Sitting on a Goldmine of Data

  • Mary Wisniewski
  • June 7, 2012
  • 0

In marketing, retailers buying keywords on Google was so yesterday.

The most salient point coming from a webinar held in late May by loyalty rewards vendor Truaxis focused on how retailers are primed to pay cold, hard cash to financial institutions to better market their products and services. Why? FIs are sitting on a goldmine of customer data. Banks know what consumers are buying. Yet, banks largely haven’t taken advantage of the opportunity to date.

“Data is a huge, untapped asset that most financial institutions are sitting on,” said Schwark Satyavolu, chief executive of Truaxis, during the webinar. “That data is the biggest asset.”

Though merchant-funded rewards are a great way to step into the market, Satyavolu believes FIs’ data has much broader implications than just that functionality.

“Merchant-funded rewards are great, but there are more opportunities,” Satyavolu said.

Those opportunities, broadly labeled as personal services, will better blossom as the mobile channel continues to mature and provides even  more customer data to banks. In turn, a large institution can “give a small banker type of experience [to customers] by creating very personal experiences for them,” said Satyavolu.

By offering “personal services,” the bank card becomes much more than a way to pay for something, he argued.

To support his message, a Forrester analyst also joined the call to talk up the business possibilities within bank’s data.

“Banks need to realize that all the information [they] are sitting on is valuable outside of their our own organization,” said Brad Strothkamp, an analyst that specializes in eCommerce/eBusiness strategy for financial services.

Strothkamp pointed to how retailers pay millions of dollars to buy keywords on Google and Yahoo and ads on Facebook; yet, banks sit on the very data that could be “ten times more valuable” to retailers. Banks’ data is “so much more granular” as it relates to what customers are buying and includes insights on other consumer behavior, such as when they are changing addresses, he said.

“Monetizing the bank’s data is in its infancy,” said Strothkamp. “It’s broader than merchant-funded rewards….Merchant-funded rewards might be the toe into the door of technology.”

  Like This Post

Mary joined the Bank Innovation team in 2011 and serves as its editor, blogger and content curator. She covers the commerce, fintech and small business beats. She also oversees RMG’s custom publications, manages the freelancing team and contributes stories for the media company’s print publications. Prior to working at RMG, Mary was the fashion editor at National Jeweler magazine, where she contributed, among other things, coverage of international jewelry shows, Fashion Week, rising gold prices, bloody Burmese gemstones and a Bill Clinton watch junket. Her written work has also appeared in Cracked, Billboard and a number of fashion blogs and business publications. Mary has a BA in Journalism from Pepperdine University in Malibu. She grew up on a dirt road in the suburbs of Detroit and currently lives in New York with two roommates, a record player, an espresso machine and a toy poodle. Mary is endlessly curious and follows anything that grabs her. Current interests include literature, anthropology, travel, essays and fashion. She is fond of good conversation, oceans, startups, dandyism, coffee, cemeteries, Cat Stevens, Gregor von Rezzori, Oscar Wilde and Gidget.

Leave a Reply