketing at Adobe

Christopher Young is the Director of Industry Strategy and Marketing at Adobe. In this role, he leads a team of industry specialists who work with Adobe’s financial services clients to help them develop best-in-class digital marketing strategies. Christopher has an extensive background in cross-channel marketing, brand management, and creative development, previously serving as the Vice President of Brokerage Marketing for E*TRADE and the Vice President and Advertising Manager for JPMorgan Chase.  

Event Moderator

Sarah Ohle

VP of Strategy at Hero Digital

Sarah Ohle is the Vice President of Strategy at Hero Digital, a digital consulting agency that offers digital marketing and strategies to consumers around the world. Sarah has worked in various executive-level positions for marketing companies. She was previously the Vice President of Marketing Insights at GroundTruth and the Director of Custom Research at The Nielsen Company. She is a graduate of the UCLA Anderson School of Management with a master's in marketing and Middlebury College with a bachelor's in psychology. 

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Christopher Young LinkedIn

Director, Industry Strategy and Marketing at Adobe

Christopher Young is the Director of Industry Strategy and Marketing at Adobe. In this role, he leads a team of industry specialists who work with Adobe’s financial services clients to help them develop best-in-class digital marketing strategies. Christopher has an extensive background in cross-channel marketing, brand management, and creative development, previously serving as the Vice President of Brokerage Marketing for E*TRADE and the Vice President and Advertising Manager for JPMorgan Chase.  

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Need help with something else?

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution.

Senior Digital Strategist Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson runs the group & connects with dozens of brand executives every week, always for free.

Schedule a free consultation call

Discussion Transcription

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  0:18

Happy Thursday everyone. I'm Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson, a digital strategist here at BWG Connect and we are a network and knowledge sharing group, we stay on top of the latest trends, challenges, whatever it is that is shaping the digital landscape. We're on track to do at least 500 of these webinars this year, due to the increase in demand to better understand everything digital, and we will be doing at least 100 small format in person dinners this year. So if you happen to be in a tier one city, feel free to shoot us an email these dinners are typically 15 to 20 people having a discussion around a specific digital topic, and we'd be happy to send you an invite. We spend most of the time here at BWG talking to brands to learn about the different trends, we'd love to have a conversation with you. So feel free to contact me at Tiffany And we can get some time on the calendar. These calls are really important because it's how we generate the content for our future discussions. And it's also where we gain our resident experts, such as Hero Digital, and Adobe, who's here today, anybody that we asked to teach the community, it has come highly recommended from different brands within our network. So if you ever need any recommendations for any services, feel free to contact me we have a short list of the best of the best service providers in the digital space that I'd be happy to share the information with you. We also know that a lot of people are hiring right now. So do note that we have a talent agency, BWG talent that I can also put you in contact with if needed. A few housekeeping items. We want this to be as educational and conversational as possible. So please put your questions comments into the chat bar or if you feel more comfortable, you can always email me at we'll be sure to get to them throughout the duration of the presentation. And note that since we started about three to four minutes after the hour, we will wrap up at least four minutes before the end of the hour, give you ample time to get to your next meeting. So with that, let's roll and learn about accelerating personalization at scale for FSI. The team at Hero Digital and Adobe have been great friends, partners, supporters of the network, I will kick it off to you, Sarah and Chris, if you can give a brief introduction on yourself. That'd be awesome. And we can get into the information. Thank you.

Christopher Young  2:36

Thanks. And thanks for having me, Christopher Young on the director of industry strategy and marketing for financial services at Adobe. So I am more aligned to our enterprise digital experience business. And I work closely with a lot of our financial services customers, you know, from banking to insurance to wealth and asset management, and sharing best practices on topics like personalization at scale. And

