As we’ve seen in this series, the Efma-Accenture Distribution and Marketing Innovation Awards celebrate the latest, most disruptive innovations in the banking industry. As a major networking event and product showcase, the awards are also a great chance to take stock of the trends that are shaping the industry.

One of the most interesting of these at last year’s awards ceremony is the way customer behaviors and expectations are being reshaped by the broader digital ecosystem. Consumers, especially those in their 20s and 30s, are increasingly comfortable with dominant digital platforms like Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon (GAFA) mediating their every online interaction.

It is not hard to imagine this extending to banks in the near future.

As attendees at the awards ceremony make clear, the industry is aware of this trend and is taking steps to get out in front of it. Some prize providing an “omnichannel experience” that offers consistent branding and services whether the customer is in the branch or on a smartphone. Others are spreading into social media, so users can interact with their bank or even execute transactions on Facebook. All of them are seeking a deeper understanding of consumer behavior and tastes to better serve their customers.

The first fruits of these initiatives showed up in the 2016 awards. Products like CaixaBank’s Mi imaginBankWidiba’s Widiba2020, and DBS Bank India’s digibank represent industry-leading attempts to apply GAFA-like innovation.

Yet the industry still has progress to make in this regard. Accenture research provides useful insights for banks looking to unlock GAFA-style new ideas.

The 2017 Efma-Accenture Distribution and Marketing Awards will also reveal what new ideas and initiatives the industry is using in this area. To learn about attending or applying for this year’s awards, head here.

And be sure to come back, when I’ll look at another industry trend linked to the awards.

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