The world of finance is changing – and fast. This means that organisations need to adapt their strategies in order to keep up. The rise of Industry 4.0 brings a wave of new technology, such as automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI), and smart devices that go beyond just mobile. Clients are more connected and clued up than ever. From their financial services providers they now demand convenience, instant access to the services they need, excellent client care, and total transparency.
They want a better client experience, one where they feel engaged, valued and understood. These latest digital marketing trends show us exactly how things are evolving, and how brands need to gain a competitive edge in order to survive.
Client desire for omnichannel grows
These days, clients want to be able to connect with you in multiple ways. They want the convenience of social platforms, the quick click of the app, as well as the option to speak to a human operator on the phone. But it’s not just a matter of choice – it’s about being able to use the right channel at the right time, and being able to switch from one to the other seamlessly. This means they want Sally on social to update Fred in the call centre of exactly what’s been said.
The future of digital marketing for financial services is all about being connected. So what does this tell us? It tells us that clients don’t see brands as silos. However, in many financial organisations, silos are exactly how departments operate. To delight today’s client, it’s important for your digital marketing strategy to align with what’s happening across the entire business.
Data is the key for omnichannel engagement. If you want to create a better client experience through joined up channels, you need to adapt by deploying advanced analytics that shows you first, second and third party data. Data and analytics are a trend that financial institutions simply cannot ignore.
Personalisation in financial services
As the shift from product to client-centricity grows, the need for audience segmentation and personalised communication becomes more apparent. Digital channels with highly personalised content will be combined to bring in fast, measurable results, and micromarketing will drive the direction of larger campaigns.
This indicates just how important client experience is in financial services. The increasing number of new startups has disrupted the market, and now fierce competition poses a threat to established brands with traditional business models. There’s a huge emphasis on marketing ideas that can help organisations win and retain clients, and personalisation is one of them. The easiest way to build trust and credibility is by meeting your clients where they’re at, instead of making them work harder to get to you. Broad, impersonal offers that appeal to the masses simply won’t hook them in.
The use of personalised offers ensures clients feel that you are being helpful and genuine. But basic personalisation techniques won’t cut it either. Research by Pure360 shows that simple tricks (such as addressing people by their first name or sending birthday content) aren’t enough to engage. Pure360’s survey reveals that just 8% of consumers interviewed would take notice of an email with their name on, and just 7% would engage with a birthday email.
Mobile and finance go hand in hand
The inevitable is looming – based on stats from Finance UK, mobile banking will reach its tipping point and become mainstream by 2021. The banking industry lobby group also predicts further growth thereafter, with 71% of clients expected to use mobile apps for banking by 2024. In the same year, the amount of people who bank in branches is expected to drop by 55%.
This data not only makes banks reassess their footprint of physical locations, but it puts pressure on their marketing departments to connect with the digital audience. Financial services need to have a mobile-first marketing plan in order to deliver an efficient experience that answers the needs of today’s remote user.
Something we’ve seen with established banks is new plans in places to directly compete with fintech startups, who are pioneers of mobile technology. One of these banks is RBS, which is set to launch its own challenger brand to serve mobile-only clients. As the Internet of Things (IoT) gets bigger, digital marketing trends will evolve to include much more than just mobile marketing. Voice search will be paramount for hands-free virtual assistant devices and other smart technology.
Chatbots to provide 24/7 troubleshooting
The power of AI allows complex businesses to use chatbots to their advantage, creating another way of direct communication between client and brand at any time of day. This is one of the main benefits of chatbots – they never sleep. This means that it’s possible to answer simple queries, resolve issues and reduce client complaints even outside of office hours.
Things such as Facebook Messenger chatbots in banking and finance have grown so quickly. By using bots, companies can save time and money, and help to relieve the pressures on their human workforce. It’s all about providing convenience without the restrictions of traditional business hours.
But the application of AI technology doesn’t just confirm that we’re living in a world of convenience and instant connectivity and access. It also tells us that human interaction isn’t always necessary or desired, particularly by the millennial or Generation Z client. For the younger generations of clients who have grown up on social networks, this is where they expect to see most of their content.
Social media marketing will have a lot of significance as more and more users turn to their favourite platforms to engage with brands. Organisations that don’t have a social media marketing plan in place stand to lose out on a big demographic of people.
Looking to play catchup in an evolving industry?
We can offer our services at every stage, from top-level strategy and planning for a complete marketing overhaul to digital content marketing and social media marketing to get your brand future-ready. Get in touch with our Business Development Team on 0845 686 0055, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.