Sarah Ohle  3:03

I'm Sarah Ohle, I'm VP of strategy at Hero Digital. I'm based out of Minnesota for any of you who heard our sort of pre chat before we got into the webinar. But I do work with clients across the country and across a bunch of industries including financial services, to help understand their customers, their businesses, and ultimately apply strategies like personalization to make their digital marketing efforts as impactful as possible. For those of you before we get into the content who aren't familiar with Hero Digital, world leading independent digital customer experience company, so we operate what we say is the intersection of business design and technology. Most importantly, we lead with a customer first approach rather than technology or process. So we believe that the best outcomes are going to come from wrapping initiatives around the needs of the customer. By starting with the fundamental truth that the customer experience, we're able to design beautiful experiences that speak directly to these needs, and therefore deliver value and impact for your business. In terms of how we're organized we organize to help brands create moments of what we call truth and beauty, that unlock new business growth by helping CMOS do three big things, invent, transform, and perform. Invent is digital invention that's turning digital business opportunity to new CX ideas. Transform is experienced transformation. So manifesting customer experiences through design technology. And then finally, the PErforM piece is marketing performance. So accelerating growth results through connected experience ecosystem. And then finally, for our relationship with Adobe, we're proud to have partnered with Adobe Since our founding in 2014. We work across the entire experience cloud because Adobe solutions allow us to deliver on this vision that we have for our clients They and their customers as well. And we're also thrilled that we've been named Adobe's emerging solution Partner of the Year for the Americas in 2022. So, really great honor, the award recognizes the value and experience that we're able to bring to our clients with Adobe. So, now that we're past that feel, let's get into why you are all here today, which is the topic of personalization. So when it comes to measurement and personalization of it's really easy to start, but it's difficult to master. So despite this, many organizations can struggle with taking that first step. So we recommend focusing on four key pillars to ensure that you have a strong foundation in your personalization program. The first is customer understanding, this is probably the most obvious. In order to have an experience that's personalized, you need to first understand who your customer is who you're personalizing for. The second pillar is this idea of moments based experience. So this takes that understanding a layer deeper, to not only understand the customer, but also their full context, the full experience that surrounds them. So it's going to focus on a deep understanding of key decision points in the customer journey. The fourth pillar is a really important one, privacy and trust. So this is an area that's becoming more and more relevant and critical for our all companies when you talk about tactics like personalization. And finally, we're going to touch a little bit on industry specific needs. So while many approaches and techniques are going to remain the same across industries, there are different considerations when you're personalizing for financial services versus retail versus healthcare. So keeping in mind how your audience interacts with you, and your peers in the industry is key. And it's also key to think about how they're interacting with people outside of your industry. So just looking for those nuances within in different markets. So we're going to dive into each of these four pillars a little bit more deeply. So the first pillar customer understanding, as I said, a personalized experience is going to begin with understanding who you're personalizing the experience for. So in order to personalize an experience that speaks to your specific customer needs, you're going to want to uncover layers of human truths, but behind these customers, so what motivates them, what brings them joy, what frustrates them, you can get this through interviews, surveys, social listening, anything that gives you that voice of the customer. From there, the next step is viewing the the customer experience in the context of cultural and marketing market conditions, this is going to provide an additional insight into drivers and opportunities. So this could be anything trend analysis, competitive audits, expert interviews, whatever it's going to take to really get that full, full picture the full context surrounding who that person is. Then, by tying these insights together into a powerful story, you're going to build up True, true view that's not only shedding light on your customer, but also how to add business value based on the story. And then, through deep knowledge of all phases of design and deployment, you can strategically apply these insights and evolve and iterate on what you find. And all of this is going to allow you to design experiences with humans at the core. So a great example of this from the financial services perspective is if you look at customers through different generational needs, so we've dug into this a lot, this comes up quite a bit with some of our smaller, smaller regional banking clients is saying, we have an aging customer base, we want to understand how to both design products that speak to them, as well as the emerging millennials, Gen Z audiences. So what we're able to do is really dig into these customer needs and get at the thought of, okay, what's driving their behavior? Is it really, some people prefer branch interactions, some people prefer digital and generally it's, it's a little bit deeper than that there. What we found, for example, is that boomers are really motivated by relationships. So when you're thinking about technology for boomers, it's going to be how can we use technology to enhance those relationships, whereas Millennials are going to be really motivated by convenience. So that's kind of like the more traditional thinking of how we talk about FinTech and applying tech and financial services. So just one example of the types of audience analysis that you want to do in terms of understanding not just the customer, the context around them and the whole story that builds to so understanding your customer is going to be that foundation. But how do we continue to evolve and activate on this understanding. As brands are more and more dependent on first party data, the challenge of managing and activating this data increases, simply capturing traffic and data sources isn't going to give you that complete view of your customer, you need to know how to apply it. So I'm going to walk through a couple of those tools hear the first this idea of customer data management. So the more you can align your marketing focused customer data with enterprise data management practices, the more you're going to be able to unlock insights and activate customer touch points. So customer data platforms are CDP's are becoming more and more integral as a tool for solving this challenge. The second piece journey analytics for this is going to allow you to focus more on journeys than point personalization. So product recommendations are going to be a great start. But as the journey becomes more complicated, a deeper understanding, is going to allow you to find new ways to unlock value. An analogy that most people can relate to is the process of getting a mortgage, for example, from the Financial Services point of view, simply personalizing the right mortgage product, that's a great start. But anyone who's been through the process knows that the actual mortgage is only the start the journey is then going to require engaging with the bank, other third parties, realtors, sellers, realtors estimators. So understanding how to optimize that journey and reduce friction is going to require measurement personalization beyond just that initial recommendation of a particular type of mortgage. So we're gonna dig into a little bit more on that when we get into the moment space marketing. The next tool here we want to talk about though, is digital intelligence. So digital intelligence tools are going to go beyond customer interactions with digital touch points. To align with data streams from other sources, the more data points in general that a brand can connect, the more effective personalization they can provide. So some of these sources may include your own walled gardens, things like support or engagement, communities, sensors, bots, IoT devices, digital assistants, cloud services, new sort of services, anything really that helps add that additional context that we keep talking about.

