LONDON—Significant numbers of major European banks are adopting techniques used     by successful retailers to increase revenues and cross-sell products,      according to a survey of 78 senior marketing executives at leading     European banks.

The survey commissioned by Accenture and UniCredit and conducted by     Efma, revealed substantive progress among banks in implementing proven     retail strategies. Overall, 41 percent of respondents said that they had     implemented or will implement within one year at least one program     similar to retailers’ initiatives. And, a significant number of     respondents said their banks had “already begun” initiatives similar to     those of:

  • Best Buy (56 percent);
  • Giorgio Armani (47 percent);
  • Prenatal (38 percent).

Best Buy had implemented a customer segmentation initiative which     identified current and future customer profitability and that segmented     customers for appropriate marketing and offers. Giorgio Armani’s     initiative includes in-store and online branding programs targeting     Y-generation customers with popular icons, social networking and     entertainment. The Italian-based maternity retailer, Prenatal, provides     free in-store and online customer education services.

Respondents to the survey were asked to evaluate 16 successful customer     initiatives by companies outside the banking industry for their     applicability and potential to increase bank revenues and cross-selling.      The top-rated initiatives were:

  •’s point-of-sale product recommendations, which present       packages frequently “bought together” based on storewide buying       patterns and other correlations;
  • Best Buy’s customer segmentation strategy;
  • Apple’s iTunes “Genius” tool, which recommends new content based on       individual users’ purchasing histories and entertainment libraries,      enabled by analytics capability.

“We expect a shakeout in the banking industry, driven by advanced     marketing and analytics capabilities,” said Piercarlo Gera, managing     director of Accenture Banking Distribution and Marketing Services. “New     service models, with increased focus on digital channels, including     social media, are already under development or being implemented to     engage with today’s less loyal customers. Those banks that learn quickly     and selectively from the successes of top retailers – particularly in     areas such as customer analytics and behavioral segmentation,      self-service and customer-centricity – have a clear opportunity to     outperform their competitors.”

According to the survey, four out of five respondents (78 percent)      believe the customer analytics and behavioral segmentation techniques     employed successfully by retailers will be vital to the banks’ future     competitiveness.

Respondents also gave high ratings to Prenatal, and BMW received high     marks for its “build your BMW” online product self-configuration tool.

“Despite the differences between banks and retailers – in terms of their     products and frequency of customer interaction – banks can gain     selective inspiration from traditional retail practices,” said     Alessandro Maria Decio, Head of UniCredit’s Family and SME Division.      “Marketing, customer segmentation and the ability to continuously     monitor customer needs are key areas where many leading retailers have     distinguished themselves. Leveraging these successes for their own     business can help banks differentiate their products and services for     consumers.”

Many of the retail strategies considered to have the highest intrinsic     potential for banks are also considered among the hardest to implement,      according to the survey. The Apple and NH Hotel customer initiatives—    rated among the top five for their potential benefits and applicability     to banks—were also rated among the top five for having the highest     investment and organizational impact.

“The world’s top retailers are laser-focused on getting into the minds     of their customers and translating their insights into ways to     efficiently deliver what their customers want – and how they want it,”      said Patrick Desmares, secretary general of Efma. “It took retailers     many years to build these best practices. Not all of them will make     sense for European banks but, with an informed selection process and     appropriate investment, many of these innovations can help banks win the     race to rebuild customer loyalty, growth and profitability.”

Accenture     Banking Distribution and Marketing Services, a business service     within Accenture’s Financial Services operating group, serves more than     100 banks worldwide.


Accenture and UniCredit commissioned the Efma to interview 78 senior     marketing and retail executives at 60 leading banks across Europe,      including Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia,      Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy,      Kazakhstan, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian     Federation, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey,      Ukraine and the United Kingdom. Respondents represented almost all of     the top European institutions. Interviews were conducted in writing     between January and March 2011. Respondents were provided details of 16     innovative customer initiatives from outside of the banking industry;      innovations were pre-selected from a total of 70 customer innovations.

About Accenture

Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and     outsourcing company, with more than 223,000 people serving clients in     more than 120 countries. Combining unparalleled experience,      comprehensive capabilities across all industries and business functions,      and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies,      Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance     businesses and governments. The company generated net revenues of     US$21.6 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2010. Its home page     is

About UniCredit

UniCredit is a major international financial institution with strong     roots in 22 European countries and an overall international network     present in approximately 50 markets, over 9,600 branches and 162,000     employees as of 31 December 2010. In the CEE region, UniCredit operates     the largest international banking network with nearly 3,900 branches.      The Group operates in the following countries: Austria, Azerbaijan,      Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia,      Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan,      Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine.

About Efma

Efma is a not-for-profit association specializing in retail financial     marketing, formed in 1971 by bankers and insurers. Today, over 3,000     brands in 130 countries are Efma members and these include over 80     percent of Europe’s largest retail financial institutions. Efma provides     a professional forum that enables members to share experiences; promote     best practices; and collaborate through alliances and partnerships. This     is complemented by regular events, councils, online communities,      detailed studies, a journal and a website with extensive information and     news. For more information:



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