If you’ve found yourself thinking that consumer technology seems to be progressing more quickly by the day, it’s definitely not in your imagination.
Technology is evolving at a near breakneck pace which in turn affects how consumers from all walks of life make their purchasing decisions.
As a result, businesses from nearly every industry have been hard at work updating and perfecting their digital marketing strategies to keep up.
However, companies specializing in financial services tend to lag behind in this regard while other industries power ahead.
If that sounds like your company, it’s officially time to rethink your approach before it’s too late.
Here’s a closer look at why digital marketing for financial services is such an important consideration today, as well as how you can help your company stay ahead of the curve.
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What can Digital Marketing for Financial Services do for Your Company?
As the prevalence of concepts like mobile technology and e-commerce grows, modern consumers’ everyday habits and preferences are changing.
People are choosing to handle more and more of their necessities online. They’re not just doing their shopping online or using the internet to stay in touch with their loved ones, either.
The more comfortable people become with working and functioning digitally and remotely, the more they trust the technology involved.
That said, many consumers now prefer to manage their finances and various accounts online.
They’re using social media to research new products and services that might meet their needs, too.
But some financial services providers are failing to make the most of these trends by:
- Being slow to embrace social media marketing and the value of maintaining a solid social media presence on major platforms.
- Underestimating just how quickly a good or bad word from a customer can go viral, as well as how many people it could reach.
- Not updating data management strategies to better accommodate information gathered from social media interactions, consumer website behavior, and similar sources.
- Failing to personalize what they offer and how they communicate with their customers thoroughly enough.
- Using potential assets like video marketing to interrupt would-be customers instead of to entertain or inform them.
- Not making the most of email marketing and communications to stay in touch with customers.
The power of crucial factors like online word-of-mouth, personalized customer outreach programs, and video marketing can no longer be overlooked if you’re serious about staying ahead of the competition.
Financial services firms that are successfully embracing these changes aren’t just tapping into new markets.
They’re better at meeting the expectations of their current clients and retaining their business, as well.
How is Digital Marketing Shaping the Financial Services Industry?
Most industries experience a bit of shake-up from time to time, but the finance industry has seen more disruption than most lately.
Not only are financial services providers scrambling to navigate a market affected by dramatic political and economic challenges, but competition is fiercer than ever.
Dynamic new startups and technologically astute innovators are also throwing their own hats into the finance ring.
They’re capturing large percentages of the collective revenue growth, so veteran financial services companies that are serious about staying on top have had to evolve in a hurry just to keep up.
Here’s a look at how current digital marketing standards are set to keep changing for the financial services industry.
Greater Focus on Consumer Expectations
The demand for consumer experiences that are available at all times and from anywhere is massive these days, and it’s not just limited to the streaming media industry, either.
People now expect this from nearly every service they use, and that includes the banking, payment, and finance management options they’ve chosen.
Watch for this trend to continue in the years to come. You’ll see its influence in slicker interfaces, faster service fulfillments, deeply personalized customer experiences, and more.
Increased Need for Personalized Engagement
The days when the average consumer only had a few financial services options to choose from are over.
Instead, companies across every industry are looking for ways to better cater to the average person’s rising expectation that services be “always-on”, personalized, and limitlessly available.
And with increasingly easy access to so many different choices, consumers are becoming less loyal, so businesses must work harder to retain their business.
This trend is driving a need to engage with customers on an aspirational level and win their trust by striking a solid balance between security and transparency.
However, this must be done while preserving the easy, seamless, innovative experience that customers expect.
7 Essential Digital Marketing Tips for Financial Services Providers
When you think of patient animals with long attention spans, you probably don’t picture a goldfish.
You might think of a human being, but you probably shouldn’t. That’s because the average goldfish has an attention span of nine seconds, which is actually one second longer than the average modern human’s.
What does that mean for you as a business owner?
It means you need to become an expert at not only standing out from the rest of the competition around you but quickly capturing a potential customer’s attention before they click away.
Better digital marketing for financial services is the key to doing this, so the sooner you get started, the better.
Here are some highly effective options:
1. Prioritize dynamic, engaging content
The saying “content is king” is still very accurate when it comes to attracting the interest of your target demographic.
A solid content marketing campaign isn’t just great for driving traffic, collecting leads, and converting customers, either.
It’s a great way to set your company apart from the rest as a proper industry authority — something especially beneficial for finance businesses.
However, the average finance article can be pretty dull and challenging for laypeople to digest, so creativity is the key to engaging content that yields results.
Develop a clear content strategy that serves your goals.
Strike a good balance between informative and straightforward, engaging and informative.
And don’t be afraid to outsource this job to professionals if you’re not sure how to proceed on your own.
2. Cultivate a solid social media presence
Saying that everyone who’s anyone is on social media nowadays isn’t the overstatement it might sound like.
Around 81 percent of Americans are active on social media and spend an average of 4-5 hours a day utilizing it in various aspects of their lives.