And then the final piece here is artificial intelligence. So we have a lot of conversations with companies who want to start with AI. Data is the fuel that's going to power AI and machine machine learning. So focusing on getting the first three ingredients in place is going to position you to truly activate on AI. When you have these first three things, the see the customer data management, Journey analytics, digital intelligence, that's the foundation and you're well positioned to start activating, learning to unlock new insights and automate select tasks. When you have all four in place. AI is going to accelerate or eliminate your manual tasks and provide new and deeper insights for you and your team. I'm going to pause I'd love to Chris, hand it over to you and see if you have any thoughts on this idea of how to really get a great deep understanding of your customer.

Christopher Young  13:05

Yeah. from Adobe's perspective, so far, this is fantastic context. From our perspective, we're dealing more with the mechanics of this right as a technology company. So you know, the first thing I'll start with is just this idea of what the state of personalization is today with financial services, which a lot of the marketers are very good in very specific areas of the journey, right? specific areas that are within their jurisdiction, like the public side or paid media. And they're more geared towards, say, acquisition or product sales. And I think what we're getting at here, right with this concept of experience at the center, right is to deliver on that you have to think more end to end, right. So you're gonna have to deal with more data sources, like product ownership, or signal, say, from transactional data, you know, transactions going up balances going down, those are meaningful indicators. And then more, you're going to talk more about this, but the content that you need to produce to personalize and the channels that you have to extend to. So when you look at some of these customer data management, there was a question around data mining, the way that we look at it is more about data assembly, data ingestion, for really specific types of data that you need for experience purposes. So your understanding of the customer based on your first party data and your understanding of their relationship, behavioral data that they express when interacting with you interactional data, like from different channels, like call centers, for example, and then unifying that in a way that can be used for you know, multiple touchpoints in the journey. So as an example, we have a bank that we work with, it's a little further north, and they're using first party cookies to connect their customer data from and their profiles from past and past behavior from customer engagement. They're multiple IDs that exists within the organization. So now they can assemble those and more business units and different products and services can use it, they can deliver customized experiences both digitally, and in person interactions like ATMs. And they use even real time scoring right from their first party data that would drive those interactions. And that led to an increase in conversions. As an example, like one and a half to 2x, and digital channels, the two more things. Journey analytics is really important, you know that we have a saying that, if experience is the new brand, then journey is the new product, right? And you can't improve that product if you can't measure it end to end. So when we look at journey analytics, we think about, again, ingesting data from those different interaction points, call centers, branches, paid media, chat, web, mobile, and then allowing you to sequence them in time, right? So what is the order in which those channels were interacted with down to a segment, or individuals, and then help you visualize that journey. And our customers look for breaks in digital journeys, right. So I'm trying to do something online, what's causing me to either stop or leave and go to another channel that in many cases could be more costly. And I do have an example of that. But one thing I do want to add around AI just to be a little bit more specific around some of the use cases that we see our customers using. A lot of it has to do with intelligence about the customer and attribution. So where can I take that data that you were talking about Sarah, and understand more influential factors that drive specific behaviors, so using propensity scores for say, churn or conversion, but a key thing for us is activating that. So how can I append those scores those traits to a profile that you can then use? And then lastly, attribution just simply looking at, you know, crediting specific touch points that lead to conversion that allow you to up to, you know, optimize your budgets, or your campaigns? That was super happy?

Sarah Ohle  17:00

No, and I think that's a great point on on AI, because this has come up a lot of the times that we talk about it, or personalization in general, with clients is the idea of AI sounds, I think, a little bit intimidating. But the way you put it, Chris is exactly right. It's really a lot of a lot of machine learning. It's applying, like what we're learning and iterating on it, to customers from that.

Christopher Young  17:25

I mean, I'll even give you another example. Because you're absolutely right, every time like, you know, there's a lot of casual use of AI, you know, just, you know, use AI machine. So we have an example of a customer that was presenting with us at our summit. And what they did was they had a specific set of titles on their homepage. And although the our AI capabilities did was simply reorder the tiles to the segment that was visiting, to increase response, so it wasn't like, you know, heavy use of, you know, personally identifiable information, it was just okay, if small business or, you know, if it's a private bank customer, like, what is the order, because the creative teams had assumptions on what those were, but they were just they were proven wrong by artificial intelligence, and then the response that they got after the fact. That's great example,

Sarah Ohle  18:14

I might use that in future conversations. While my session is here. Ah, awesome. We'll do. So

