You may have the best financial products and services on offer, but:
- If you’re not using the right digital marketing tools to educate your customers about it, you might as well shut shop.
- If you’re not marketing your latest innovations, you won’t be able to attract new prospects/investors.
- If you’re not addressing your customer’s queries instantly and effectively, you won’t be able to retain your existing customer base.
To draw a simplistic comparison, marketing efforts in Finance is what audio and video features are to mobile phones today—absolutely necessary.
You can achieve all this by simply integrating the right mix of marketing tools to your existing financial blueprint. So, let’s look at some of the most disruptive marketing tips that are transforming the financial sector, one trend at a time:
5 Surprising Marketing Trends for the Financial Industry in 2020
1. Video Marketing for Smooth Onboarding
Ever heard of the term Experience-as-a-Service? It’s no longer a fancy slogan. Rather, it has emerged as a key differentiator that companies need to stand apart today. By extension, brands are looking to enhance the value they extend to customers through improved user experience, faster query resolution, personalized offerings and services, and seamless onboarding, among others.
The same rule applies in the Financial world as well. Not every customer is ‘financially-fluent’ in terms of:
- Understanding how your brand’s product/service works—especially if they’re a first-time user.
- Leveraging the modern on-demand services at their disposal.
- Getting a hang of the latest regulatory changes (if any).
In such a scenario, video marketing as a digital marketing tool can prove to be a game-changer. Let’s look at what the numbers tell us:
- Integrating videos on your landing page can boost conversions by 80%.
- A third of online activity is dedicated to viewing videos.
- Users typically spend 88% more time on websites that combine videos into their marketing.
So, now that we know why you should use videos, let’s look at the ‘how’ part of the equation. Here are a few ways in which you can ease your customer’s financial journey:
- Send video tutorials/demos to prospects for support in the financial sector.
- Create helpful “How-to” videos for investors on how they can use their products/services or create webinars for users like HSBC does in order to explain better cash flow management to users:
- Try something unique such as live streaming the technical analysis of the day as Saxo Bank does like a BOSS:
- Demonstrate your brand’s inspiring story by engaging in powerful story-telling by means of creating videos with crisp content such as WealthSimple does (as shown below):
- Develop emotional and relatable video testimonials and interviews such as Bank of America effectively demonstrates on its website:
- Promote the tutorials on each and every digital platform to reach a more diversified audience and ensure greater footfall for your website, social media pages, etc.
Key takeaway: If financial institutions wish to strike a more trusting and transparent chord with their users—particularly the millennials—video marketing is the way to go.
2. AI-Enabled Chatbots Working as Lead & Support Bots
Some say ‘time’ is money, and this adage rings true in the Finance sector now more than ever.
Think about it. When it comes to managing their finances, customers need instant results and real-time query resolution. This is where a chatbot can come in handy. Plus, chatbots have given way to a new form of banking called ‘conversational banking.’ This allows users to feel more connected and valued by the brand in question by ensuring a personalized experience at every stage of financial evolution.
In essence, there are two kinds of bots companies can leverage today:
- Lead bot: One of the most important functions in any Financial company is to qualify a lead for financial services. But the job doesn’t end there. The trick lies in connecting the prospect to the Marketing department for further personalized interactions – a speciality of ‘leadbot’ if you ask us. For example, say your company links your bot to a Facebook ad about the latest product on offer. When a user clicks on this ad, they have to fill in relevant details about their business, interest, needs, etc. If the user qualifies, the bot can send across the details to the sales team so that they can get in touch with the user later, and the purchase cycle can get kick-started.
- Support bot: Support bots, on the other hand, act as a virtual guide with the ability to handle all financial product-related queries the customers may have 24/7 and 365 days a year. Edelweiss Tokio Life Insurance makes use of this state-of-the-art feature to their advantage:
Key takeaway: Chatbots empower users to be self-sufficient by offering them a quick and efficient means to resolve queries, allow easy downloads of important documents, understand product features and benefits, etc. All in all, it makes the user’s life simpler and ensures they convert from a brand sceptic to a brand loyalist in the long run.
3. Voice Search-Enabled Virtual Assistants
If you think customers today are only using their smartphones for grocery shopping and finding dates, think again.
