Posts Tagged ‘bank innovation’


Five Shifts that Define the New Era for Wealth Management

November 6, 2012

(This post was also published today on the blog of my consulting firm clientific,  follow me there too.)

Five massive foundational shifts are impacting financial service providers of all types, and they are impacting those that serve affluent clients in especially unique ways. Many of the strategies, skills and behaviors that enabled success in the past are now at best ineffective, and completely irrelevant in some cases. Advisors and firms serving affluent clients must adapt to these new realities to be successful in the future.

“If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance even less.” 

— General Eric Shinseki, Chief of Staff, U. S. Army

The first shift is economic. The global financial crisis begun in 2008 is still having a long-term impact on the creation, growth and preservation of wealth. Today’s low growth, low yield environment will likely stick with us for some time, and today’s advisors have to be able to help their clients navigate the realities of the new economy. Firms cannot count on rising portfolio values to increase revenues.

The second shift is regulatory. Partially as a result of the financial meltdown, central banks and regulators all over the world are the in middle of redefining the rules and regulations that today’s financial advisors will likely have to live by for the rest of their careers. Some of the important revenue streams of the past have been curtailed or eliminated—think overdraft fees, payday loans, interchange fees, some mortgage fees, etc. And we are not even close to done, as of October 1, 2012 only one-third of the provisions of Dodd-Frank had been finalized, and another third have not yet even been proposed.

The third shift is demographic. Various research projects that anywhere from $18 Trillion and $56 Trillion of financial wealth will be passing down from the Traditionalist and Baby Boomer generations to their Generation X and Generation Y children and grandchildren over the next several years. Gen X and Gen Y could have a combined wealth that exceeds that of the Baby Boomers as early as 2018, and they do not want “their father’s Oldsmobile”. Even with the more conservative estimates, this is a huge threat for those advisors and firms who don’t adapt to the changes. And it is a massive opportunity for those that do.

The fourth shift is competitive. The global financial crisis caused the weakest firms to disappear while the biggest and strongest got bigger and stronger. (In some cases, only bigger.) It is more important than ever for smaller firms to differentiate themselves in ways that are really relevant. Simply being “the bank” of, say Cozad, for example is no longer enough.

The fifth shift is technological. The tools are already here to radically improve client intimacy and client engagement. The rapid adoption of the iPad and other tablets give wealth managers the opportunity to change the dynamics of the across-the-desk transaction into the shoulder-to-shoulder collaboration that really engages the client. Big data and analytics give firms the power to better understand client behaviors and preferences, if they bother to listen. Social media opens up whole new avenues of client contact.

The challenge will be for firms to adopt the right strategies and then have the discipline to execute. As in every era, we will have winners and we will have losers, and success will go to those who embrace the possibilities of the future while staying relevant to their clients.

You might also like:

Wealth Management 3.0 is Here, Are You Ready?

The Convergence of High Tech and High Touch in Wealth Management

© 2012 JP Nicols. All rights reserved.


Best Ideas From Bank Innovation 2012- Part 1

April 2, 2012

Last week I attended the Bank Innovation 2012 Conference in San Francisco. I met a lot of great people and picked up some new ideas. Here’s what stuck out for me (in a good way):

What Is “Banking” Today?  A Debate on the Future

“We need to marry the online experience to the real world experience– especially for high value transactions, while lower value transactions need to get more efficient.”

Noah Breslow, Chief Operating Officer, On Deck Capital

“In essence, banking is a utility. Removing pain is a win. You need to give clients a reason to care…The key is to use data to predict what customers want, not dictate it.”

Shawn Budde, Co-Founder & Chief Risk Officer, ZestCash

“We’ve reached the tipping point on electronic banking, but people need a better reason to go with a direct bank.”

Dan O’Malley, Founder & CEO, PerkStreet Financial

“We should be trying to build brands that people want to be associated with. They should want to wear our logo because it says something about who they are.”

Jeff Stephens, Founder, Tribed and CBC

New Product Strategies & Possibilities

“We don’t have an ‘innovation department’. All 2500 associates are responsible for innovation.”

Todd Sandler, Head of Product Strategy & Deposits, ING Direct

“Consumers want a lot of help, and they still look to banks for it. They are moving past transactions and history, and they want help and advice for the future.”

James Shanahan, President, Shanahan & Associates, LLC

Social Banking Without Being Insecure or Annoying

“Companies don’t blog, people do…we replaced logos with faces for our twitter responders and we expanded our 6AM-6PM coverage to 24×7…We pay more attention to sentiment rather than number of followers.”