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  18:29

he might be on mute, Sarah. I was definitely

Sarah Ohle  18:31

on mute. So the next pillar, the moments based experiences, this is really building on everything that we were just talking about. It's focusing on a deep understanding of key decision points in the customer journey. That commute minds like automatically going on mute, I'm not putting myself on it. That's very weird. up right, let's the day off. Yeah, apparently tired. So the broader context of a customer journey is going to help add to the effectiveness of personalization. On the right, you can see a pretty expensive example of a customer journey from awareness to retention. So all of the touch points, potential content, technology usage and data collection along the way. And this is going to create a really robust picture of what somebody goes through. So that example that I use before for a mortgage, you're not just even talking about when they become aware of a brand, when they start talking to mortgage brokers, when they actually sign on for the mortgage, you have it all the way through retention and like keeping that relationship going. So you can see not only where you're going to be able to take in data to personalize that journey analytics, really understanding it, but also where along the journey, it's going to be most impactful where you're going to be able to reach customers the best through personalization. The most effective personalization is going to deliver on what people need at the time that they need it the most. So that's why this is so important is a couple of tools here just to call out content management. Modern content management, like Adobe Experience Manager is going to allow you to manage personalized content across all channels, not just the web. So headless capabilities are going to power and delivery of content to channels that include digital assistants, bots, voice devices, really all these other touch points that people hit digitally throughout their days. Digital Asset Management, defined in dynamic tagging that's aligned to user personas, is going to allow personalization across sentiment, composition, performance, emotion. And then finally, marketing automation. So personalization across email is a standard practice expanding that personalization to our mobile apps, order status, voices are our new opportunities to support along the customer journey. One example I want to pull out here from a client that we worked with. Early on in the pandemic, there was this big shift towards digital transformation in financial services. So brands were trying to understand how some of their less digital savvy customers are going to respond. So we worked with one of our clients to segment customers based on tech savviness, with a survey. So it was kind of a cute little marketing survey, where we would see how people were responding how digital, they were, before the pandemic of digital, they are now sort of their attitudes around that, take that information, append it to a marketing automation system to be able to then serve them content, to educate the people who were a little bit earlier on in their journey. So you don't want to be sending the same content to people who are incredibly familiar with how the mobile banking tools, they've been using them for years. You want to have something that can educate the people who are a little bit newer, while at the same time, providing more sort of advanced content for people who are a little bit more on the technical savvy scale. So example I gave before was more focused on sort of the traditional demographics with ages, you can also segment based on some more of the attitudes or even like that broader context that I was talking about. So the pandemic was really causing the shifts in behavior, taking all of those signals in and then applying them to your tools like content management, asset management, marketing automation, to create that purely, that really personalized experience there. I'd love to hear Chris, if you have any, any thoughts expense? A lot of these are Adobe tools, specifically?

Christopher Young  22:38

Oh, no, I don't have anything. Yeah, I mean, how much time to have, I think a couple things to think about, right, is that a lot of the companies and financial services that we work with do have, you know, modern CMS like ours, and they're getting value from it, I think the bigger challenge that we're seeing is how do they replicate that broadly? throughout the enterprise? You know, so we might be doing really well here. On the, let's say, the credit card division, that maybe not so well, on the institutional side. So how can they replicate like the, you know, this type of excellence across business units, digital domains, and even regions globally? And a big aspect of it when you think about some of these underlying parts of it around digital asset management in particular, is content searchability. So, you know, content is a parallel challenge to data, right? We've got data everywhere, you have content everywhere, right? So how easy is it for you to search and find what you're looking for? Another aspect is content intelligence as an example, meaning the people that create content, understand the performance of what they've created. So I mean, that's super important. You have all these people that are designing and creating experiences, but a step removed from how people are interacting with it, and how well it's performing. That shouldn't be underestimated. And then lastly, it's just simply the reusability of it. And one thing I will applaud because it's financial services, is a huge aspect of success in speeding up the production of content to meet the needs of personalization is partnership and education with legal and compliance departments, the people that ultimately could provide bottlenecks, not always, but if you bring them along this process and understand what you're doing, why you're doing it, because if you say, oh, yeah, we're just going to create little fragments of content, and then dynamically assemble them cool with that, you know, they probably panic, right? So if you explain to them this, how it works, these are the durations of it is the benefits of it. This the types of things that you'll be reviewing. We've seen a lot of success in terms of of that x accelerating that content lifecycle.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  24:48

So those stakeholders should be in the room in the beginning, really have that dialogue and lay off the roadmap.

Christopher Young  24:55

There's no such thing as under communicating with those folks.

Sarah Ohle  25:02

Yeah, I think that's a very, very important point and a great segue to the next pillar to, which is privacy and trust, because that's a big part of why those people need to be in the room from the beginning. And I think privacy and trust is it's a topic that's very front and center for every company across every vertical, but especially financial services, because you're talking about people's money, which is a very personal topic. And when it comes to personalization, I like to say, there's a fine line between personalized and creepy. And you need to be very conscious of that line and financial services, I think, with GDPR CCPA other state regulations, and browsers, eliminating default support for third party cookies. Every brand is now a data company. And being conscious about how you use and protect that data is, is needs to be the front of mind every time you're dealing with something like personalization here. So pausing for a moment, the counterpoint to everything I just said is, but do people really care about privacy? So people use social media, digital systems to our homes, you know, we're constantly surrounded by things taking in our personal information. So I think that that does come up, especially for the younger generations Do people really cared? I think a lot of brands and advertisers are going to assume that they don't. So this is a quick screenshot here from the President, a president of an advertising agency from just a few weeks ago. So this individual is pushing back on Apple's continued privacy push and how it impacts their business, not the consumer. They ask the question, Does anyone actually feel protected by this change? So let's answer that question. I think if you look at this, Forrester conducted a survey on what percentage of US adults are going to use at least one privacy tool when they're online? This could be an ad blocker, a VPN or anything similar that will help protect privacy.

