Previously, Bank of China (Hong Kong) (BOCHK) revamped its mobile banking app to improve customer experience, especially amid the pandemic. INTERACTIVE-MARKETING recently spoke to Dick Ho (pictured below), Deputy Managing Director, Personal Digital Banking Department at BOCHK, about the redesigned app and digital transformation in banking.
1. What are the main drivers of the overhaul of the mobile banking application by BOCHK?
Our customers are always our priority and we believe that a truly customer-centric mobile banking experience can help and inspire them to make the best wealth management decisions. For BOCHK’s mobile banking app redesign, we invited customers to participate in prototype testing for the first time as part of the five-step design thinking process of empathizing, defining, design, prototype and test, in order to create a solution that could help them tackle. their weak points and correspond to their needs.
2. The pandemic has caused people to rely more on mobile banking services. What are customers expecting now and how is BOCHK meeting their needs?
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated our digitization journey and we are seeing exponential growth in our digital transaction volume. To meet this growth, our new mobile banking app will offer our clients up to 100 banking services, in addition to a more personalized and convenient wealth management experience.
Today, our clients are more hungry for information and market insight that can offer them inspiration and advice before making investment decisions. We have also found that many of them are now turning to video content for information. Live broadcasts, in particular, have become increasingly popular, as they offer real-time information and interactions that aid investment decision-making.
Based on these results, we launched the first BoC Live platform in our new mobile banking app to provide a variety of insightful live programs to help our customers stay on top of the market. This new channel allows us to share market news and market expert knowledge in a timely and efficient manner. In addition, it allows us to interact with our customers, giving us the opportunity to listen to their thoughts.
This runs alongside our easy-to-use live chat service, which saw its usage more than double in January 2021 compared to the corresponding month in 2020, showing our customers’ growing confidence in our digital services. Backed by Virtual Assistant Bonnie and our customer service representatives, this 24 hour online chat service provides instant assistance without having to visit our branches.
3. What are the upcoming trends of digital transformation in the banking industry in the near future? And how does the transformation benefit customers, the bank and even the industry?
In the past, most traditional mobile banking apps were defined as transaction-based tools, as they simply replaced some of the roles performed by bank branches and hotlines. However, in this new era, the connection between banks and customers should no longer be limited to financial products. In fact, it must be integrated into our daily life at all times.
In addition, we now know that our customers no longer make decisions on impulse. They research, review and then buy. That’s why we provide inspiration and information to aid decision making through our mobile banking app. Our collaborations with various strategic partners like etnet, AAstocks and Ctrip in the application of Open API have also been designed to meet their needs in various financial and lifestyle scenarios.
4. What are BOCHK’s marketing strategies in Hong Kong in response to upcoming trends and changing customer needs?
Banks often invite celebrities as spokespersons to influence their customers. However, when it comes to financial products, today’s consumers no longer only want product information, but also insightful, professional and authentic content that enables them to make the best decisions. Therefore, every piece of content that we deliver through BoC Live will be valuable and conveyed through story angles that really engage and connect them with them.
Additionally, with the rapid rise of digital technology and the new normal in consumer behavior caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many millennials prefer self-service and online services as their first step. Before contacting our staff, they prefer to tap into knowledge bases to resolve their issues.
This is where digital transformation will become a key part of customer focus, as we leverage technology to empower and inspire our customers across different digital channels. As more of them will only want to see the right message at the right time, we will be able to deliver more personalized marketing messages based on their profiles and interests – even incorporating our suggestions into their daily lives. through machine learning and AI.
5. Looking ahead, can you describe the strategies to strengthen BOCHK’s position in Hong Kong and the region?
As one of the leading banks in Hong Kong, we are involved in many aspects of people’s lives such as everyday consumption, investing, buying a home, and planning for retirement. That is why we want to make our mobile banking services a solution to simplify people’s daily lives. For example, buying an apartment can be a complicated process, but our Home Expert app will guide our clients every step of the way – from property planning and appraisal to mortgage application. Through it all, their trust will be essential to lead us to develop more applications that will empower them.
Banking as a platform is also a key strategy we are focusing on, as our Application Programming Interface (API) opens up a whole new world of opportunities for partnerships. We hope to continue exploring transparent banking services not only through our apps, but also for different life scenarios.