MeridianLink: Custom Integration Strategies for Digital Lending

As more and more consumers demand mortgagesand consumer loansOnline, it’s more important than ever for banks and credit unions to use targeted digital strategies for onboarding as well as meeting consumer demands for personalized service.

As consumers no longer apply for credit in person at bank branches, financial institutions must move away from a “lead generation mindset” and develop onboarding processes that target the needs of new customers, including incentive offers and streamlined processes.

It depends The future of digital lendingby Jim Marous, owner and publisher of Digital Banking Report. The 2021 report, released in September, is sponsored by MeridianLink.

Even when offering incentives, financial institutions need to do more to build better relationships with new customers. This includes making it easier to access related products and services, providing more personalized communication, encouraging them to engage with employees at their local branches and connecting with them across all possible channels, the report says. . Often, however, organizations don’t use the most efficient channel: text messaging – consumers open and read text messages faster than emails.

Growth of formal integration programs

57% of financial institutions currently have formal onboarding programs for new consumer loan clients, up from 45% in 2020, 39% in 2019 and 30% in 2018, according to research from the Digital Banking Report.

“It’s still lower than we would prefer, but the improvement over the past few years is definitely encouraging,” writes Marous. “What remains of concern is that 27% of organizations do not intend to launch an integration program for loan products in the near or distant future. It’s actually worse than what we saw in 2020 (25%) but an improvement over 2019 (30%) and 2018 (40%). ”

Many financial institutions are reluctant to implement new customer onboarding programs because they believe it will be expensive and complicated. While this may be true, there are third-party vendors with excellent integration capabilities that can simplify the process for organizations at a cost that will still deliver a strong ROI, the report says.

More varied customer communication is needed

Additionally, while research indicates that a successful onboarding program should include seven or more direct communications, 63% of financial institutions only connect with their customers once or twice after receiving their loans.

“The most important step for almost all communication with new customers begins with an email, direct mail, text or phone call that encourages the new customer or member to set up online and / or mobile bank accounts. as well as direct deposit / mobile deposit ”says the report.

The sooner they do this, the better, as customers can better manage their accounts with 24-hour access.

But even as consumers embrace such digital convenience, industry experts say financial institutions should still encourage customers to visit their local branches.


Use data and insights to create a personalized integration

To be successful, banks and credit unions must continue to provide new customers with the same personalized services that they used to acquire those customers. Unfortunately, most lenders use a single onboarding strategy, but should instead send each new customer a series of personalized messages through the most efficient channels, such as text messaging.

“At the end of the day, communication needs to be customer-centric rather than product-centric,” according to the Digital Banking report.

Organizations can tailor communications with customers around such things as information they’ve collected through the loan application process, demographics, and information about how customers use their products as they go. the relationship is growing, the report notes.

This year, 16% of financial institutions said they plan to build and run a loan integration program within the next 12 months – a commitment that has never been greater, according to the report. .

Organizations that do not intend to implement new or better onboarding processes in the near future should rethink this strategy, according to the report.

Download the report on the future of digital lending

As a sponsor of the publication, MeridianLink makes a limited number of copies of the Digital Banking Report, valued at $ 495, available for free – download your copy here.

To learn more about how MeridianLink can help you implement an aftermarket integration system, contact one of our digital lending experts today.

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