Christopher Young  27:02

I was gonna say, I think people are guessing what this percentage could be if you want to put in the chat. What

Sarah Ohle  27:07

I love Yeah, yeah. Yeah, that's fun.

Christopher Young  27:10

Let's do it. Don't reveal yet. So if you have a guess of what this would be, I saw one in 11%.

Sarah Ohle  27:16

I was about to say, when I give this in person, I would pull the room and ask to get the number. And the results are all over the place. I'm very curious to see.

Christopher Young  27:26

Any other guesses? 60% or higher now 2%?

Sarah Ohle  27:35

Let me know we're ready to go for the big reveal already. So x actual number is 77% of this research was done before Apple released their security updates. This means 77% of US adults actively installed or configure these settings. Changes from organizations like Apple and Mozilla are simply defaulting to the settings that users would choose if they were asked. So yes, people do care about privacy. And at the end of the day, when it comes to sharing personal data, the customer is in control. This is another question when asked what would motivate you to share personal information, the top response was nothing. People don't want to necessarily share information, that's 36% of people said that. But if you do go a level deeper, I guess the second level cache, people will do a lot of things for a cash reward. But below that you have things like loyalty programs, options to opt out the better customer service, all that standing out as factors influencing willingness to share. So I think the main point for me on this slide is that well, two main points. One is that the customer does want to control their personal information. But the second one is that it's not that people aren't willing to share, but they need something valuable in return for sharing that information, because it is valuable to them. It's valuable to you, but it's probably more valuable to them. So what can you give them that they think is worthy of that

Don Keninitz  29:06

exchange? Well,

Christopher Young  29:08

one thing to add there, as you can see on this slide is just just anecdotally, something interesting is that financial services, and everyone complains that's been in the industry of regulations and its restrictions. But because it's a regulated industry, it has a trust advantage. So I just ran into a survey that was done by one of our technology partners, Genesis that says, you know, what industries are the most trusted with data and the top response at 48% was financial services. Health care providers were second, then what companies were the least trusted with data at 47%, which was social media companies. So there is definitely a consumer trust advantage that the industry has that to your point. It's our should be retained right with that really transparent in terms of what data that we need and what's the value exchange for

Sarah Ohle  29:57

Yeah, absolutely. And the good news is that there are areas you can focus on as a brand, a financial service brand to embrace privacy standards standard for your customers. So going through a couple of these enterprise preference management, so you create an enterprise preference management is going to allow your customers to define and manage their preferences for how you can use their data to personalize their experience, by being transparent and how you utilize customer data. This gives them a say in how their profiles are managed, which back to that control slide is putting that control back in their hands. The second piece is identity resolution. So modern approaches can be used to identify a person or a persona, without dependency on third party cookies. So knowing your customer earlier in their journey is going to allow you to accelerate the optimization of their journey and your ROI. The last isn't necessarily a tool, but something to be very, very, very aware of, if I'm sure everybody is already, but GDPR CCPA emerging laws, that's all putting control of customer customers data back into their hands. So brands need to invest in tools to help manage this compliance to have a deep understanding of this implant compliance and ensure that they can adapt as the legal definition of PII is always expanding. So personal, personal identifiable information is always evolving in terms of what people are considering enough to identify a specific person. So making sure you're very well versed and understanding what those are as they change. And then the last thing to call out here, which I actually find the most interesting of all of this, because it's probably the most basic yet the most intuitive is zero party data. So this is the Just ASK approach to personalization, in terms of giving control back to the customers that's doing that very directly. It's just it's becoming more common for brands just ask the customer about themselves or their goals, and align the underlying journey to those answers. So ask the people how they want their content personalized, and you're not inferring anything, you're very explicitly taking information they're giving you and making the journey personalized based on that. So adding that it's actually the example I shared earlier with the financial institution, we asked them about their tech savviness, we're able to take that information, apply it to their profile, and then personalize based on that. I really liked that last one,

Christopher Young  32:30

you know, because I work with a lot of our customers that are poring over data, analyzing it, you know, using AI, what is this person interested in? What are the behaviors that what are these indicating, when you just simply ask, like you're trying to do and how much easier that would be?