Yes, they’re using Facebook, Twitter, and similar profiles to stay in touch with loved ones and browse the latest memes, but that’s not all.
Modern consumers are increasingly turning to social media for help with their purchasing decisions.
They’re using it to research products, contact businesses, and follow brands they’re interested in.
Building an attractive profile, filling your feed with the right content, and interacting with customers via social media is one of the most powerful marketing strategies you can adopt right now.
3. Leverage the power of multimedia
While it’s true that excellent written content is still an essential part of any well-rounded digital marketing campaign, you don’t want to overlook multimedia.
Research shows that it’s actually a lot more engaging, convincing, and capable of capturing that 8-second attention span most people are working with.
Infographics are one great example of compelling visual content.
Quick-fire stats and fun, colorful graphics make them especially easy to absorb at a glance.
They’re also precisely the type of content people love to share, as nothing jazzes up a Facebook or Twitter feed quite like a good-looking graphic.
Then there’s video, a steadily emerging trend that’s been changing the marketing world for a while now and shows no signs of slowing down.
In fact, did you know that more than 80 percent of millennials watch videos as part of the process of making a purchase decision?
An on-target YouTube channel or similar option could be the key to capturing the attention of this ever-important demographic, especially when you keep in mind that so many financial businesses overlook video altogether.
4. Use personal stories to boost connection
Modern consumers expect more from the brands they trust their lives to than they once did.
Cold and impersonal doesn’t cut it anymore when it comes to getting through to existing and potential customers.
People want a personal connection with the businesses they buy from, and razor-sharp marketing materials aren’t enough to make that happen.
Instead, add engaging stories to the mix to drive engagement and build rapport.
Is there an interesting story behind your decision to start your company?
Tell it, and use it to help your customers connect with you.
Share informative or compelling finance stories and occasional hot takes on events related to your industry, as well.
In short, don’t be afraid to let your company’s human element shine through, as it’s a terrific way to set a finance company apart from the rest of the pack.
5. Encourage customer reviews
In the past, customer reviews were simply seen as something nice to have — helpful, but not necessarily essential.
This is no longer the case.
In fact, nearly all consumers — an incredible 98 percent — read reviews from other customers before pulling the trigger on a purchase decision they’re considering.
Reviews become even more important for financial companies, as people want to be extra sure of services they’ll be trusting with their money.
A glowing review from a happy, satisfied customer is priceless when it comes to digital marketing for financial services.
However, even negative reviews can be spun to an astute business owner’s advantage.
Think of them as an opportunity to show customers how responsive, caring, efficient, and accountable your company is.
Encourage your customers to share their experiences with your company online, and engage with everyone who makes the effort.
Thank happy customers for choosing you, and work to resolve the problems unhappy ones have to their satisfaction.
Word of mouth spreads like wildfire online, so do your best to make sure almost everyone has something good to say about your company.
6. Don’t forget about mobile compatibility
Although many people still log a good portion of their online time on laptops or desktop systems, those who only use computers to access the internet for buying purposes are in the minority now.
Most people do at least some of their purchase browsing and shopping via their smartphones, and 25 percent of all internet users only use their phones for that.
You can’t afford not to take that into consideration.
Make sure your company websites, blogs, and purchasing interfaces are optimized for mobile devices.
Think clean designs, lightning-quick load times, and intuitive navigation.
Revise your marketing strategies to better reach customers via mobile tech, as well.
Again, it may be worth bringing in a team of experts to do the job properly if you don’t already have someone capable on your team.
7. Personalize each customer experience
Modern consumers don’t just expect their services to offer instant, continuous access to what they need these days.
At this point, they’re also used to all their favorite apps and brand offerings tailoring their experience to fit their exact needs and interests.
Financial services providers could benefit from doing the same.
People are particular about how they handle and manage their money.
However, many financial services providers still aren’t efficiently leveraging data to customize the consumer experience.
A business that successfully does this to intuit and deliver what their target customer wants really stands to get ahead of the competition.
Personalizing your website to deliver information and options relevant to each visitor’s location is also a must.
Keep this in mind, especially when optimizing your site for mobile compatibility.
Today’s quickly evolving technology has consumers expecting (and asking for) more in every area of their lives.
They want to work, play, and enjoy their favorite pastimes on their own terms.
But they want to manage their money, pay their bills, and buy the things they need that way, too.
Service providers who can successfully cater to those needs and preferences have a significant edge over the competition, especially in the financial services sector.
Definitely go over your customer outreach plan and consider new ways to make effective digital marketing for financial services a more significant part of your plans.
But make sure you’re also prepared to collect and organize your valuable data so you can apply it in pursuit of your goals.
Our handy performance tracker can help you measure and simplify the effectiveness of your sales initiatives.
Keep track of important metrics like email open rates, website traffic, and more in one simple, user-friendly location.
Download it today to take the next step toward achieving your business goals!