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eStatements: The Lost Member Communication Channel?

A recent CUinsight article by this topic explores the untapped up-side in marketing via the eStatements channel. The post was made by a vendor in this business. Nothing wrong with selling, but...

In my experience, migrating a user from paper to eStatements is a very good thing in a connected world.

However, when a paper statement is delivered, it is usually opened. The envelope is tossed/recycled. Inserts not a native part of the statement are almost always tossed/recycled without a look... or with a brief glance. That's why response rates are so low for statement stuffers. The statement itself may be glanced over... possibly even used for (gasp) balancing ... so old school! Generally just filed to gather dust until the date with the shredder. Promotions integrated onto the face of the statement have a better chance of getting viewed a few times.

When the user moves to eStatements, the experience changes to... The eStatement is loaded into the repository. An email notification (or other notification mechanism) goes out declaring that the statement has arrived. That is deleted or filed. The user frequently never accesses the statement until/unless some particular need for that arises... such as doing taxes, finding an out of balance, etc. So while eStatements have lots of positives, increasing engagement and enhanced cross-selling isn't among them. Those actually decrease. Now there are a few really good ways to engage the few users who do pull up eStatements, which is nice. The advantage is they're online and can respond in real time to cross-selling prompts. The problem is one of scale. It's a bit like PFM. There's some truly great stuff that full engagement PFM can enable... but so few users are active with PFM... like eStatements...

Does it make the short list of things that get your time today to work on promotions to groups of users so small that after segmentation, response attrition, qualification attrition, and closing attrition... you don't wind up with much? If you answer, "Yes", then I applaud you. Your organization is likely both relatively large and better staffed for cross-selling than most I've seen.

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Comments: (3)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 11 February, 2013, 14:12Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

My experience resonates well with your views about how eStatements are not suitable for increased cross-selling. As I'd highlighted in my Finextra post titled, Save Costs But Lose Revenues With eBills And eStatements, because of better open-rates and a more natural advertising experience, "Most advertisers... are willing to pay a premium for advertising on printed documents compared to eBills or eStatements."

Michael Wright
Michael Wright - Striata | Secure Document Delivery - London 11 February, 2013, 15:12Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

I can see where you are headed with this idea - but you have not considered the opportunity to send the eStatement as a encrypted attachment to an email, using the email body as valuable real estate for cross selling and marketing.

I get my Barclaycard statement this way and signed up for contactless payments off a marketing link on the email.

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 12 February, 2013, 09:26Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Oh, I keep getting such offers but, since I don't intend to open the attachment, I delete such emails w/o opening them just after reading their subject. 

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