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Illustrative Customer Proposition Development and Segmentation Assignments
Banking sub. of a Life Company
New Mortgage Proposition

This innovative firm had developed a sound business as the result of previous innovation, but was suffering from the effects of price-based competition in its core mortgage business. It needed to find a way of building value for itself and clients, since adding more low persistency discount business was value destroying. We worked with the client’s research and finance teams to identify a series of tactics that would increase customer lock on and result in improved persistency. These insights were then used as the basis for five new propositions that were recently launched to target segments of new customers. The intention then is to introduce these propositions to existing customers. (ref 401)

Major Composite Insurer
New Workplace Proposition

This insurer wished to explore opportunities outside insurance in the provision of services and benefits to employees in the workplace. We carried out extensive research into the needs of employees and helped to frame a new workplace marketing proposition which involved intranets, workplace marketing and catalogues to engage employees in deciding on their flex benefits package and other services offered on discounts. The business was launched successfully and has now been bought out by one of its major investors with a corporate client base to lever. (ref 404)

UK Private Bank
Proposition and Brand Strategy

For a niche private bank we carried out research with existing customers and prospects to determine how the bank was currently perceived. From this we helped to strengthen the existing customer propositions, and in particular, new propositions in financial planning and on-line banking. (ref 388)

Major Retail Bank
New Proposition Development

The client had created a new brand, and had identified the need to bring more value to the customer through enhanced and novel customer propositions. We worked with their team to create a pipeline of propositions which were based on a strategy of personalisation and which enabled customers to shape the nature of the services they received. These new propositions involved hybrids between traditional products, reflecting the customers’ need to have a product with a range of characteristics which made a coherent whole for a given fee rather than bundle of existing products at a much higher cost. (ref 405)

Major Retail Bank
Strategy for Customer Management
and Cross-Selling

Our client had the lowest level of products per customer in the sector and wished rapidly to improve cross-selling performance, but in a manner that would have minimal systems impact. We worked with management to identify the top 20 initiatives from around the organisation that would impact cross selling and developed these as sales and service propositions as a basis for prioritisation based on the scale of immediate revenue impact and minimal IT involvement. Some of these involved system-based triggers to identify emerging needs, but most involved sales and service propositions that could be taken up directly by customer-facing staff. We piloted the most promising propositions in branches and with telesales teams that resulted in typical increases in lead generation, referral and closure rates of up to 25%. (ref 402)

European Private Bank and Asset Manager
Business Development

For this UK subsidiary of a French institution we determined the market opportunities for private client services in the UK. In the course of this, we developed a new approach to client segmentation based on behavioural factors, which was more suited to the clients profile and access to market. We then worked with the client to develop a business plan for achieving an ambitious set of growth objectives, which was used successfully to gain additional investment from the parent. (ref 352)

Mortgage Provider
Strategy for Selling Protection
to Mortgage Customers

This leading mortgage lender was keen to increase the value of its mortgage book through the sale of protection products. However, we identified early on that a key driver of value was increased persistency of the mortgage relationship, rather than brokerage on protection. We therefore developed a range of protection products that complemented the mortgage in terms of their features, pricing structures and excesses, and were seen to add value to the mortgage relationship. The first three will be launched later this year. (ref 403)

Growing Bancassurance in Upscale Markets

We worked with the personal investment subsidiary of this leading bank to build a strategy for offering personal portfolio management services to upscale clients within their customer base. This involved qualitative and quantitative research amongst sales people, branch staff, customers and prospects, as well as detailed analysis of the competition, product profitability and channel economics. From this we identified a number of priority segments defined by a blend of wealth and attitudinal factors, via which the bank could double the scale of the existing business. We then helped to develop several new propositions for each segment and the associated sales, service and communications approaches. (ref 381)

US Insurer
Entry into the UK Mutual Fund Market

For a leading insurance company we identified the growth potential in the UK mutual funds market. We then developed an entry strategy, and, working closely with management, we identified customer proposition, sales and marketing strategies for the launch. (ref 382)

US Bank
Assessment of Online Advice Entry Strategy

This institution had created a new online advisory service in the US for upscale individuals, and wished to migrate it to the UK, and then the Continental markets. We analysed the market for online services, the drivers of performance and likely reactions to pricing, and recommended significant enhancements to the basic proposition and an entry strategy. (ref 383)

Retail Bank
Cross-Selling To Existing
Customers of a Retail Bank

For a UK retail bank we established a strategy for cross-selling services to their existing customer bases. This was based firstly on an assessment of the total spend of their current clients and on the banks’ share of this across a wide range of products. We then researched the most promising groups to understand their underlying attitudes to their relationships with the bank and their preferences for sales process, service and communication. (In particular, the client was very interested in the potential role of remote and electronic processes.) We used this information, combined with an analysis of product contribution and acquisition costs, to create a set of new product and service propositions with their associated sales and communications strategies. (ref 384)

Tax Practice of Major Accountancy
Growth through Improved Service

This leading A corporate tax practice had been losing profitability through progressive commoditisation and de-skilling of its services in preparing tax returns for it clients. We interviewed the finance directors of its top clients, all FTSE 250 companies, and recommended new approaches for levering the filing relationship into more lucrative service provision. (ref 389)

Professional Institute
Communications Strategy

A major professional institute, faced with change in its core industry, needed to reframe the professional focus of its members and communicate that change to members and other stakeholders. We carried out in depth research with members in all the major sectors covered by the profession, and other stakeholders who were affected by the profession to understand the scope of the required change and how best to communicate it, and implement it through CPD and new member training. (ref 360)