According to research, there are 3.3 billion mobile smartphone users across the globe today. That said, mobile payments are set to become the second-most preferred payment method after debit cards by 2022. Plus, additional data by Allied Market Research indicates that global mobile payment transactions will amount to £3.5 trillion by 2023.
And why not? Customers today want to perform financial operations and transactions in the comfort of their home, that too with greater ease. Enter: Voice-Search Enabled Virtual Assistants.
In more relatable terms, we’re talking about using innovative digital voice assistants such as Siri, Alexa, among others. In fact, Juniper Research claims that a staggering 8 billion digital voice assistants will be in use by 2023!
Let’s look at some examples of how market leaders are integrating this all-powerful technology to extend a hassle-free, responsive, and highly-customized experience to their customers:
- JP Morgan &Co is empowering customers by providing access to Research & Analytics Reports through voice-enabled chatbots.
- Capital One Financial Corp. was one of the first American banks to use Amazon Alexa services as their digital voice assistant.
- Global online payment player, PayPal uses digital assistant, Siri for extending a variety of customer-friendly services.
Key takeaway: The primary need for Financial institutions is to shift from a product mindset to a customer-centric one by giving them a ‘voice’ and being answerable to their queries and concerns (pun intended). Plus, these voice assistants can double up as analytical agents and extract the valuable inputs from within the system that helps align sales objectives with your business strategy – a win-win for all!
4. Omnichannel Marketing
When it comes to the Finance domain, users are ‘expecting’ the ability to do more when it comes to their financial management—that too at the click of a button.
Case in point: The Bank of America offers a seamless and user-friendly app and website allowing users to engage in a variety of services such as check depositing, appointment scheduling, etc.
In other news, Capital One launched an impressive “Banking Reimagined Tour” which saw the establishment of two Capital One Cafes that allowed people to recharge their bank accounts and devices while managing finances using simple digital tools and a refreshing cuppa Joe.
Or take the example of the Chase Bank which launched an ingenious online series on Twitter called Kneading Dough, where famous athletes were seen discussing their individualistic financial paths in a candid and more informal manner:
NASDAQ also uses omnichannel presence effectively by:
- Routinely using Facebook Live to inform its users about ongoing industry trends and address queries.
- Using Twitter to highlight its CSR initiatives and using Instagram to share motivational quotes by famous businessmen.
Clearly, this multi-faceted approach ensures that NASDAQ is always around, ensuring top-of-the-mind brand recall among new and old users alike.
Key takeaway: If financial companies wish to stay relevant, they need to integrate multiple platforms and facilitate smooth communication and cross-platform support. Only then will they be able to retain the customer base, while expanding their customer reach organically and sustainably.
5. AI-Enabled Analytics
Like every other industry domain, offering a customized and insight-driven customer experience can greatly benefit the Finance sector.
How, you ask? To start with, using AI offers key “Audience Insights” that can transform the way finance companies communicate and engage with the customers. Some of these valuable insights include:
- Understanding buyer persona and demographics.
- Identifying topics, conversations, and areas that most interest your user and drive your marketing campaigns For example, Western Union made efforts to gain insights into the emotional drivers behind their user’s money transfers. Accordingly, the marketing was tweaked accordingly giving rise to an interactive Facebook community:
- Integrating the power of segmenting customers (banking, saving, investing, retired, etc.) for tailoring bespoke marketing campaigns and reaching the right target audience.
- Describing the connection between customer intent, sentiment, and behavior to achieve ‘smart targeting’ and improving ROI on marketing spend.
- Addressing key customer concerns such as: “What are your user’s biggest pain points?,” “What are they currently looking for in a financial product?” For instance, Credit Suisse embraces AI analytics to understand consumer emotions and get ahead of user-related issues – from problematic stock purchases to unsatisfying customer service.
Key takeaway: AI-enabled real-time audience insights can lower advertising and marketing wastage for financial companies while allowing them to engage with customers in a more impactful, proactive, speedy, and accurate manner.
Wrapping Up: Connecting the Dots Between Marketing & Money
It goes without saying that marketing has emerged as an integral element for driving the right conversations that revolve around customer-centricity. Going digital no longer means offering customers the ability to download PDF forms. The true path to digital transformation for Financial companies involves going virtual, while still having your finger on the pulse (or in this case the mouse) of customer’s financial needs, wants, and aspirations.