Product Management or lack of Customer Understanding

With the turmoil which is currently being experienced in the financial services industry I spent some time this week seeing what Innovations the competition were offering in order to retain their current customers and attract more.  Surprisingly it seems some of the major players have a product set which actually discourages potential customers.  Here are two of the more memorable cases I found: 

  1. One Institution was offering an internet savings account with a favourable rate of interest however surprisingly this cannot be operated stand alone and you must open a Cheque Account (In Branch of course) to fund the account, plus have a cashcard.  When asked whether the card could be deselected the answer was no, just leave it in a drawer at home….  
  2. Another Institution who was also offering a very competitive savings rate which surprisingly is only being offered in branch, informed me that to discuss it further I needed to make and appointment and they would offer me one in 10 DAYS…  

As consumers realise they are part of a Global Market and have the option to shop around via the Internet and engage with any organisation around the world the short-sightedness of some companies is unacceptable and with the proliferation of new technologies and the rise of Generation C will see their market share slowly diminish.   

Financial institutions can no longer assume it is their way or the highway and Product Management will become a key factor in attracting and retaining your customer base.


Author: Steve Wakefield

Steve Wakefield is an experienced Innovator presently based in London.

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