Apps are a great way to engage your audience with great content anywhere Case Study: Creating Engagement in the Financial Industry Through Content and Mobile Applications
Creating engagement in the financial industry is about creating value for its customers. In this industry, creating value directly leads to revenue. Ayantek created two mobile applications for LPL Financial to create value through content and a Social, Mobile, Analytics, and Cloud (SMAC) based approach, resulting in higher customer engagement.
LPL Financial helps entrepreneurial financial advisors (customers) establish successful businesses by helping them manage the complexity of their investment practices, and enabling them to effectively assist their clients in achieving their financial goals. LPL does this by providing an integrated platform of proprietary technology, brokerage, and investment advisory services. As the nation’s largest independent broker/dealer, LPL Financial supports a network of more than 13,000 financial advisors.
A Robust Recruitment Tablet App
The first app built for LPL was an iPad application, to help recruit new advisors. The idea was to develop an iPad app that salespeople for the company could use to demonstrate LPL’s commitment to providing robust, up-to date and industry–leading tools to support its customers’ success.
The app had to provide a high-quality user experience of the proffered financial services, and serve as an example of the lengths the company was willing to go to help its people succeed. This meant it had to be graphically beautiful, highly functional, and easy to understand. It had to fit seamlessly into the salesperson’s pitch and provide all the information that might otherwise have been available in printed collateral. It had to make potential clients light up with the exciting possibilities of becoming an LPL Financial customer.
The result was an application full of rich content, data, and visuals that recruiters could use to deliver a sales pitch anywhere in a convenient manner. The keys to the high adoption rate (over 80%) among sales staff were the format, and focused and frequentlyupdated content. The application has been refreshed multiple times since its initial launch in 2012, won an Outstanding Achievement Award from the Interactive Media Council, and has become a key component of LPL Financial’s sales strategy.
Making a Portable Management Platform
The second mobile application was created for LPL Financial’s advisors. To date, advisors had used a home-grown, PC-based application called BranchNet to manage their accounts, conduct transactions, and generate reports, among other features. In addition, advisors consume LPL’s financial research in a number of ways, through Twitter and RSS feeds, primarily. The goal of the application was to provide many of the features and data provided by BranchNet on a mobile device.
Ayantek established a MVP (Minimum Viable Product) for a financial advisor app targeted for all platforms. In collaboration with LPL,we established and prioritized the functional requirements for the mobile app leveraging Ayantek’s integrated SMAC Stack approach. Utilizing social, mobile, analytics, and cloud technologies together, we chose to integrate these streams thus:
- Social – Integrating LPL Financials Twitter, Facebook and YouTube feed to allow an advisor to quickly get updated financial research
- Mobile – Providing immediate access to general financial information through a mobile app. The app will allow advisors the flexibility to access client account information on-demand
- Analytics – App usage and performance will be measured as a way to help to fine tune features and performance
- Cloud – General financial information including, stock information, financial headlines and market indices will be provided by cloud based services
Ayantek received an overwhelming response from LPL’s financial advisors on the day of the launch. They loved the freedom of using various cloud-based services integrated in the application, while simultaneously interacting with the financial analysts on social platform, all of which were accessible on their mobile devices. LPL’s team used the analytical data received from the app to monitor and help the financial analysts to maximize their services.
Developing a successful digital strategy requires effective integration of the available supporting technologies. Using targeted content and the social and mobile channels, analytics that provide insights on which decisions can be made, and the cloud maximizes efficiencies and creates value. For financial services in particular, the effective combination of such technologies can make the difference in a very competitive market.
Karo was born in Poland, and learned to speak English by watching "Saved by the Bell" reruns during her first summer in the U.S., which has left her unable to go through life without occasionally breaking the fourth wall. As Percussion's content marketing manager, she oversees and creates content that drives website traffic, engages followers, and helps fill the marketing and sales funnel. She writes about content management, content marketing, SEO, social media and web design, and how to make it all less complicated.