Argenta Launches Human-powered Conversational Banking Experience in Partnership with Sparkcentral & Smooch

Argenta announced the launch of a conversational banking experience within its successful mobile banking app. Powered by messaging customer service platform Sparkcentral and omnichannel messaging specialists Smooch, the new feature allows Argenta customers to engage in a continuous conversation thread – much like they would using WhatsApp with their friends – with trained Argenta staff at any time.

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Rather than giving their customers an automated bot experience, Argenta intentionally designed the experience to be human-first. Once engaged, customers can get assistance with payments or charges, receive advice on savings or investments, information about the latest products, etc, all within a fully secure environment and without having to leave the app.

With the messaging experience being a single, continuous thread, all previous customer chat history is retained, the conversation never gets abandoned, and customers can start and stop the conversation as they wish, which significantly improves the user experience compared to traditional live chat solutions.

Argenta CIDO Geert Van Hove said of the launch, “Personal, continuous, messaging is how a significant number of people communicate with friends and family – yet not currently with businesses, which we aim to change and spearhead for our industry. It’s a simple and intuitive way to connect. Argenta’s core values when it comes to our customers are focused very clearly on providing simplicity and accessibility. Giving our customers the ability to engage with real people, the highly trained members of our team support those values completely. Effectively, we’ve embedded a personal teller experience inside every one of our customers’ mobile phones.”

With a clear ‘mobile first’ and now ‘messaging first’ focus, Argenta’s consumer app already handles more customer transactions than any other channel – including via branches and online – especially with its younger client-base.

Enlisting Industry Specialists to Deal with Integration Complexity

Securely facilitating real-time, in-app conversations which contain sensitive financial data is technically challenging and requires a complex integration. For this, Argenta enlisted the expertise of customer service platform Sparkcentral and omnichannel messaging specialists Smooch.

While Smooch’s platform allowed Argenta to embed a secure, modern conversation widget into its banking app and securely transmit conversational data in real-time, Sparkcentral technology allows its agents to engage with customers at scale using their agent desktop and Automated Messaging Distribution platform (AMD) that is optimized for continuous, single thread, messaging.

“We have invested heavily in our digital platforms over the past year as we see significant value in these channels to deliver excellent customer experiences going forward. Part of our innovation strategy is in selecting leading technology partners such as Smooch and Sparkcentral, able to expertly assist us in delivering seamless and personalized customer experiences at scale,” Geert Van Hove added.

About Argenta

Argenta Bank- en Verzekeringsgroep nv is a bank and insurance company for families, active in Belgium and the Netherlands with 1.65 million customers. Banking activities are provided by Argenta Spaarbank and insurance activities by Argenta Assuranties.
For more information, visit www.argenta.eu

About Smooch

Smooch is an omnichannel conversation platform that connects any business software to all the world’s messaging channels. The company raised a $7.6 million seed round in 2016 and powers customer messaging for global CX leaders including Oracle, Zendesk, Lithium, Sparkcentral, Clarabridge, Four Seasons, Uber, and Betterment. Smooch is based in Montreal and is privately held.
For more information, visit www.smooch.io

About Sparkcentral

Based in San Francisco, California, and Hasselt, Belgium, Sparkcentral is a messaging customer service platform company with a mission to change the way customer service is delivered around the world. 1.5 billion people around the globe send tens of billions of messages on WhatsApp alone – per day. Yet very few of those messages go to businesses. Sparkcentral aims to change that. The company wants to spark a movement to connect businesses with customers through messaging, whether through social media or private messaging channels such as WhatsApp, Messenger, SMS text, live chat, or any other digital messaging means. Leading brands around the world rely on Sparkcentral’s Messaging Customer Service platform, including Netflix, Slack, citizenM, Goodbaby, KBC Bank, and Argenta Bank. Learn more at www.sparkcentral.com.