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ASB Bank Rates Highest in Customer Service

ASB Bank Rates Highest in Customer Service: Nielsen
Westpac ranked highest on brand awareness
ASB and Westpac ranked as favourite banks

Auckland, March 7, 2007: ASB Bank emerges as a clear market leader in overall customer service with nearly three quarters (74%) of their customers rating it as excellent/very good, the latest Nielsen Consumer Finance Monitor reports. The National Bank and Kiwibank follow with 71 and 70 percent respectively.

The Nielsen Consumer Finance Monitor interviews 2,500 respondents each quarter to provide comprehensive measures of consumer financial behaviour covering all key financial products, services and relationships. All the major banks in New Zealand subscribe to the Nielsen Consumer Finance Monitor.

Westpac remains the most recalled bank brand in New Zealand followed by ANZ, however the gap between the two brands is shrinking. 65 percent of consumers mentioned Westpac and 64 percent ANZ. See Chart 1

ASB remains a clear frontrunner in terms of advertising awareness, with nearly one in two people (48%) recalling their ads in the past month. As a result of the Pigs campaign, BNZ has steadily increased advertising awareness over the last three quarters to come in second behind ASB with one in three people (34%) recalling BNZ ads.

The position for overall favourite bank/financial provider is a tie between ASB and Westpac, with both sitting on 16 percent. All other major banks remained steady, while Kiwibank has continued its upward trend, slowly closing the gap against the other major banks.

“Kiwibank is making gains against the major banks in a number of areas and has clearly made an impact on the retail banking industry”, said Ms Lindy Osborne, Director Financial Services, Nielsen. “Since their launch five years ago, the bank has captured a six percent market share of main bank customers”.

“They have gained significantly in areas such as recommendation [recommend to a friend] and consideration [how much business you would like to give to each bank] whereas all the larger banks appear to be holding steady or trending downwards.”

Consideration of a bank does not always translate to changing a financial provider, as only around six percent of people actually change their main bank each year.

Looking in further detail at the way services are provided by each bank, all major banks received a high rating from their customers on their branch service. BNZ ranked highest at 81 percent, closely followed by ASB and National (80% and 79% respectively).

ASB still rates the highest in telephone banking service (81%) but this has been gradually declining for the past two years. After a drop in early 2006, ANZ has bounced back to sit second overall with 79 percent of customers rating it very good or excellent.

National shows the most marked improvement in Internet Banking service, with levels reaching 78 percent very good or excellent. ASB rates highest in terms of Internet banking service levels (86%) whilst ANZ has gradually declined over the past two years, now down to 72 percent.

Chart 1

Bank Awareness:
Nielsen

About ACNielsen
ACNielsen, a division of the Nielsen Company, is the world's leading marketing information provider. Offering services in more than 100 countries, the unit provides measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics and consumer attitudes and behaviour. Clients rely on ACNielsen's market research, proprietary products, analytical tools and professional service to understand competitive performance, to uncover new opportunities and to raise the profitability of their marketing and sales campaigns. To learn more, visit www.acnielsen.com.

About The Nielsen Company
The Nielsen Company is a global information and media company with leading market positions and recognised brands in marketing information (ACNielsen), media information (Nielsen Media Research), business publications (Billboard, The Hollywood Reporter, Adweek), trade shows and the newspaper sector (Scarborough Research). The privately held company has more than 42,000 employees and is active in more than 100 countries, with headquarters in Haarlem, the Netherlands, and New York, USA. For more information, please visit, www.nielsen.com.


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