Financial services are intangible, which makes them complex. Customers often have a high degree of risk and worry when buying a financial service—understandably so, because they don’t know what they’ll get until they spend their money and start to experience the service. They need something more tangible to help them justify their decision and ensure they won’t feel buyer’s remorse, and it’s therefore critical to communicate trust.
ABN AMRO, the third largest bank in the Netherlands, chose us to help make their services clearer and more attractive for customers, because of our long-term understanding of their brand and our years of experience in the financial industry (such as Wirecard) and creating brand experiences.
Storytelling is one of the service design tools that can help visualize a customer’s experience and build trust to win their confidence and engage with them early on in the process (like we’re also doing for Google, explaining the new DDA Adwords / Doubleclick features). That’s why we previously developed a style for icons, infographics and animations in close collaboration with animation agency in60seconds. The foundation for the style was ABN AMRO’s existing communication style, which is clear, simple and visual. We also created storytelling principles to be used across different media, including print, web, mobile and TV.
Now, based on new user experiences, we updated the infographic and animation style using the newest technical possibilities, creating more detailed expressions and smoother and more fluid animations.
We created two different forms of visual storytelling:
- Animated interactive infographics (online soon): using icons, illustrations (to a limited extent), key words and simple movements, animations can be produced relatively fast.
- Character animations: this more extensive animation style tells a compact story with illustrated characters in stylized environments.
To inspire internal clients and help tell the different stories and services in an effective way, we made the icons available in a digital library and developed a playbook based on the customer-centric principles: inform, inspire, and influence. And to make it even easier and cost-effective for different designers and producers to use the animations, an innovative tool has been developed to make stories on their own while maintaining the overall visual style, which includes a few standard characters and prefab animation clips of common actions.
The tools are now in place and being used. The next step is to further optimize the infographics and animations to create and ensure one overall service experience across multiple channels and touchpoints.