December 5, 2022

Banco Bolivariano shares its experience using WhatsApp as a communication channel

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Banco Bolivariano is one of the most important financial institutions in Ecuador. Using WhatsApp and its chatbot called Avi24, it provides 24/7 assistance to all its customers to generate efficient and immediate solutions. 

What mainly differentiates their strategy is that they knew how to interpret the needs of customers by providing attention through a channel with which they are already familiar. In this way, Banco Bolivariano was able to take advantage of a channel such as WhatsApp not only to receive queries but also to capture leads. For this reason, it has been recognized at the Aivo Awards 2022 in the category of Outstanding Experience in New Channels. 

On this occasion, Martín Frascaroli (CEO of Aivo), spoke with Ronald Romero (Virtual Channels Manager of Banco Bolivariano), to learn more about its customer service strategy through WhatsApp. 


Transactional queries in a fast, expeditious and frictionless way.

What advantage did this initiative give the bank compared to traditional channels?

Following our strategy of virtual channels and products in general, we always want to be in the place where the customer wants to interact with the bank and from that point of view, WhatsApp was a key channel to offer transactional queries from the bank in a fast, expeditious and frictionless manner. Why do I say this, expeditious and frictionless? Because it is important for the customer to engage with a channel with which they are already fully conversant, and familiar. 

WhatsApp, today, is a channel that everyone has mastered and is almost part of our daily lives. It is, by far, the application used on all customers' smartphones, regardless of the bank. So, with that in mind, it has been a super important channel to solve the first line of customer service. 

We have obviously 24/7 immediate availability. Through Aivo's platform, we can understand what our customers' needs are, requirements that the bot doesn't understand, and so we can create new interactions to suit the way our customers write and consult. 

So, in short, WhatsApp is a very important channel, Aivo's platform has helped us to refine and sharpen the pencil, as they say, to make this interaction as frictionless as possible for our customers.

If you were to tell us what percentage of customer service is done on WhatsApp, do you have a number in your head?

We started this in 2019 and there was only 33%, more or less, of the interaction. Today WhatsApp is 72% of interactions. In other words, it is by far the most used channel by our customers. 

Related article: How to Integrate Whatsapp in Your Digital Marketing Strategy

Added value without additional billing

This last year the bank took a turn from answering not only frequently asked questions or transactional issues but started selling, to generating leads through WhatsApp. How are they doing?

We are doing excellent. There are complementary services that the bank offers to enrich the customer experience. And precisely by highlighting this opportunity, we can very easily capture a lead with a customer interaction. In other words, the customer interacts with our chatbot, with Avi24, and is sent a recommendation for a service and the customer says "I'm interested" or "I'm not interested". 

To give you a very quick metric like that, let's say that we've grown 300% in lead acquisition through recommendation. Before, somewhere out there there was a way for you to get to this service, but when we recommended it, we grew by 300% in lead acquisition. 

It is generating added value for the client. When you sign up for an account or a credit card, whether at Banco Bolivariano or any other bank, you have some standard or basic services and then you get some complementary services, a portfolio of additional services that generate added value for the client. This added value is often a value that is obviously billed additionally, but it generates a lot of value for our customers and this is one of the services that we are offering through WhatsApp leads. We have almost 200,000 customers subscribed to a service that generates a lot of notification value. 

You were one of the first to automate the service on Instagram. What was the logic, what were the results, what do you do there? 

It was very interesting. I think that to date, no bank, at least in Ecuador, has a chatbot service on Instagram

What we were looking for is the same objective, we were pursuing the diversification issue that we always pray that customers can solve. In social networks, I would say that one of the most polite networks out there is Instagram. Generally, no one goes on Instagram to complain as it happens on other social networks. So there we have a very interesting flow because there are things that are dealt with by our Community Management group and there are other things that are referred to the chatbot. So there we have a flow, a bifurcation when it is a complaint or something that cannot be solved by the chatbot and then the chatbot. 

Right now we're in our early stage because it's still so new, maybe customers aren't used to interacting with a bot on Instagram. It's still growing but I'm sure next year we'll have another nomination like this and we'll be able to share more interaction figures with you. But it has been well received by our customers, that word of mouth that Banco Bolivariano is always innovating in new ways and new channels always helps us a lot to keep working for our customers. 

Do you want to achieve these results?

If you haven't already, you can check out the full list of featured clients in the Aivo Awards and discover the story behind their conversational bots.

And if you'd like to implement our technology into your customer service strategy, don't hesitate to schedule a call with one of our representatives.

Are you looking for new ways to improve your CX?

Our customer service solutions powered by conversational AI can help you deliver an efficient, 24/7 experience  to your customers. Get in touch with one of our specialists to further discuss how they can help your business.