Time To Move Past Legacy MCIF’s

Mark Weber
August 21, 2023

The triple win of enhanced analytics, automated marketing & ROI Tracking

The triple win of enhanced analytics, automated marketing, AI and ROI tracking.

For over 35 years, the MCIF (Marketing Customer Information File) has been the workhorse for countless credit union and bank marketers for consumer profiling, targeted marketing, product cross-selling, onboarding new relationships and reporting.

But that historical legacy model is changing fast in the current digital transformation revolution, even as some MCIF software is being retired, or no longer supported.

Three powerful changes have forever made the MCIF an increasingly less valuable tool of dynamic marketing relationship building, digital growth performance and retention:

  1. The power of cloud SaaS technology to leverage, simplify and visualize rich daily data analytics that can be used by multiple leaders, not just one marketing “power software user;”  
  2. The need for greater system integration via cloud-based API’s, enhanced metadata, and BI and machine learning tools to build simpler, automated, more intelligent queries, actionable relationship insights, predictive triggers and daily ROI tracking;  
  3. Dynamic mobile, online and payments transaction data that can be harnessed using AI tools and marketing automation, to drive enhanced journeys and deliver real-time relevant personalization offers across all channels.

This is the catalytic power of a “Last Mile” cloud marketing analytics technology.

The MCIF is one of many legacy data siloes and costly manual process flows

The information in MCIF’s and the ability to household members, geo-code addresses to de-duplicate and map data, identify product usage trends, and target opportunities is still useful. But it is dated data, and largely siloed in the marketing department. And amidst an industry-wide digital transformation and BI revolution, like countless other legacy software systems with time-consuming manual processes and spreadsheets, the MCIF ties up precious marketing and IT resources that can be automated.

With cloud technology, BI and AI advances, the MCIF has been rendered to a backwards-looking tool at what happened weeks or even months ago (i.e. descriptive analytics). And that’s far too late to proactively react in real time; adapt agile digital and social marketing strategies; or even respond to the dynamic needs – and lifestyle expectations of consumers that prize simple, intuitive brand experiences like those from Amazon, Lending Club and Chime.

And the next generation of financial cloud-based marketing technologies has arrived to profoundly advance the “Last Mile” of personalized omni-channel marketing to enhance and simplify dynamic customer experiences and digital relationship building: Strum Platform.

High Churn & Poor Onboarding & Reboarding is Killing Relationships and Profitability

Effective onboarding and dynamic digital personalization require a range of enhanced big data, intelligent life stage segmentation, customized relationship profitability models, and behavioral and predictive triggers most financial institutions lack in their data systems today, especially in MCIF software.  

Lackluster new member onboarding experiences, flat or declining NPS satisfaction scores and fast rising neo-bank competition is leading to increasing rates of costly churn losses. With the average cost of a new member now ranging between $200 - $1,000, that hit to performance and earnings is intolerable. According to Bain & Company research, the impact of stopping that churn is huge: even a modest 5% increase in retention can result in more than a 25% increase in profits.

Take the next step into cloud-based marketing analytics technology and increased ROI

Advanced digital marketing technologies enhance customer insights, deepen engagement and personalized experiences, while speeding advances in digital marketing and automated onboarding with open API’s that increase retention and generate profitable new accounts.

The cloud’s ability to finally track, measure, automate and visualize time-consuming manual cross-channel marketing campaigns, conversions and ROI into daily BI dashboards (with two-way data flow), not unlinked spreadsheets, is now a reality.

Advanced marketing technology platforms (e.g. Strum Platform) are designed to allow real time and daily proactive actions that give consumers easy ways across channels (SMS, mobile, website, digital, social, banner ads) to respond instantly and engage in deeper, more meaningful relationships tailored to their unique needs.

And leaders benefit from intelligent analytics insights, sales and profitability trend dashboards by segment audiences and channel usage they can now act upon to improve member experiences, marketing ROI and growth performance.

The benefits and advanced capabilities of SaaS cloud marketing analytics technology, simplified for multiple users to access, collaborate and deploy are overwhelming, and most importantly – reduce the time, impact and resources needed from IT teams:

  • Use lifestyle segmentation insights, relationship profitability modeling, intelligent algorithms and AI to create more intelligent queries, answers and insights
  • Deploy ML models and API’s to predict smarter individualized journeys, next-best cross-selling lists and “look alike” users
  • Mine the data lake for “at risk” consumers to proactively manage churn losses and increase retention before it’s too late
  • Leverage advanced digital marketing tools like retargeting, personalized web pages (with A/B testing), propensity triggers, SMS and optimized mobile emails to ensure a seamless journey based on user interests, channel preferences and life stage events.
  • Save massive marketing and IT staff time with ROI cost savings, by automating manual workflow processes to query, profile and target, create lists, track cross-channel results, conversions and ROI in real time visualized BI dashboard daily reports

The deep and rapid advancement of this next generation of “Last Mile” marketing analytics technologies to improve member BI insights, enhance user personalization and experiences across digital channels, track and visualize daily marketing ROI, and automate time-consuming manual processes using intelligent data and AI is simply too compelling to push off to another day.

It may be time to rethink the value and opportunity cost of your MCIF software and relationship performance today.

This piece was originally published in CUInsight.

Data Transformation

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