CIBC banks on Adobe for a digital future.

CIBC adopted a sophisticated digital framework to deliver highly customized experiences to more than 10 million customers in Canada and the US.

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Established

1867

44,000+ employees
Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
www.cibc.com

Provides individual and business banking services to more than 10 million customers across Canada and the US.

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Objectives

Move away from third-party cookies and embrace a more robust customer engagement framework.

Deliver highly personalized and relevant ads, promotions and communications.

Use and reuse content in more flexible ways to target customers based on their specific behaviors.

Simplify and streamline content development and management processes.

Create an outstanding mobile app.

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Results

Reduced cost per acquisition (CPA) by 20% to 30% on Facebook campaigns.

Mobile conversion rates have risen 1.5x and web page conversions have nearly doubled.

Achieved a 65% gain in CPA across 3 primary lines of business.

Teams are saving tens of hours per day on content related development and management.

JD Powers ranked CIBC #1 for customer satisfaction among mobile banking apps in 2020.

Few industries have witnessed a digital revolution that parallels financial services. Over the last couple of decades, physical bank branches have morphed into smartphone apps and paper checks have evolved into instant electronic transfers. Staying at the leading edge of digital innovation and establishing deeper and tighter customer relationships is no longer an option. It’s the baseline for doing business.

 

Not all banking experiences are created equal, however. CIBC recognized that it’s critical to deliver a more personalized and relevant experience to both consumers and businesses. In an era when people are bombarded with irrelevant ads and too much trivial information, the company desired to take personalization to a new and better level.

 

The challenge was magnified by the bank’s desire to simultaneously prepare for the end of third-party online cookies. “We wanted to drive engagement and deepen existing relationships by better anticipating customer needs,” says Peter Papageorgiou, Senior Manager, Audiences at CIBC. “Our goal is to deliver highly customized experiences both online and through in-person interactions and direct targeting.”

 

CIBC turned to an Adobe technology framework that supports a highly orchestrated customer journey. This included Adobe Experience Manager, Adobe Audience Manager, Adobe Target and Adobe Analytics. Although the project required a realignment of teams and resources, the bank is now better equipped to address the digital needs of customers—and the expectations of the marketplace. CIBC can use and reuse content far more efficiently and engage with customers within a consent-driven first-party data model.

Checks and Balances

Today’s banking customers expect utility like functionality and meaningful interactions. Yet, increasingly stringent data privacy restrictions—driven by Apple’s IDFA consent requirements and Google phasing out cookies—add to the challenge of developing tight relationships and targeting customers with only the most relevant ads and promotions. EMarketer reports that 60% of current personalization is dependent on third-party cookies and Adobe has found that only 37% of professionals are prepared for a cookie-free future.


“The ability to tap indicators and measure behaviors in real-time so we can constantly adjust our propensity scoring has transformed the way we do business.”

 
Peter Papageorgiou

Senior Manager, Audiences, CIBC


For CIBC, cashing in on the opportunity meant building out a more flexible and scalable digital framework. Early on, the company identified a few core objectives: 

 

  • Use first-party cookies, connected to known customer data, to tap profile and past customer behaviors that would drive the next customer engagement.
  • Build out profiles with multiple IDs so that different groups could use profiles to better target customers with products and services.
  • Deliver customized experiences both online and through in-person interactions.
  • Introduce real-time scoring through first-party cookies and other data that would drive interactions.

 

A modular data-driven approach made it possible to use existing behavioral data to deliver highly targeted messages when customers log into their computers or use an ATM. A constantly changing propensity score adapts communication in real-time. “We don’t have to create new content for every interaction. We can reuse and recombine content to fit specific profiles and requirements in real-time,” Papageorgiou explains. This means, for example, that retail clients with excess funds see ads for savings while those receiving financial relief see ads for services that can help them.

 

Today, Adobe AEM operates across seven key sites and multiple lines of business—while connecting to a variety of data sources. This also makes it possible to deliver highly targeted mobile in-line ads to customers. Not only can CIBC display different ads and promotions within the same space, it can prioritize ads based on data in Adobe Target and tie in data from Adobe Audience Manager to build models that maximize responses. This has resulted in conversion rates that exceed 1.5x.

Cashing In on Digital

The move to a more modern data and content delivery framework has paid other dividends. AEM allows CIBC to quickly update product pages at scale. This saves tens of hours daily while making it easier for customers to setup direct deposit payments (CERB), apply for financial relief, lower credit card interest rates, and apply for mortgage deferrals. In many cases, these tasks can be completed within seconds. 


“We don’t have to create new content for every interaction. We can reuse and recombine content to fit specific profiles and requirements in real-time.”

 
Peter Papageorgiou

Senior Manager, Audiences, CIBC


The technology has delivered other major benefits. Since the pandemic began, CIBC has received 100,000 fewer calls to its call center while 850,000 customers have filed for financial assistance applications online—rather than having to visit branches. 

 

In fact, innovation has emerged at the center of the bank’s business framework. JD Powers ranked CIBC #1 for customer satisfaction among mobile banking apps in 2020. Now the company is looking to take engagement to an even higher level. Behavioral data-driven profiles and AI will open the door to even greater insights—and deeper customer connections. 

 

Says Papageorgiou: “The ability to measure and understand customer behavior in real-time is transforming the way we do business.”

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