Sarah Ohle  32:47

Well, if you think even just from a personal perspective that I like when things are tailored to me, and I would rather just tell you what I want, then Have you guessed that it because you know, you're not always gonna get it right, based on my web activity, or even my personal like behavior online. Like, if you ask me what types of products I want to see, I will have an opinion and then it'll be more tailored, it'll be more likely to engage me,

Christopher Young  33:16

you just reminded me of an example. You know, I was before I joined Adobe, I was at E Trade. And we are, you know, in the brokerage space, there's something called account transfer and a cat where someone can just basically lift their entire portfolio on positions and bring it to another company. So you know, I tried to put together a campaign that was trying to avoid these Account Transfers where you lose a comp customer and how many assets they had. Long story short is we assembled information like okay, they've called the call center multiple times a week, they visit an account transfer page clear indicator, right that they're going to leave. We loaded that information for outbound calls to be paid because these were good customers bars. And when our rep started making the calls, they're like, No, I wasn't trying to leave. Like no, I wasn't I had no intention of transferring leaving. So it's just a clear example of as much analysis that you can do. Like there's nothing that supersedes is simply understanding and asking the person. Yeah, absolutely. So the final pillar,

Sarah Ohle  34:17

industry specific needs. When you're thinking about this, this obviously means understanding your own industry. And we're going to get into that in a minute. But I also want to talk for a second about understanding the trends that are happening in other industries, because at the end of the day, your customer is not just dealing with financial financial institutions, they're also customer of technology of retail of healthcare. So when you're thinking about industry specific needs, you need to not only look at your customer, what matters to them, you'll also need to consider how they behave in the context of your your category. So I think that's a lot of the moments based marketing stuff. We're talking about the end to end journey but also The experiences they're having with your competition. So most people have more than one financial brand in their lives. So not only what are the experiences they're having with you, what are the experiences they're having with your direct competitors, potentially people in other financial categories? So mortgage versus investments versus retail banking, and then even even fintech? So I think we did some research on that generational research I was talking about before, we found 77% of boomers have a FinTech account, which was a little bit surprising. Most of that was PayPal. So, you know, but But what are those experience that they're having with with a brand like PayPal, and how did that impact their expectations for how they're working with you. So then the broader out of industry trends are also going to impact this. So this is how they're setting their their expectations. Interacting not just with financial service brands, not just with FinTech brands, but also with brands like Uber with Amazon, all those that do personalization, hyper targeted, targeting, well, those are all setting their expectations with how they're going to interact with you. So last piece, we have just getting into some of the the specific challenges and ideas and thought starters in financial services. So when you're talking about driving change in financial services, you really want to think about the value to your customer, not just your product offering. So this idea of focusing on customer value, client retention, is going to be driven by focusing on long term, not just the immediate, it's a very long term lifelong. In a lot of cases, relationship of capitals, moves easily and optimizing the experiences to drive customer value is a key element in an effective customer program. And the second component here is enterprise wide thinking. So personalization is going to mean a lot of things to different groups, organizations can succeed by creating teams that comprise the key stakeholders from across the organization to define an optimal strategy. So think about the value to your customer, not just your product offering and how that looks and just reaches throughout the entire company. And one last note on that. And then I would love Chris to hear some of some of your thoughts with the clients that you've worked with. But change is hard in any organization. In financial services, there's a lot of additional concerns around privacy and risk that we were talking about that do often blow the adoption of new approaches. So I do want to end on this note, because I think it's one that's very specific challenge to financial services when it comes to things like personalization. This is just a framework up here. And there's a lot of words on the slide. But it's really broken down into three phases to get alignment for program and how to get started. I think one of the things we see is this hesitation and being nervous to get started because the end goal feels so lofty. So it is taken in stages, taking the steps, it's having that Northstar vision that three to five year vision. But not immediately thinking you're going to jump from here to there starting with a small step on personalization, continued test, learn, iterate, and build upon that, and continuing to revisit your your Northstar vision as well for for that plan. But here just laying it out the first phase, aligning on the strategic vision and framework. So really setting that up what it looks like second phase agreeing on metrics and validating that you have the right environment to measure success. And then the phase three is starting small but in depth with implementation, while at the same time developing internal talent. So starting small with a broader vision and continuing to build and iterate on there. So Chris, I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Some of the specific challenges or successes or tactics that you've seen. Yeah.

Christopher Young  39:11

Yeah. So I mean, of course, I agree with all of this. I just think that financial services in particular, has some organizational challenges. They're large, complex matrix organizations that are set up in divisions, right divisions that share the same customers in some cases. And these divisions, frankly, are not necessarily incented to work with one another. So when we talk about you know, these end to end journeys and customer centricity and date, it requires a ton of collaboration. So you know, we just completed our Digital Trends Survey, I think was about 488 Financial Services marketers. The top response in terms of success right top response from Financial Services. Can executives at 48% is their ability to be agile will determine our success as a marketing organization. So a lot of it has is, you know, you like to say, you know, it's technology, that's a challenge, but it's also the enterprise agility and the organizational structure that supports it. So we also looked at leaders, you know, like, We're the people that are self reported, but scored much higher in terms of innovation, and, you know, digital success, and customer centricity and inclusion, all of these different traits. And where we saw the biggest differences between those leaders, and the rest, were in order. Number one was training and learning programs. So investing in upskilling, your employees to better understand these concepts and use the digital tools that you've been talking about from CDP's to CMS is and whatever alphabet soup acronym, investing in work and project management, right? So the workflows that work behind the content creation, and the campaigns and all of that, which is going to be required, right? When you work with different functions and departments all the way through to compliance. And then, you know, automating and optimizing back office processes. So how, again, how can we get the organization to work together more effectively? And then how can we start expediting and improving collaboration, and automating a lot of manual tasks associated with us? So I just wanted to point that out, at least, and you know, that, you know, we're seeing, you know, varying degrees of success. And one of the areas that I think is really important, right is some structure internally, let's call them a center of excellence, that really has a true understanding of these areas, right? Mastery, or expertise in things like digital asset management, content creation, SEO associated with digital properties, or measurement, analytics, profile, assembly, segmentation. And these teams, right, allow scale, right into different departments, that should own elements of personalization, because it can't be done by the small team, the small team has to operate as an enabler. And so I see that as consistently as a way of getting more out of more departments in the enterprise.