Darius Miranda, VP, Social Business Strategist, Wells Fargo

“We actually sat down and wrote 20,000 personalized emails…We got a 40% response rate”

Josh Reich, CEO, Simple Finance Technology Co. / BankSimple

“You have to think anywhere/anytime and you have to be authentic…You have to connect your brand to employees first. You have to work inside out.”

Eric Rinebold, Industry Principal — Digital Engagement, Infosys

Coming Up Tomorrow: 

Best Ideas From Bank Innovation 2012- Part 2


Preview: Bank Innovation Conference

March 28, 2012

Here’s where to find me the next couple of days while I’m at the Bank Innovation conference in San Francisco. I’ll report back next week with implications on the intersection of leadership, advice and technology.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Session 1:  What Is “Banking” Today?  A Debate on the Future

  • How can banks realize the dream of “holistic” banking considering legacy challenges
  • What do the most successful start-ups tell us about the future
  • Which conventional wisdoms about the future of banking are wrong
  • How does the branch and ATM fit into the concept of the Future Bank?


Noah Breslow, Chief Operating Officer, On Deck Capital

Shawn Budde, Co-Founder & Chief Risk Officer, ZestCash

Dan O’Malley, Founder & CEO, PerkStreet Financial

Jeff Stephens, Founder, Tribed and CBC

Session 2:  New Product Strategies & Possibilities

  • Where the consumers are, now
  • Innovations worth noting and ones worth ignoring
  • How CFPB and Dodd-Frank realities color product design
  • The future of PFM
  • How should “commerce” integrate with “banking”


Philip Jenkins, Chief Operating Officer, Strands Finance

Rafael Lopes, VP, Sr. Product Manager – International Products & Digital Channels, City National Bank

Iker Marcaide, Founder, Peer Transfer

Todd Sandler, Head of Product Strategy & Deposits, ING Direct

James Shanahan, President, Shanahan & Associates, LLC

Josh S. Turnbull, Managing Consultant, Advisory Services,  Center for Financial Services Innovation

Session 3:  Social Banking Without Being Insecure or Annoying

  • Elements of an effective Twitter strategy
  • The mobile piece explored
  • Is it possible to successfully leverage location apps?
  • How does banking become a part of the social media experience?


Kimarie Matthews, VP of Social, Wells Fargo

Josh Reich, CEO, Simple Finance Technology Co. / BankSimple

Eric Rinebold, Industry Principal — Digital Engagement, Infosys

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Session 4:  Channel Agnosticism: Being Everything to Every Customer

  • Getting more consumers to embrace innovation
  • Usage trends
  • Overcoming the challenge of balancing customer wants and legacy system realities
  • Can branches be maximized?
  • What are the operational challenges that need to be overcome in order to be truly channel agnostic?


Ginger Schmeltzer, SVP, Digital Channel Management, SunTrust Banks

Geoff Knapp, Vice President, Online Banking & Consumer Insight, Fiserv

Julie Milbrand, Vice President, Community Banking, Internet Services Group, Wells Fargo

Session 5:  Separating Digital Wallet & Mobile Payment Fact from Fiction

  • One wallet or multiple wallet platforms? What level of integration can we expect or is necessary?
  • What’s out there now? What’s on the way? Where does NFC fit in?
  • Loyalty, points, rewards and virtual currencies
  • The future of cashless payments


Bill Clark, President, Spindle

Mark Fischer, Chief Executive Officer, Inspire Commerce

Michael Garelik, Financial Services Innovation & Mobile and Alternative Payments Specialist

Omar Seyal, Co-Founder, Tagstand

Eric Remer, CEO, PaySimple

Session 6:  Shop-aholic: Integrating Banking Into a Better Shopping Experience

  • Rewards and banking
  • Payments platform implications for bankers and retailers
  • Where do ATMs fit in?
  • How the digital wallet fosters better retailing?


Marc Caltabiano, VP Marketing & Products, Cartera Commerce

Lewis Gersh, Managing Partner, Metamorphic Ventures

Samir Kothari, Co-Founder, Truaxis

Brian Rigney, VP & GM Business Solutions, CashStar

Session 7: The Organic Online/Offline Twitter Ideastorm

  • During this session, we’ll undertake a good, old-fashioned brainstorm, but using newfangled social media with ideas aired live and via Twitter converging into a dynamic blend of innovation and a glimpse of the future.

Session 8:  App Crazy: Postcards From the Edge of Digital Banking

  • Why certain apps work, and certain apps suck
  • App update by device
  • What’s the next new-new thing?
  • Smartphone vs. tablet vs. both


Eric Connors, SVP of Products, Yodlee

Joe Adams, Managing Principal, Hampton Pryor Consulting

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