Maturity of customer data: Postbank

Digital Reinvention
22/02/2023 Interview
profile picture of Lina Varbanova Lina Varbanova Eurobank Group Head of CRM Department

Lina Varbanova is Head of CRM Department at Postbank. She tells Qorus and Wavestone how they utilize data in order to enhance their customer experience.

In your opinion, how does the use of data and the personalization of offers and paths respond to development or loyalty issues for your organization? What transformation does this evolution presuppose?

The traditional banking market in Bulgaria is highly saturated. Postbank is the third largest retail bank in the country, out of 24 other players. We consider the usage of data as one of our key competitive advantages. In the past few years, we have invested significantly into creating a data-centric team and building adequate technological infrastructure that allows us to be flexible in terms of personalization of offers and creating various customer journeys. We focused on shortening the execution path when creating direct customer communication and significantly increasing its variety. This has led to a double increase in the success rates of sales and activation campaigns, proving that you need not only to reach the right audience, but also to convey the right message on time.

This topic has two main streams: the cultural change and the technological maturity (of the organization and in general). 

Creating the right team that has both business understanding and tech knowledge is one of the biggest challenges incumbent banks face when embarking on this journey. The collisions between such a team and the traditional organizational processes and structures are many and strong management support is vital for this transformation to work out.

The tech maturity of the organization defines its willingness to adopt new technologies. This is not a onetime exercise, as the field develops constantly, bringing in new opportunities with ML/AI, RPA and blockchain being the latest hot trends. Flexibility and creating a learning culture is therefore key for the organization. One less explored topic is the feasibility of the tech itself. Not all technologies are ready to be used across any organization or market and the ability to recognize the ones that will create a strategic fit is vital for utilizing the bank’s resources in the right way. If we take NLP as an example, its development in English is far more advanced than any other language, and bringing an NLP tool to market in Bulgarian requires additional investment and much more development time.

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