RBC enjoys a worldwide reputation within retail banking for its class-leading rewards and loyalty programme, and is a past winner of RBI’s own award for best loyalty programme, writes Douglas Blakey

And now the bank has rolled out RBC Vantage, taking its marketing proposition to a new level.

Now more than ever, consumers are using the lessons they have learned from the pandemic to evaluate changes they might make to different aspects of their lives. For many, this includes taking a closer look at their daily finances and banking behaviours.

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) knows that as the everyday banking needs and preferences of its clients evolve, it must continue to adapt its offering.

Prior to the pandemic, RBC began a journey to transform the way it approaches the client relationship, as well as attracting and retaining clients within the competitive Canadian market.

In April 2021, the bank launched RBC Vantage. As Sean Amato-Gauci, executive vice-president of cards, payments and banking at RBC, tells RBI, the bank has taken the best of what it does and innovated its offering to deliver more cumulative value than ever before, as well as insights and tools to help clients make critical financial decisions and confidently manage their money.

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The motivation to reinvent everyday banking

Clients told RBC they wanted more value from the things they do every day, and to be rewarded for their banking relationship, particularly as it grows with the bank. They also want help building confidence in managing their finances and, most importantly, they want RBC to earn their trust by looking out for their best interests and having their backs.“When we piloted RBC Vantage, advisors and clients clearly told us the new banking experience was excellent,” says Amato-Gauci. “The new interactive tools and differentiated value of RBC Vantage really resonated.”As the largest source of new clients for RBC and a key driver in keeping clients engaged, personal banking continues to be extremely important to the bank. In fact, 75% of clients begin their RBC relationship with an everyday banking need, and more than 75% of small business, mortgage and investing clients start out as personal deposit clients.

“With RBC Vantage, we’re providing a comprehensive everyday banking value proposition that delivers tangible benefits and more savings simply for being an RBC banking client. Ultimately, we want to give our clients a banking experience that provides more value, every single day,” Amato-Gauci notes.

Delivering More Value to Clients, Every Day

One of the innovations launched under RBC Vantage is the new Value Program, designed to recognise and reward Canadians for choosing RBC, and expanding RBC’s market leading reciprocity construct that provides discounts and free banking based on the client’s depth of relationship.In addition, eligible clients can now earn RBC Rewards points when they shop with their debit card. This makes it easier for all clients to reach their rewards goals sooner, and earn rewards points on both credit and debit purchases.Clients earn more rewards and savings when they access offers from top Canadian brands. A good example of this is RBC’s longstanding partnership with Petro-Canada. Since first partnering in 2017, RBC and Petro-Canada have helped clients realise more than C$75m ($59m) in fuel savings. And earlier this year, RBC teamed up with Rexall, a leading drugstore operator in Canada, to provide clients with value and savings on health and wellness products.

There is also a simplified account lineup focusing on the features that many Canadians look for, including unlimited transactions and savings on ATM fees. And now it is easier than ever to open an account remotely. Launched in September 2020, the digital tool leverages ID verification technology to allow clients to easily and securely open an account in-branch or virtually.

Empowering Canadians with Innovative Digital Tools 

More broadly, from the moment clients join RBC, the bank is committed to ensuring they have the right support, advice and products, including new interactive tools to provide personalised advice.“Whether clients are opening an account with us for the first time or are looking to see the impact of their money decisions on their financial future, we are empowering every one of them with personalised insights and expert advice,” says Amato-Gauci.New and existing clients will continue to have access to RBC’s suite of market-leading NOMI capabilities that leverage artificial intelligence to help them save, budget and manage their money.

While NOMI helps clients with managing their day-to-day finances, RBC knows there are times when clients want the expertise of an advisor. MyAdvisor provides access to a digital platform with human advice when clients need it.

Through MyAdvisor, clients can create personalised plans and connect with an RBC advisor in their community, via live video, phone or in-person at a branch. To date, 2.6 million Canadians have activated their personalised plans through MyAdvisor.

“This is only the beginning of the journey for RBC Vantage. We will continue to create simple, powerful ways to help clients save money, confidently manage their finances and enjoy more value for the things they do each day,” says Amato-Gauci.

RBC launches new brand platform in time for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

RBC has launched a new enterprise-wide brand platform: Ideas Happen Here, the first expression of which can be found in the bank’s marketing campaign for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.The brand platform asserts RBC’s abiding belief in the power of people and their ideas, and RBC’s pivotal role in harnessing them to help clients thrive and communities prosper.RBC’s new brand platform reflects the bank’s roster of differentiated initiatives, including RBC Training Ground, a programme that not only funds, but finds the next generation of Olympic athletes in Canada.

The RBC Training Ground idea contends that, in a country as vast as Canada, fuelling the Olympic talent pipeline requires more than an athlete funding program.

It also needs an unmatched talent identification system that is free, provides young Canadian athletes with access to National Sport Organisations, and often introduces them to sports they may have never considered otherwise.

Relentless pursuit of ideas, offerings that go beyond banking

“RBC’s new brand platform embodies our relentless pursuit of ideas that inspire us to challenge standards and introduce offerings that go beyond banking. It also reflects our commitment to making bold investments and establishing strategic partnerships, all while fostering an innovative culture,” says Neil McLaughlin, group head – personal and commercial banking at RBC.”This aligns with the aspirations we see brought to life in the incredible roster of RBC Olympians and RBC Training Ground athletes who we are proud and excited to cheer on during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.”