2020 Winner: Standard Chartered Singapore uses analytics for card personalisation & enhances retirement & mortgage offers – Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards


Standard Chartered has won three categories at the virtual RBI Asia Trailblazer Awards 2020 for their personalisation efforts in Singapore, which in the case of the local credit cards and loan team came in the Best Application of Data Analysis category for their work on three different, overlapping initiatives, which have delivered higher conversion rates, increased spend and reduced complaints.

The cards and loans team at Standard Chartered Singapore carried out extensive focus groups back in 2018, surveys and client feedback schemes to gather data about how to improve client engagement via personalisation and to find out how to deliver better services and revenue. They then used this data in the next year and in 2020 onwards to roll out a number of data-driven initiatives, as follows:

Credit Card Funds Transfer (CCFT) offer to Current/Savings Account (CASA) clients: Also known as balance transfers CCFT are short-term loans offered to credit card clients to allow them to convert the existing credit line on their credit card to cash. The loans can be used to finance short-term obligations, with the flexibility of monthly repayments within a fixed tenure.

The service was launched to provide clients with an innovative way to meet their immediate need for cash via existing products. An SMS text message is sent to eligible SCB credit card clients on a real-time basis when debit card transactions, ATM withdrawals, online purchases or online funds transfers are made, giving them options. The scope was then further extended to clients without credit cards if they consumed other banking services and wanted to get a CCFT amount by applying for a card. It effectively became an alternative digital card acquisition channel.

Advanced analytical rules built into the digital channel look out for the relevant transactions and immediately trigger a customised offer by SMS to the client. The end-to-end process of identifying eligible clients and triggering an SMS happens within seconds thanks to the data analytical engine.

The SMS contains a unique URL, which requires the client to enter minimal information and provide a consent to apply for a CCFT. Clients will receive the funds they have applied for in their CASA account, in the next two working days. This enhances the client banking experience where clients receive relevant offers in a fast, simple, personalised and efficient manner.

Benefit: The CCFT conversion rate is at 10.6%, which is 14x better than general SMS’ alone, delivering incremental revenue of SG$197,000 upon launch last year. Improved cross-selling added 1,925 credit card applications from CASA customers, which meant a 1.2m uplift in monthly spend and extra revenue of SG$23,000 once launched. These numbers continue to advance.

Smart Digital Banners: Previously all banners on the SC Mobile App were static and not driven by real-time analytical models, resulting in a very poor client experience. There are instances where credit or loan products that clients were not eligible for were broadcasted to them, and they were rejected after a long and tedious process of filling in the application. This issue was resolved by the launch in May 2019 of Smart Digital Banners that used data analytics to refine and perfect targeting.

The real-time analytics engine can:

o Identify the client from the SC Mobile App.
o Scan for client profile and product holdings in the card and CASA systems, creating a customer DNA profile.
o Base the DNA and analytical model on data robots and call for the most relevant banner offer to be displayed.
o Simplify forms with pre-filled details and offer amount/pricing targeting.
o Banners are automatically replaced with the next relevant banner or service when a product is applied for.
o A strong feedback loop between online/mobile channels and the analytical engine ensures on-going refinement.
o Advanced tracking mechanisms on banners improve data collection and future refinement.

Benefit: Within 60 days of its May 2019 launch, Smart Digital Banners on the SC Mobile App had delivered 800 new CCFT clients releasing SG$3.8m in fresh disbursals; savings accounts had garnered SG$12m; priority banking offers attracted SG$$3.4m in funds to the bank; and EasyPay instalments meant SG$0.5m of balances were converted.

Digital engagement spends campaign & Gamification tool: Cashback Ahoy: Awareness and participation in credit card spend campaigns tend to drop off after the third week of launch, so Standard Chartered Singapore decided to use its digital and analytics platform to help improve engagement via gamification. Launched in December 2018, clients get a weekly unique URL via SMS messaging to play the ‘Cashback Ahoy’ game. This invites them to view updated spends and get potential cashbacks during a campaign. It is further enhanced for clients with qualified spends of SG$500+ who can visit ‘Cashback Island’ to win additional cashbacks from SG$2-108 if they navigate the surrounding seas in the game. Relevant personalisation data is extracted by the analytics engine and uploaded to a web server where the game is hosted.

Benefit: Effective targeting and good rewards meant zero complaints were received during promotions and higher response rates experienced for products and/or higher spends on credit cards. At the last count Cashback Ahoy had delivered an overall spend uplift of SG$38m.

Retirement & mortgage teams win at SC Singapore
The Singaporean mortgage team at Standard Chartered won the Best Mortgage Offering category at the virtual RBI Asia Trailblazer Awards 2020 for a unique offer they are making to affluent clients that have a lot of money with the bank.

The AUM-Linked Mortgage Offer is aimed at those with at least SG$$200,000 of assets under management (AUM) with the bank in funds or investments, making them a Priority Banking client. With this status better mortgage pricing on SCB’s variable rate packages becomes possible.

Unveiled in April 2019, the mortgage proposition was a first in the marketplace. It differs from traditional mortgage packages or interest offset options that look at salary and so forth. Instead this offers a structured mortgage proposition that looks at traditional metrics, but also takes into account client deposit or investment holdings, prioritising these to offer discretionary personalised pricing using the power of analytics.

The Singaporean retirement team at Standard Chartered won the Best Retirement Product & Service Initiative at the virtual RBI Asia Awards for a new Health & Wealth proposition that aims to help clients future-proof themselves by planning for their retirement early.

A bank-commissioned 'Retirement Readiness' survey and subsequent data analysis showed that typically 70% of Singaporeans were not fully ready for retirement. There was insufficient awareness of the wealth solutions that could generate adequate returns for their old age, which the bank decided to address with a three-pillared response:

Relevant product solutions have been developed that are Singaporean-centric and catered to the profile of local residents. These are offered in conjunction with Fullerton Fund Management. An exclusive partnership developed a new suite of investment solutions which clients can use to invest for the long-term and grow their retirement funds more easily.

Empowering clients with new education materials and tools help them to make better informed decisions.

Trusted advice protocols and tools help enhance retirement planning and deliver needs-based solutions that can address each individual’s requirements.

Standard Chartered Singapore also achieved Highly Commended (HC) status in two other categories at the RBI Asia Trailblazer Awards 2020: • HC: Best Credit Card Initiative; • HC: Best Payment Innovation.


The Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards is an annual platform that celebrates the best in class retail banking institutions and individuals for their innovative service offering and commitment to customer excellence.

If you would like to share your incredible consumer finance journey, then register for the 13th Annual Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards 2022 and submit your entry!