While banks are an important part of our economy, they’re not the only component of the financial sector. Also included are real estate firms, insurance companies, and investment firms.
Advertising for financial institutions can be challenging, as it’s always changing and very fast-paced. In fact, 51% of financial institutions report that their biggest challenge is keeping up with new digital marketing techniques. As technology evolves and customer habits change, the marketing strategies must change with them. This has been going on for as long as banks have existed.
Struggles specific to the financial sector
We asked our own Jeremy Hudgens, CRO and Director of Client Solutions, what some of the greatest obstacles are when servicing our financial clients, to which he responded, “I’d say that one of the greatest challenges we face with these clients is the red tape that we have to work around, and remaining transparent as we do. We like to work with these clients from the very get-go in order to stay abreast of what we can and can’t say.” Here are a few more of the challenges faced by marketers in the financial sector:
In financial marketing, one factor that must be considered is a lingering lack of trust. Only 30% of consumers trust their retirement plan provider. An imposing 5.6 million banking customers have indicated a desire to switch banks within the next year.
The reason for such a lack of trust dates back to the financial crisis of 2008 due to mismanagement within the banking community which, in turn, caused a great deal of mistrust within the financial sector.
The good news is that the financial institutions realized the negative effects this had on their ability to attract new customers, and began to take steps to provide excellent customer service to the customers, and restore their faith by focussing on their needs and concerns. Genius Monkey clients in the financial sector have seen an average of 12% increase in click through rates and assumed trust when speaking to the topic directly.
The Finance Industry Isn’t Big Into Being “Social”
When you walk into any financial institution, you probably expect to see a lot of serious-looking people walking around in suits, putting forth a funeral director-type personality with a stern face and a forced smile. That’s because those in the financial sector are known for being very serious-minded business people. This isn’t bad, but it’s not exactly an audience-slayer on social media.
Marketers in the financial sector know the importance of avoiding that stereotypical image, and lightening things up with a people-friendly approach. Of course, segmenting the audience is imperative … you don’t want to assume that the ad that will be attractive to a young family is going to work with the more senior crowd.
The marketer must appeal to the right crowd with the appropriate ad style. In fact, click through rates and conversion rates tend to be 22% less effective when they don’t take a lighthearted, yet precise approach to the correct audience.
PPC Is Expensive
Another major speed bump when it comes to pay-per-click (PPC) advertising in the finance industry is the cost. Nobody wants, or has time, to engage in a bidding war with a brand or ad agency with more experience, and who may be better established.
The key is continual multivariate analysis. Find out just what keywords are the most effective. Give these keywords their own campaign and get tough … aggressive. As always, put your emphasis on quality over quantity, which is sure to lessen the costs to the brand. At Genius Monkey, we measure attribution and track each path to conversion. We also:
- Facilitate the sign-up process
- Target ads that focus on users who are current bank customers
- Look for online and offline behavioral indicators of those trying to switch banks.
- Place ads in front of users interested in competitor sites offering similar services.
- Optimize towards the best-performing markets in real time, as the industry climate is ever-changing
As is demonstrated in utilizing these standards, Genius Monkey was able to help one of our recent financial customers increase their conversion rate from an average of 5 - 7% to 13 - 15%!
Money Can Be a “Forbidden” Topic
Back in the day, to discuss one’s financial status was considered awkward; somewhat secretive. Fortunately, money talk is no longer considered so taboo. However, there are certain areas in the world (the UK, for example) that are still not comfortable discussing their financial needs in a public fashion, like digital interaction. You don’t see them posting anything about money over social media like you might see here in the United States.
Companies in the financial sector must understand boundaries in which consumers are comfortable … especially when it comes to marketing. They must overcome the taboo part of money talk by finding a proper balance in which the content grabs the attention of the potential customers … without being too “intrusive.”
Cultivating confidence for long-term success
For the past decade, Genius Monkey has helped marketers in the financial sector find and reach targeted audiences across the full sales funnel with our programmatic technology. We stay informed of all the new advertising advancements so that we can boost financial institutions to the next level, building trust and confidence within their audience.