October 05, 2010

Among the themes prominent through the first day of the Bank Systems & Technology Executive Summit in San Diego were marketing communications, social media and analytics, and their role in driving business and IT.

As Richard Martino, SVP Market Analytics & Performance Solutions for U.S. Bank discussed, gaining greater understanding of customers through advanced analytics presents an opportunity to make more educated decisions and, ultimately, grow business. Martino's team developed U.S. Bank's customer insight platform, which helps the bank manage what it knows about each customer to influence decisions.

"We learned along the way we can make money doing that stuff,." Martino says. "And we tracked that into a way where now the analytics part of the company is becoming part of the culture."

But the trick isn't always in doing the math, or crunching numbers, Martino adds. Rather finding people who can take the data and tell a story from it is a key to making that data work for bank business.

"That expertise is scarce, though," Martino cautions.

Data is raw material, Martino explains. Taking that raw material and finding the value in it, and finding ways to apply the wisdom gained through multiple channels.

"What we’re doing is improving the odds of success," Martino says. "And we do that by leveraging that data for multiple uses."

Insight gained can shape customer experience, help mitigate risk and improve the odds of success.

"If you’re considering making investments in analytics, in decision support – whatever term you want to throw at it – the way that value is created is by making different decisions than you otherwise would," Martino says.