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Letter From The Chairman

Dear Colleague:

Earlier this year, the Economist printed a powerful chart capturing the plight of banks since the financial crisis. Between 2000 and 2009, the industry experienced fairly steadily revenue growth that significantly outpaced GDP growth. Since 2010, the story has been dramatically different, and average revenue growth is under 1%. Retail banking profits have resulted from temporary measures like reserve releases and cost cutting. In recent quarters, analysts have demanded to know how banks will create underlying revenue growth – and soon.

Pre-provision net revenue growth

Until this picture changes, our primary role as marketers and innovators must be to guide our institutions towards revenue growth. A major goal of the Financial Services Marketing & Innovation Symposium is to showcase approaches used by leaders inside and outside our industry to tackle this challenge. Roughly speaking (and inspired to use a sailing metaphor by the recent America’s Cup), we see three winning strategies:

  • Find the wind: Marketing to the pockets of profit that exist in today’s business. In one example, banks deepen relationships with valuable small business customers through innovations like loyalty app development and financial dashboards that offer insightful views of cash flow.
  • Outmaneuver the competitor: Finding ways to execute better. For example, real-time marketing evolves social medial messaging in response to the environment with a focus on maximizing relevancy and returns at the same time, and “big data” analysis of the customer journey drives improved segmentation strategies.
  • Add a sail: Innovating new approaches to attracting, developing and retaining customers, whether by generating leads from online social networks or by marketing new products like prepaid cards designed to meet customers’ evolving needs and preferences.
Please set sail for New York City to join us December 5th and 6th when we explore these topics and more. We will gather insights from thought leaders in financial services, customer experience trailblazers, and digital pioneers, and share perspectives with other executives in attendance who are grappling with similar challenges.


Timothy Spence Tim Spence
Oliver Wyman | Financial Services