Financial literacy is a fundamental part of making smart decisions about money matters. Not having the financial education necessary to make important life decisions can be detrimental in the long run, making it nearly impossible to set goals and achieve important milestones. However, despite the importance of financial literacy, “two-thirds of American adults can’t pass a basic financial literacy test.”1 With such high levels of financial illiteracy, it’s no wonder that many people find themselves facing heavy financial burdens.
Without an understanding of basic concepts like numeracy, interest compounding, inflation, and risk diversification, people are not well equipped to make informed decisions about their finances. Consumers who fail to understand the concept of interest compounding, for example, spend more on transaction fees, run up bigger debts, and incur higher interest rates on loans. While financial literacy rates differ between the major advanced and emerging economies in the world, still only 57% of American adults are financially literate.2Financial Institution as Customer Advocates
When it comes down to it, consumers expect their financial institution to help them make better financial decisions. On a global scale “60% of consumers agree that “banks have an important role to play in helping people achieve their life goals through their expertise.”3 It’s clear that consumers are looking for their banks and credit unions to help them achieve what’s important in their lives - but are financial institutions rising to the challenge?
Although most financial institutions have some sort of customer programs intended to help their customers become more financially literate, most are out of touch when it comes to delivering that information in a way that’s relevant in today’s digitally connected world. Most people today view messaging as their preferred method of communication. In the US, “89% of consumers would like to use messaging to communicate with businesses. However, only 48% of businesses are equipped to communicate with their customers through messaging.”4 This represents a missed opportunity to connect with customers on their channel of choice. Furthermore, “the average consumer uses 3 different messaging apps a week and has 3 different messaging apps on their phone’s home screen. What’s more, “messaging is already larger than social media, with 3 billion users worldwide compared to 2.5 billion users for social media.”4
Conversational AI Can Improve Customers’ Financial Wellbeing
Conversational AI “refers to the use of messaging apps, speech-based assistants and chatbots to automate communication and create personalized customer experiences at scale.”5 This type of technology has the power to help financial institutions connect with their customers on a deeper level and offer meaningful financial advice that helps them make better decisions with their money in real-time.
As messaging continues to take center stage as the preferred method of communication among consumers, more and more financial institutions are investing in conversational AI to fit into their customers’ lifestyles. In fact, “84% of [financial institutions] plan to deploy a chatbot solution within the next 18 months.”6 And the truth is, financial institutions that aren’t investing in conversational AI are already at risk of falling behind.
Messaging channels are much more than an opportunity to service customers with a much lower cost than traditional channels such as branches and call centers. They give financial institutions a huge opportunity to engage and build trust with consumers in ways that weren’t previously possible. In fact, “more than 3/4 of 22 - 49 year olds are interested in using a virtual financial coach.”7 A virtual coach is able to provide insights and recommendations to customers that are proactive, personalized, contextual and relevant—all delivered through a channel that most customers already prefer. Conversational AI also gives financial institutions the chance to have conversations with a larger number of customers about their financial wellbeing than they would have been able to afford through traditional channels.
How MX Can Help
Today’s tech-savvy consumers are interested in a conversational AI-powered solution to improve their financial lives. Fortunately, with the use of technology, financial institutions are uniquely positioned to improve their customers’ financial literacy, and ultimately, help them reach their financial goals. With AI-driven tools, financial institutions can provide their customers’ with the financial information they need when they need it most.
MX partners with forward-thinking innovators like Finn AI to deliver powerful solutions that combine clean and enhanced data with a personalized digital-first experience through conversational AI—enabling both companies to deliver on their shared vision for customer advocacy. Through our shared partnership, financial institutions will be able to help more of their customers improve their financial health by making better day-to-day money decisions.