Why customer perception is important for business
It’s all about value, isn’t it? Or rather, it’s all about the perception of value.
After the Royal Commission, we thought the banking world would change. Mortgage brokers would stop selling on self-interest; they’d focus on the customer and keep their commissions clean. Banks and wealth funds would charge only customers still living; insurance would pay when you claim and Super would be smooth sailing to a senior sunset.
Yes, the business models are creakingly turning around and we’ve been watching the landscape transform, but what hasn’t changed is the customer perception.
Customer research still shows customers talking about “the banker mindset” and there’s still a general greyness when people discuss their Main Financial Institution.
The opportunity for no-frill neo banks seems, unfortunately, very wide open.
What’s needed is a mindset shift...
How to see through the customer lens and reframe perceptions
Imagine you’re on an aircraft, sitting in 11F, texting those last messages before the flight proceeds to taxi to take off. The safety demonstration strikes up… blah blah. But you’re not listening and respecting what they’re saying - you’re thinking about getting a drink and getting going,
Perceptions need reframing.
Once you see through customers’ lens you understand things from a whole new perspective...
Customers can view a safety demonstration as an impingement to their ‘me’ time, whereas airlines see it as an essential and legally required part of their service and safety.
An alternative approach for airlines to introduce the safety demonstration might be: “As a mark of respect to our highly-trained crew, please put away your phones.” Then there’s a silence. The crew looks for signs you complied. This simple change reframes the customer lens, shifts mindsets and perceptions.
The value customers see when perceptions are reframed
Now the demo begins - and you’re seeing a highly-trained professional. And you’re behaving like a respectful member of an audience.
And money and finances are even more complicated – it’s emotionally charged, and people’s expectations are higher.
How to get perception management right
Because of this, it’s imperative industries operating in this space get perception management right.
Customers are crying out for a sign that the banking industry is showing remorse for their past mistakes and taking real action to demonstrate that they are working towards changing their ways.
The banking industry needs to reframe perceptions before it can expect us to see value. While they attempt to become more relationship-based, we’ll see only the transaction. While they’re helping us achieve our goals, we’ll only see them helping themselves. Why? Because it’s all about perception.
Why customers need to be re-primed before increasing tech
Of course, being transparent, turning off grandfather commissions and articulating services more clearly will get you taxi-ing towards the runway. Offering and delivering an ethical service will see you lift off.
But there’s still a perception of an industry that had to be brought to book before it changed, an industry that tried to get away with some pretty serious things when no-one was looking. Increasing technological sophistication and slick Robo-advice will take the financial sector further in the wrong direction without a significant perception challenge to re-prime customers first.
It’s not about value. It’s about perceived value.
Want a new perspective that pays? we’d be glad to show a whole other altitude to fly at.
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