Customers love fintech companies that go the extra mile to help them manage their money better. They will go with a company that makes them understand their income and expenditure or uses AI to make real time recommendations. A fintech-customer relationship is likely to succeed if the usefulness of the product is compelling. This is why marketers need the 4 pillars for supporting their FinTech marketing campaigns:
- Customer-centricity – Make the customer’s viewpoint and ultimate wellbeing central to the marketing activities
- Lifecycle Marketing – Foresee the profile of the proposed product’s cycle and take advantage of projected opportunities from development, maturity, growth and decline
- Customer Retention – Get more value from an existing customer base by improving quality, pricing, competitiveness, customer support, speed
- Brand Authenticity – Connect with your market using “real” important ideas that resonate powerfully with people and boost your emotional score
All the pillars support each other and are interconnected. You cannot be successful at your marketing efforts if you lack in any of the four pillars. Authenticity comes at the end, as just having it without the others will lead you nowhere.
These four pillars are famous, familiar and followed in other business segments, but not in the FinTech space. The fintech mindset is like that of a traditional banking institution: “I am a bank with set rules and functions, if you like it work with me, great, otherwise find someone else because there is no one out there.”
That’s how traditional banks have been functioning giving their customers less options. Even if you like them, or you don’t, you don’t have a choice, it’s like going from one devil to another. They lack the four pillars in its perfect form, and that’s the opportunity for fintech organizations.
First Pillar: Customer-centricity
This term refers to doing business that focuses on creating a positive experience for the customer by maximizing service and/or product offerings and building relationships. Everything that they do, every decision that they make, every choice that they make, is based on what the customer wants.
If you’re not serving the customer, and customers are not happy using your product or service, then, what’s the point? You are actually supposed to protect the customers. The first and foremost objective of a marketing campaign is customer-centricity. Your business should be centered on keeping the customers viewpoint, their ultimate well being.
While profitability of a venture might be topmost in a client’s mind, you need to be able to inject in your marketing efforts some care – which should really be its core. Going the extra mile should be the core value of a brand. Help build experiences that time and time again show you understand the importance of customer centricity.
Second Pillar: Lifecycle Marketing
Demand is already there but how do you draw them in by marketing? You need to create fintech marketing materials for each stage of the customer journey. Each piece should provide relevant information that educates. How long this takes depends on the product’s complexity, its degree of newness, its fit into consumer needs, and the presence of competitive substitutes of one form or another.
How are you going to touch base with your users from start to finish, not just the first need that you capture them for as a primary product, but the product backends that you can build, which caters to all their needs, so that they are happy with you? It doesn’t mean that you need to become one of those giants, doing everything – that is definitely not the point.
So, to encourage customers to leave behind the traditional products and services they’re used to, fintech companies must create alternatives that are easier to use and access. The user experience and customer journey must be better than those provided by traditional financial institutions. Marketing is the core and the heart of the business. Without marketing, no business is going to succeed.
Third Pillar: Customer Retention
Nowadays, there is so much competition and so many unique ways of delivering things that a consumer can compare and go elsewhere. Why would a customer remain with you? How are you quantitatively better? How are you competing in every way, not just in service, pricing, or the product. If you’re not competitive enough, they’re going to find someone else.
According to KPMG, 88% of CEOs are concerned about customer loyalty, realizing that mastery of the customer agenda is essential.You can always have one thing that’s primary that keeps the customer with you, and you can choose what that is. The major challenge is to find a good primary one, and also to make sure you don’t fall behind in other places.
You need not be the best in those other places, but you cannot be the worst. You cannot have one thing great and everything else poor. Then it’s like a broken ship. You can have one thing great, other things good, and that’s a good business. That is what we need to strive for and that’ll help you with the customer retention part.
Fourth Pillar: Brand Authenticity
Due to the flood of unwanted ads, consumers are using ad blockers, and anti-spam solutions to filter non-genuine messages. How can you as a marketer rise above the noise and be considered as authentic? You need to develop genuine messages and ideas that resonate more powerfully with people. Real important ideas help to boost your emotional marketing efforts.
Your brand will stand out from the crowd if you develop a connection with customers. You can make them see “what’s behind the curtains” through a video of actual users using the product. Make them feel a part of the company’s direction by showing a face they can relate to, a way to chat and be heard. Reaching out on social media makes them feel they know you.
Even if you’re to lose a customer because you provide an option for people to exit or work cross platform with other competitors, you also have something to gain. People would work with you more, because they know their risk is lower with you. People like to feel they have options and your best bet is setting them free to choose.
FinTech companies represent a threat to the incumbent financial services providers, but an expert marketer can help overcome the customer inertia that exists with their providers. Understanding customer perceptions and needs will be an important factor to success and help develop a long term, sustainable fintech-customer relationship.
Every marketing campaign must have a follow through. During the market development stage, the marketer has helped sell the product, and retailers and distributors have been reduced largely to being merchandise-displayers and order-takers. In the case of branded products, the marketer must now, more than ever, communicate directly with the customer.
The more you make your customers’ life easier, the more you will have peace, because people would like to stick with you longer, helping with the customer retention. All the above are pretty much interconnected, and intertwined. The brand authenticity comes at the end, as just having it without others will lead you nowhere. You need all pillars inline.
Thus we see the truth in what Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos has observed about serving the customers first-hand:
Our philosophy has been that most of the money we might ordinarily have spent on advertising should be invested in customer service, so that our customers will do the marketing for us through word of mouth.
If you have just the brand authenticity, it’s a short term path. But if you have the other three foundations right, then it makes sense. Then, the brand authenticity plays to your advantage.