By Nandik Barbhaiya, Global Head of Marketing,FXTM
In a recent CMO survey, over half of the respondents from financial industries increased their marketing investment in 2017.
Financial marketers are realising the need to invest and innovate in order to remain relevant in a crowded sector. Industry professionals need to work across multiple departments, including UX and data analytics, to achieve success.
Nandik Barbhaiya, Global Head of Marketing, FXTM, shares his top tips for creating successful marketing strategies in the financial services industries (FSI).
- Develop clear concepts
It’s important to be clear from the onset how your marketing strategy can and should be used in your business. A content marketing strategy is only as strong as its execution, so be realistic with capacity and expectations. Outline exactly who will be responsible for what within the team so everyone understands their responsibilities from the beginning.
Financial industries are highly regulated and often under the spotlight, so it’s essential to undertake a risk assessment before you begin any new strategy. Once you’ve established a campaign idea, sit down with your team and discuss any possible ways the campaign could be misinterpreted.
Determine whether the risks outweigh the benefits of the campaign. It’s important to work toward removing any preventable risks and developing a contingency plan in case of any potential issues which may arise.
- Make it personal
Findings show content marketing personalisation leads to tangible ROI. Customer experience and insight professionals need to align their strategies with marketing teams to ensure specific targeting.
For example, if your customer data is telling you people who commute into London from Surrey are your most common customer, marketing can then consider geo-targeting ads, focused on mobile devices as one of your main commercial solutions.
Social media can provide an abundance of useful data on customer sentiment, interests and location, which will help to optimise campaign results and keep FSI companies informed on where to invest marketing spend.
Investing in relevant social listening tools will help marketing professionals become more customer-centric, which, in turn, will increase loyalty, trust and business revenue.
- Content is king
Targeting is only part of the solution. According to a Contently study, only 1 in 3 millennials have invested money in the stock market. Once you get in front of the right people, you need to ensure your content is compelling, trustworthy and prompts action.
Demonstrate the expertise and knowledge in your business through interesting and informative content, such as case studies, social media or online resources. The types of content you choose should also differ, depending on your target audience.
For instance, younger demographics might be more responsive to a social post, whereas oldercustomers might benefit from an advisory “how-to” article on your website.
Well-researched and thoughtfully written content should help your target audience, at no cost to them. Make sure you create content that is of interest to experts too. If you’re targeting analysts and entrepreneurs in the financial space, they will already have researched the basics and perhaps want some more complex articles to sink their teeth into.
It’s also crucial that you have specific calls to action. Urge your target audience to visit your website or subscribe to your newsletter. These options open the doors to building a relationship and acquiring a customer.
- Think to the future
According to Marketo, the FSI is still falling short in modernising marketing, as companies in the sector often have concerns around compliance in relation to digital marketing.
Introducing automated marketing tools which conform to regulations, greatly reduces concerns around privacy and compliance. Automation streamlines and measures tasks and work flows in one simple interface. Such systems can track the success rate of campaigns, which helps you filter out under performing content to improve response rates.
The FSI has also struggled to cope with the recent explosion of data from website behaviour, social media interactions and other digital channels, finding it hard to consolidate all this information to deliver content to the right person, at the right time.
Using data management platforms such as Single Customer View (SCV) can be beneficial, as they allow marketers to identify and understand individual customers. They can track across multiple channels and devices ultimately delivering more targeted and engaging messages.
- Stand out from the crowd
45 percent of financial services report their marketing is conducted on an “ad hoc” basis, so there’s room for improvement if businesses want to create strong marketing strategies that outperform competitors.
Complete a competitor analysis to discover what others are doing and find a gap in the market where you can stand out. Differentiation can mean everything, and nearly 90 percent of marketers say interactive content distinguishes them from their competitors.
By understanding this principle, more marketers are stepping up their static content to create offerings customers can truly engage with, like interactive maps or animated charts.
After all, marketers get the best results when their audience not only consumes and enjoys content but interacts with it too.