DALBAR Reveals Canadian Banks Missing Opportunities With Mass Affluent Newcomers
TORONTO, Sept. 9, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The last few years has shown a surge in the banks’ approach to new immigrants especially those in the mass affluent category. Products and services have been tailored or newly created to serve immigrants better, and media advertising has echoed the banks’ voices, making themselves known to Newcomers. Today’s banks are fiercely fighting to obtain the loyalty of Newcomers in a saturated market where most Canadians already have established relationships with their institution.
In light of the banks’ pursuit, DALBAR commissioned a BranchMonitor study to see just how well the banks are doing in serving the needs of Newcomers to Canada. During a 4-week test period, 42 mass affluent Newcomers were asked to visit 7 Canadian banks: BMO, CIBC, HSBC, National Bank, RBC, Scotia, and TD. The study was conducted in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Newcomers fell into 2 distinct categories: landed immigrants or international students. The common thread among all Newcomers was that they were deemed mass affluent with at least $250,000 in investable assets (either of their own or from their sponsoring family), and all had been in Canada for less than 2 years.
Each Newcomer visited the bank to complete 4 requests: open a chequing account, apply for a credit card, inquire about foreign exchange services and discuss applying for a mortgage in Canada.
Analyzing the results of this study has shown that there is a considerable gap between the tailored offer and the actual delivery. The vision is there, but the execution falls short. Anita Lo, Vice-President at DALBAR commented that, “the study revealed that there is no clear front runner, no company that has hit the ball out of the park. Service has to catch up to the promotional value and resources put into these campaigns.”
The mass affluent Newcomers reported inconveniences, such as credit checks being done unnecessarily, or unbeknownst to them; credit cards being denied despite the understanding that no deposits or Canadian proof of income would be required; and mortgage solutions or premier banking services not being introduced at all (in 95% and 93% respectively), clients had to prompt for this information.
The findings are clear; ample opportunity exists amongst the banks to solidify the Newcomers’ retail branch experience. For Newcomers, this is their first experience with a Canadian bank, and setting the tone right at the initial meeting opens up endless possibilities for the future. The Newcomer demographic is different than the regular Canadian client, and as such, must be approached accordingly.
About DALBAR Inc.: As the world’s premier financial services strategy and operations research firm, DALBAR, Inc. helps leading enterprises develop, build, and operate strong businesses that deliver sustained shareholder value growth. DALBAR’s proprietary business design techniques, combined with its specialized industry knowledge and behavioural research expertise, enable companies to anticipate changes in customer priorities and the competitive environment, and then design their businesses and improve operations to seize opportunities created by those changes. The firm serves clients in the Americas and Europe.