Global Information Services
Retail Online Strategy

The leading UK provider of financial and news information to the institutional markets decided to lever its resource base, network and brand to enter the retail market in the UK Germany and the US markets. We worked with the project team to devise a strategy for the UK that involved targeting two segments, which we defined based on our own original and extensive original research. These required our client to play the roles of information and execution services provider and broker. We worked with the project team to define two distinct customer propositions for the two segments of investor and helped to assemble the information and service wrap each required. The service was launched successfully and has a seven-figure client base. Later we reviewed the strategy in the US, and made a number of recommendations. (ref 361)

Corporate Communications
European Growth Strategy

The leading UK provider of corporate investor information wished to upgrade its delivery technology to include the internet as a basis for accessing new growth. We reviewed the opportunities in its markets in the major European markets and developed a new strategy to deliver corporate information to investors based on a proposition of low cost and minimal delay. (ref 362)

Advertising Agency
Entry into Consultancy

This well-known advertising agency wished to capitalise on its ability to advise clients on marketing strategy as a precursor to creating advertising by establishing a consultancy to earn fees alongside the agency work. We ran workshops with the senior managers and three partners to explore the issues and crystallise the potential proposition, but concluded that there would be a conflict of interest. (ref 363)

Consulting Actuary
Growth via Improved Sales Performance

This leading firm of consulting actuaries had been losing mandates with corporate, defined benefit pension schemes. We carried out a market positioning study by interviewing pension trustees and pension managers. We then developed recommendations for how to strengthen the brand, re-position the service proposition and how it should be enacted through the sales pitch and ongoing service process. (ref 385)

US Life Assurer
Development of New Modular Products

We worked with this life insurance company to develop novel customer propositions based on modular components. These included investment, critical illness, term assurance and PHI. We then carried out trend research, customer focus groups and internal sales workshops to test the initial thinking, and to recommend which of the modular structures was most attractive. (ref 390)

Rapid Diagnostic of Pensions Strategy

The life company subsidiary of this major UK clearing bank needed a rapid appraisal of their effectiveness in the group personal pensions (GPP) market to inform a near term decision to reposition a new product launch as part of a cohesive group-wide GPP strategy. Due to time constraints, we conducted the analysis on the basis of readily available data and our own experience in the pensions sector. It became quickly apparent that there was a huge opportunity to sell GPPs and other services to existing banking customers, in particular small businesses, but that the proposed new product would be unsuitable for this market segment. We identified further obstacles in a brand with weak pensions credibility and in a sales process that relied heavily on generalist advisors with too little pensions expertise. As a result, the product launch was postponed and a full strategic review has been set in train. (ref 366)

Composite Insurer
Identifying Opportunities
in the Post-retirement Market

For a large composite insurer, we assessed the opportunities in the post-retirement market, in particular, for annuity products, and helped to develop a low-cost distribution channel targeted at the most promising segments. This involved a close study of the current pattern of distribution for annuities, a new segmentation, and an understanding of evolving legislation. (ref 368)

European Life & Pensions
Growth via Improved Sales Force Model

A leading life assurer wished to review the relationship it had established with its self-employed salesforce in the light of changing Government policy and new FSA regulation following Pickering, CP121 and Sandler. We worked with the client to develop a programme involving financial analysis from the various sales models that had evolved over the last 5 years, from individual self-employed salespeople to substantial practices with their own administration, and a review of alternative sales models that were being used elsewhere in Australia, Scandinavia and Germany. (ref 387)

Corporate Insurer
New Roles Along The Value Chain

This leading insurance company had been experiencing declining profitability and wished to establish closer linkages with its clients to combat pressures from brokers. We interviewed a number of leading corporate clients to understand their perspectives on the various roles of broker and insurer, and explored with brokers the sensitivities around insurer / client contact. From this work we were able to develop a client relationship strategy that emphasized the presence of the insurer in the relationship and minimized switching and which was compatible with the full involvement of brokers. (ref 392)

Composite Insurer
Development of High Value-added
Service Proposition

The London Market division of this well-known UK Composite was experiencing a severe commoditisation of the services it offered to large multinationals and a general shift of market leverage to brokers. Working closely with senior management and front-line underwriters, we built the skeleton of an enhanced and differentiated service proposition to take back the market initiative from brokers and to reflect the overall margin erosion in traditional risk underwriting and the growing market for fee-based risk services. (ref 393)

Corporate Bank
Segment-Based Business
Development to Corporates

A well-established Scottish bank asked us to help them to develop a strategy for extending their position in certain segments across traditional banking, transmission, capital markets and custody markets. We carried out in-depth interviews with finance directors and chief executives in thirty companies in their target markets and explored their existing relationships with banks, their purchase processes in place, how they evaluated new banks and their perceptions of our client. We then helped them to strengthen their proposition for each segment. (ref 394)

Building Society
Levering Mutuality

For a building society committed to mutuality we worked with senior management to understand the options open to them to enhance the value derived from their mutual status, and to explore how this could be built into their customer propositions. Hitherto they had emphasized a price-based proposition that we discovered had very little financial impact on the bulk of their voting members. Through a combination of analysis of customer group profitability and attitudinal research with customers, we helped management to define a range of more compelling customer propositions that would be successful in defending against the pressure to demutualise. (ref 375)

Major Charge Card
Growth in Travel Services

For this leading charge card operator we developed a growth strategy for travel management services for the small corporate sector, which involved establishing a clearer focus on the needs of particular segments. This was based on an extensive review of the market and a segmentation of its commercial client base, which was used to develop growth forecasts by segment. (ref 376)

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