people watching videoPete Hilger, President of Allied Solutions, which provides products and services to financial institutions, told Loyalty360 that his company will offer SmartVideo technology, powered by SundaySky, to all its credit union clients to support the member onboarding experience and generate unique and impactful customer engagement.

In the financial services marketplace, consumers have many options, making the need to invest in technology solutions even greater to differentiate from competitors and retain loyal customers. With personalized videos tailored to each individual, consumers are engaged in a way that traditional print and electronic communications simply cannot offer, increasing the likelihood of customer loyalty.

“We started looking at SmartVideo 2½ years ago as a better way to communicate to people,” Hilger told Loyalty360. “A business associate came to us and told us about it, saying it was ahead of its time and that we should look at it. We sought out SundaySky, who provides this technology. We wanted to take a risk management product of ours, collateral protection insurance (CPI), that has historically been viewed more as a necessary evil and transform the communication experience – making it more engaging and attractive to the end customer.”

SmartVideo helps customer-centric brands tell stories with personalized, real-time video experiences at every stage of the customer lifecycle. The SmartVideo lifecycle marketing platform generates hundreds of thousands of SmartVideos daily, powering customer acquisition, support, growth, and loyalty initiatives for leaders in ecommerce, telecommunications, insurance, banking, and travel.

PenFed, one of the largest credit unions in the country serving more 1.3 million members worldwide and over $18 billion in assets, and an Allied Solutions client, recently rolled out a SmartVideo program for onboarding members, and the early results have driven measurable business impact.

More than 90% of survey respondents said the videos help to understand account information and 79% of those who opened the email watched the videos in their entirety. For credit unions, member loyalty and satisfaction are two of the biggest objectives, and with SmartVideo, 85% of PenFed’s members who viewed the video and completed the survey said they would refer a friend or family member.

“SmartVideo helps the onboarding process for credit unions, and helps build relationships between customers and institutions,” Hilger said. “The video informs customers when payments are due, what the requirements are, and most importantly, thanks them. It encourages them. No longer do we have to send a series of notices. The click rate that provides this information exceeds 25%. Our plan is to get the 40 largest credit unions onboard and utilizing this by the end of 2015. It’s pretty exciting stuff. It’s something the industry never had the ability to do before.”

Hilger said before SmartVideo, financial institutions have relied on transactional relationships, but now it’s more about relationship building and educating the consumer.

“We use it for the onboarding process and for the entire relationship building aspect of it,” he said. “That behavior change is the first step. Adding more services is the second step. Today, this is how consumers do business and that personalized approach is how you make and retain relationships with them.”

Credit unions are losing market share because they focus on transactional relationships, and not personalized ones, Hilger added.

“The response rates (with SundaySky’s SmartVideo) are higher than any of us predicted,” Hilger said. “We have more than 100 clients waiting to sign up. Our hands are full. In the past 90 days, I’ve never seen momentum and energy behind a product or solution in the financial institution market like this.”

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