It is no surprise that technology continues to change the way that consumers interact with the financial services sector. When 4 out of 10 Americans have not visited a bank in 6 months and 67% of millennials only use online banking, modern financial service companies need to reinvent themselves to stay competitive. These trends offer some insight into the ways your company can reach consumers in 2019.
Today, marketing is all about smaller interactions or touch points with consumers, seeing an advertisement at the top of a website, rather than large-scale touch points, visiting a bank. You want people to have multiple small touch points with your brand. Just hiring a PPC management agency to throw ads up isn’t enough. You need to go omnichannel. One of the biggest shifts in financial services in the last five years is online only banking systems where you can open an account via video chat, apply for a credit card through an app, and check your balance via SMS. Seeing your brand in multiple places for a few seconds is much more impactful than one large-scale interaction once a year. Therefore, financial institutions need to rely on long-term small personalized experiences, based on research, to engage with consumers.
Implementing blockchains as part of the infrastructure of financial institutions will be imperative. A blockchain is a list of records linked together that act as a secure, permanent ledger of interactions between two or more parties. This will become more important as hackers become more sophisticated and financial institutions seek to rebuild the trust of consumers.
Data Based Marketing
Financial institutions have years of historical data that can be used in predictive marketing programs to help tailor ads towards specific target groups. In marketing you want to create micro-moments, a term for when people look up something on their phone or computer, you want your company to provide the answer. To create this personalized experience for consumers, combining historical data with more sophisticated AI learning will assist with generating content and even be able to predict when and what people will search for. Some SEO services companies specialize in creating these moments. They can help you refine your ad campaigns based on the needs of your target groups so that the right people see your ads at the right time.
User Experience or UX design focuses on enhancing user satisfaction by improving simplicity and accessibility during interaction with the product. For instance, the majority of people who have smartphones use online banking and this is the only interaction people have with their bank. On the app the goal should be transparency, simplicity, and easy to access information. The app should take users directly to the information they need, be interactive, and when possible provide instant access to customer care.
It is imperative that your company has a strong online presence so that you can monitor online conversations about your brand. Customers today expect real-time responses from service providers, they want it now and on their terms. The reality is people trust their fellow consumers more than companies therefore if they are not satisfied with their experience they will often post online. However, by addressing these concerns directly by acknowledging mistakes and correcting in the future, you can mitigate damage. In addition, social listening can help you gather data to help develop content that resonates with your target audiences. Then use that data to become a reputable information source for your customers. Find clever ways to inform people about your services and products while offering finance tips, relevant industry updates, and investment advice.
Financial services will need to rely on demographic-based targeted campaigns to find and maintain customers. The success of companies moving forward will be determined by simple, informative, and consistent positive interactions that over time will build a trusting relationship with consumers. So monitoring the conversation surrounding your brand and addressing complaints will be important for maintaining brand loyalty. In the future, as technology becomes more complex, being true to your brand and building relationships with your customers will allow your company to thrive in 2019 and beyond.
Chris Hickman is the Founder and CEO at Adficient with 15 years of experience in search marketing and conversion optimization. Since 2006, he founded GetBackonGoogle.com, helping businesses and websites suspended in Adwords to Get Back on Google.