Marketing is in a constant state of disruption as new channels, tools, and technologies enter the market. This is even more crucial for financial organizations, who must market in ways that build trust, creating meaningful connections with consumers rather than simply pushing products at them. As a result, financial marketing trends evolve to address challenges in marketing of financial services and tend to reflect new ways to improve communication, add convenience, and connect on an individual level.
These 7 financial marketing trends in 2019 cover the basics of what you should be paying attention to now. However, these trends will continue to change and evolve as new technologies continue to emerge.
1. Machine Learning
Machine learning enables automated marketing of financial services for both prospects and existing customers. For prospects, machine learning allows you to use data you can collect from social media, browsers, or even what’s shared during initial sign-ups to create custom marketing campaigns, products, and solutions for that individual.
For example, data-driven marketing allows you to collect information based on searches the prospect made to find your site, what they clicked on the site, and use that to predict what to show or highlight to guide the prospect further. Someone looking up a specific service could then be directed to that service and to more information on it, rather than having to wade through the often-vast complexity of a banking website.
This same type of machine-driven learning applies to tracking, as well as cross-channel marketing. Individuals leaving one platform and moving to another can be greeted with more information based on where they came from, creating a more seamless and intuitive experience.
2. Mobile Marketing
Mobile marketing is undoubtedly growing, but utilizing it is quickly becoming a trend you cannot ignore. This applies to mobile marketing in the form of applications and mobile-friendly websites, but also geo-location, in-app notifications and rewards, and support for tools like voice search.
For example, big banks like JP Morgan are creating Alexa-tools, enabling customers to ask questions about their finances and marketing right in Alexa. Geolocation allows banks to collect data based on most-used branches, locations where money is most-often spent, and eventually use automation to predict those locations.
This technology can be (and often is) used for fraud reduction but can also be used to push personalized local offers. Of course, you do want to ensure opt-ins before utilizing this type of information, as some customers find location tracking to be invasive.
Chatbots in financial services are becoming more valuable as they tie into other technologies such as RPA and big data, allowing banks to program automation to add customer value. Here, a good chatbot can function as a 24/7 customer assistant, helping customers with questions, opening accounts, checking account balance, and otherwise managing their account. When questions become too complex or require human management or aid, chatbots can simply transfer the individual to a human assistant, seamlessly functioning as Line 1 customer service.
This naturally reduces the cost of customer service for the bank, it also offers convenience for most customers – providing the chatbot is a high-quality one. Why? Chatbots are available 24/7, reducing the need to wait for customer service to be online, reducing the need to call, and improving customer’s ability to quickly get information with very little effort involved.
4. Micro-Demographic Targeting
Micro-targeting is a growing trend across all areas of marketing but can add unique value to finance. With more in terms of data, financial organizations can create extremely powerful modular marketing campaigns, which are then automated and delivered based on specific consumer needs.
This kind of platform allows you to use an “If This Then That” approach to marketing, where prospects see specific information based on available data they have shared. While data on new prospects will, of course, be limited, campaigns can include retargeting, predictive analytics, and dynamic pricing to offer individual rates, quotes, and approval, before the individual ever becomes a customer.
5. Human Experience
Automation and machine learning are certainly on the rise, but neither reduce the need for a human experience. Modern customers expect their organizations to be human in the sense of offering personal and friendly service, connecting with them as individuals, and working to provide human contact as part of marketing. This may involve tactics such as assigning one or two support representatives per prospect so that they always talk to the same person.
It may also involve creating live meetings and talking with potential customers one-on-one (when account volume is large enough to account for the cost). It can also mean working to curate a marketing-team mindset of being as friendly, helpful, and human-driven as possible. Ultimately, when mapping out the customer experience in banking or any other financial organization, human contact cannot be left out.
6. Customer Outreach
Customer outreach is quickly growing as one of the most utilized financial marketing trends because it allows financial organizations to reach marketing goals of brand awareness while benefiting the community at large. Customer outreach can include simple workshops, one-on-one sessions, long-term financial literacy courses at schools, and much more. However, it does allow you to literally reach out to the community, connect with them in a direct way, and offer something in return.
Here, your goal should be to fill a need or solve a problem, typically without pushing your products or services. Customer awareness and trust are often enough of a payoff. However, you can follow up sessions with enrollment to learn more, discounts for consumers who took a session should they choose to sign up for an account (related to the session) and offer specific help in getting new customers to actualize what they learned. This will vary a great deal depending on the direction you take for customer outreach but can pay off a great deal.
Personalization ties into nearly every modern marketing trend, with consumers demanding more individual experiences, more personalized products, and more human connection. While this doesn’t mean you have to create individual banking packages for each customer, it does mean that products, services, pages, and customer support should be tailored to the individual. Here, machine learning and automation can be extremely valuable in making it possible without exponentially increasing cost.
Personalized marketing includes offering dynamic quotes and pre-approval, taking the individual financial situation into account when creating accounts and offering rates, and treating individuals like the people they are. This will involve most of the trends in 2019, as most tie into personalization a great deal.
Modern marketing is often about connecting with people, offering more specific products and services, and building trust. 2019’s financial marketing trends all play into this, as most relate to increasing the relevance, value, and specificity of marketing efforts