Sarah Ohle  42:20

I think that's great. It's the idea of internal buy in, and education can't can't be understated, because I think it is, you know, if you don't have that, it's going to be impossible to implement anything that's going to be super effective. So the more you can start there, you know, you're going to be set up for success.

Christopher Young  42:38

Collaboration with it alignment with the technology. Super important. Absolutely.

Sarah Ohle  42:45

So that is what we have for content. I think we just at this point, open it up for for some q&a.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  42:53

Yeah. Awesome. If anybody has any questions, comments, you can toss them in the chat. I did have a few questions that came through here. One is what is the biggest blocker that brands run into when they're trying to start a personalization program?

Sarah Ohle  43:13

I mean, I think I mentioned it a little bit earlier. But I think, trying to jump right to like stage four, crawl, walk, run, fly, you know, jumping right to the fly, I think you hear about a lot that companies are doing in the space, and you get very excited about wanting to jump to those differentiating issues that can be very intimidating, it can be obviously technically challenging. And it can be hard to get that organizational buy in. So I think whatever industry, you're talking about really looking at again, keeping that longer term vision in mind, but starting and what you can do now, like there's a lot you can do, per personalization, that's just audience segmentation at a very basic level and start start there. Use your content management to personalize a content journey for a different audience, rather than going directly to AI or one to one or any of that sort of more sort of digitally advanced

Christopher Young  44:18

techniques. Say, do you have the right skill sets internally to do it? Do you have the right technology to activate it? Do you have the right use cases? So do you understand like, Oh, I'm gonna we're gonna personalize and automate these. Alright, so what are the scenarios that you're trying to impact your personalization? And then the fourth? I think, sir, you mentioned this is does this program tied to business outcomes? Because that, you know, if you drive business value, it opens so many doors in terms of investment, and look, you could be in industries within financial services that don't have that conversion activity that ties to revenue, like I don't open accounts. I'm an asset management firm. I'm more b2b or instant I think that you have to work internally to determine what those meaningful metrics are, like digital interactions and engagement. What does that lead to? You know, for us on the Adobe side. It's, you know, engagement of accounts, right? That lead to incremental sales. Nobody buys anything off our website, but we have some degree of attribution and say, engagement with our marketing on our website is good. So those are the sorts of activities.

Sarah Ohle  45:27

Yeah, I think that sparked something thought me too. I think the idea of we've see people sometimes get hung up on tactics, or even or tools. So the idea of focusing on a strategy first, and then filling that in with the tactics and tools that you need to achieve that strategy. So it's having the bigger picture rather than a minute tactics. So sometimes, you know, you'll somebody will come and say, we heard about this thing, we really want to do this. It's like, well, why are you doing that? And trying to understand sort of the underlying strategy, not just the tactic that may may be a buzzword in the world right now? No, that's great feedback.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  46:09

Another hot topic is the privacy, third party cookies, and get these questions a lot about this. What are some of the pitfalls you see brands getting into today? In terms of privacy, privacy, that third party cookies and cookie lists world, what does that look like?

Sarah Ohle  46:30

I think pitfall is thinking that it's going to go away. Maybe that's the right way to put it is not recognizing this as a permanent shift. I think I've been in digital marketing for a long time. And when I first started, it was very much the wild west where we got to experiment a lot and do a lot of stuff. But there wasn't a lot of regulation around it. And that wasn't right. And I think the regulation is catching up now. And things like cookieless is going to become the standard. And if anything, just keep growing and getting more regulatory, the regulatory restrictions around what you're able to do. So from a brand's perspective, again, just being very knowledgeable about it, understanding it, having the right people in place to keep looking at how things are changing the laws, and and preparing for the future. With that. I would say

Christopher Young  47:33

there's not a lot of risk taking in financial services to be one, you know, I don't I think the issue is kind of, if there's such a thing as being way too conservative, that could be it right. So you are not taking full advantage of capabilities, or personalization tactics that don't expose any kind of personal identifiable information, as an example, it's you're being too conservative in terms of things that you do, where there are things that you can definitely drive experience improvement, you know, without, you know, using all sorts of data, you know, a lot of the times that data isn't required, you know, to be highly effective, and personalization, someone's name, and you know, unless it's outside of an email, you know, the specifics of their account balance, a lot of this can be obfuscated, you know, pulled into segments and still have, you know, distinct personalization for each of those segments.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  48:29

Awesome. The interesting question here from the audience. So with highly dynamic content, personalization, fit and financial services, how are you managing compliance requirements to keep a copy of the content presentation and associated with the segment the viewer was in at the time they saw the offer?

