Bradesco is scrapping account fees and reworking the credit scoring algorithm for its new online-only bank, the institution’s chief information officer has told iupana.
Some 30,000 Brazilians opened accounts at the digital bank, branded Next, in its first quarter of operations. But Bradesco wants a higher proportion of the people that download the Next app to ultimately sign up for an account.
“We’ve been able to attract tons of prospects,” Mauricio Minas told iupana. Bradesco gave Next a push through an online advertising campaign on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram when it launched in the fourth quarter, he said. “But from the downloads up to converting them into an account, there’s still a road to go. The conversion rate is still lower than what we are forecasting for the future.”
Bradesco launched a series of measures to accelerate the conversion rate over the course of January. These involved new ways of approaching credit scoring.
“We learned that when providing credit to these new customers, we based it on credit score analysis,” said Minas. “Most millennials don’t have a credit score – and because of that, we’re denying credit, which is wrong. So there’s new algorithms being put in place to allow those guys to come to Next.”
At the same time, the bank is overhauling what it charges to have an account with Next.
“We thought we should charge for Next services from the very beginning, trying to avoid adverse selection,” said Minas.
“But at the end, we felt that people are asking for a free platform, and we’re willing to do so. This redefinition of the policy will probably make the conversion rate go up by a factor of two or three.”
Bradesco is also working to better tout the benefits of signing up with Next, Minas said.
“What we’re doing is to sell better what the other benefits customers have with Next. We’re giving free Uber rides – the first ride in the month is free,” he said. “For these guys this is a very strong value proposition, but it’s not being sold as it should.”
Through in-depth conversations with digital leaders at the region’s banks, startups and fintech investors, iupana conversa examines how technology is transforming Latin America’s financial services sector. The series will launch in full on February 12.
Mauricio Minas, CIO at Bradesco, discusses in depth the Brazilian institution’s experience developing and launching Next in the first episode.
Listen to a preview of the episode in the player above, in iTunes, or via your favorite podcast player.