Christopher Young  48:49

I mean, how much time do we have in this q&a? I asked about what industry, I guess Raphael is in is just I'm guessing it's like a broker dealer or something that's like FINRA regulated. But there's, this is something that I'm very, I've been talking a lot internally about this, frankly. So I'm looking at this. I'm like, Oh, my God, this is exactly what I've been talking about. You know, right. Now, there's a lot of workarounds to this, because I do think that highly dynamic personalized content in permutations of 1000s is going to be a nightmare, right in terms of the archiving requirements and storage and there's different ways like, you know, our customers are using our some of our applications at the campaign level, to store all of the associated content for that campaign, and then the associated lists for it. There are others that are using some of our we have the Document Cloud as well. So they're taking HTML and converting them to PDFs and then storing them. And then also, you know, we we have the ability to understand what someone saw. I think the missing piece for us is because they want See it? Right? Look, we have all of you know, we have offer IDs, we have, you know, IDs associated with everyone that they get served something from our systems, so we can match them. But a lot of the times the regulator's or auditors are saying, Okay, show me specifically what that person saw. That's something, that there's a lot of manual processes around it. It's something that I'm definitely looking into interesting ways around it, but doesn't it's not as elegant as I'd like to be. Right yet. Yet. Yep. Um,

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  50:30

so another one great question. How do you create a low cost proof of concept to prove that this will be successful to get by an investment?

Sarah Ohle  50:43

I think yeah, no, I'll say from from my point of view, from the strategy point of view, it's a lot, we do a lot of work on my team, almost doing in creating the working with one internal evangelist, who wants to use us to make the case. So somebody at the company will come to us and very, very, you know, maybe did it their past company, and is really big on things like personalization. And what we'll do is pull together an ROI model, or just a case, a case for change. And explain sort of this is how we've seen it in other companies. This is what we know from driving on the industry about the type of ROI and how it can look at your organization. So from the strategy perspective, a lot of what we're doing is helping people within a company make that case to the the broader organization. So I think it's it's not necessarily about a small proof of concept, although you can, like I said, start small, and keep learning iterating and growing based on that. But a lot of the times, it's just explaining based on what we've seen, in other cases in the broader industry, the the ROI impact it could have. And

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  51:59

what are the steps institutions can take to balance privacy with personalization?

Sarah Ohle  52:07

I mean, I think we've talked about this quite a bit. But I think, you know, Chris made a great point that you're not always personalizing on things that are crossing the line of privacy, like even somebody's name isn't necessarily something you need to personalize, and you're certainly not needing to personalize on the balance in their checking account. I think a lot of the times, there's a lot of value you can bring to somebody just based on where they are in their life stage or you know, just keep pulling up that other that example I use, like, where people are on their digital journey or tech savviness. Like that's something that isn't really crossing the line of privacy at all. It's not even PII, it's just, you know, how comfortable are you with digital tools? So I think there's a lot of things you can do to add value that aren't crossing that, you know, fine line between privacy and creepy that I mentioned earlier.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  52:56

Yeah, there's a fine line. Yes. Yeah. Well, awesome. Thanks so much hero, digital and Adobe. So it was great information. Greatly appreciate your time. And all the information provided today, Christopher and Sarah, we encourage follow up conversation with the Hero Digital team. And I'd love to have a conversation with you guys, as well. So feel free to send me an email at And before we go, we have some fun takeaways here from the hero digital team, and then we'll wrap it up. Yeah, just

Sarah Ohle  53:31

a couple things before we go. So if you're interested in learning more about ways here, programs started quickly, or give your existing efforts to jumpstart so reach out to us Hero and Adobe have to find bundled packages to quickly IT companies moving in with both Adobe target and Adobe analytics. Be happy to share those details. Second thing we touched on cookieless. A little bit today, we did recently launched a cookieless future impact report that focuses on what brands need to do to meet customers where they're at in terms of privacy. So you can download that. From The URL is right there. And then last, but certainly not least, Adobe Summit is right around the corner. So like last year, it's virtual and it's free. So encourage each of you and your teams to register if you want to learn more about things like what we were talking about today. Adobe's done a great job of categorizing all the content from beginner to advanced across each product offerings so you can quickly build out an agenda that works for you. So all of that information is on the slide. And

Christopher Young  54:35

thank everybody for your time today.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  54:38

Fantastic information. And again, we will connect everybody to the Hero Digital team. With that we're going to wrap it up, have a great week. Take care, stay safe, and we will see you on our next event. Bye everyone.

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