The ultimate guide to digital marketing for the finance industry

The ultimate guide to digital marketing for the finance industry


As we enter 2018, it is concrete that digital marketing is the go-to form of marketing whether you are a small-scale start up or a well-established global brand. The power of the Internet has engulfed our day-to-day lives and all types of industries – from retail and travel to real estate and B2B – have joined the digital wave. However, there is a sector which is yet to keep up with the pace of the online space in India, and that is the age-old finance sector. Though many reputed banks and financial organizations are setting foot into the digital revolution by allotting a bulk of their marketing budgets to online branding, they are yet to completely leverage the power of going digital. Let’s take a look at the plethora of ways in which the finance sector can benefit from digital marketing and transform the outlook of the industry.

Benefits of leveraging digital marketing for the finance sector

To widen their clientele

With over 470 million active users on the Internet, India is the world’s second biggest online community. The figures are estimated to increase to a whopping 635 million by the end of 2021. These stunning statistics are proof that showcasing your products and services on digital platforms is a guaranteed way to reach a large percentage of the Indian population and convert them to loyal customers.

To evaluate their services

The dynamic medium of the Internet is a two-way street. Apart from providing financial sectors with an excellent platform to market their brand and feature their products, the online space also offers the benefit of evaluating your services and seeing what works. You will also have complete access to analytics and other such statistical data to track the performance of your digital campaigns.

To receive instant feedback

Customer satisfaction is of vital importance in the finance sector. Ensuring your consumers are happy and satisfied with your services is what drives the banking industry and digital platforms offer just that. From online posts to discussion forums, you will get a closer insight into what your customers are looking for in your products and how you can improvise your services for better consumer delight.

To cut down on marketing costs

There is no doubt that marketing your brand on the digital space costs much lesser that traditional advertising and branding. Apart from comparatively lesser costing, financial organisations will also get a better reach and can target their audience more effectively. Banks and other financial institutes can take complete advantage of this cost efficiency and free publicity.

How can financial organisations prepare themselves for the digital wave?

With such intense benefits, it is time all leading banks and institutes in the financial sector hop onto the digital bandwagon and sail strong along the digital wave. Here are few of the ways in which you can kickstart your online journey.

Digitise your brand

Banks and other organisations in the financial sector can leverage digital branding as their marketing strategy by working neck-and-neck with a digital agency. These agencies, such as Social Beat, provide end-to-end digital solutions from social media posts that go viral to top-notch website content that will rank you in the first page of Google.

Create an engaging app

There are an estimated 300 million smartphone users in India and this statistic is expected to reach a mind-boggling 2.3 billion by the end of 2022. With such a large percentage of the Indian population relying on apps for their daily chores, it is time you dive into the digital space with a high-end app, designed to cater to every need of your customers.

Whether you are a leading bank or a financial data aggregator, investing in a good app is a guaranteed way to take your business to towering heights. In today’s day and age, people like to be on the move even while making financial plans or surfing the internet for research. Apart from merely searching for information, most money transfers and other financial transactions also happen over the phone. With a user-friendly app, all your services and programs will be available at the click of a button which will lead to higher lead conversions and, ultimately, customer satisfaction.

You can also explore the concept of Progressive web apps for your company. This phenomenon is one of the top digital marketing trends in 2018 and is guaranteed to change the outlook of your financial organisation.

Go social

Financial institutes can increase the exposure of the organization by tapping on the reach of social media marketing. India is leading the online community with 241 million active users on Facebook. This only means that a large number of potential customers are currently scrolling through their social feeds and there is a possibility that a lump sum of this audience is in the lookout of a reliable and reputed financial partner.  With relatable social media posts, financial organisations can easily use content to engage with their target audience and widen their consumer database. You can also track the performance of your posts through advanced social media analytics tools and strategize accordingly. For more insights, check out our blog on the Facebook marketing trends of 2017.

FundsIndia is India’s biggest online investment platform with over 1 million consumers. In one of their most recent Facebook campaigns, on investing in mutual funds, they targeted the women of India with a quirky creative and copy.

Get ranked

In today’s day and age, the first thing which pops up in a consumer’s mind while looking for a particular service or product is to perform a mobile search. If you are considering digital marketing for your financial organization, one of your first steps should be to ensure you rank on Google. Focusing on optimal search engine optimization will drive a higher traffic to your website which, in turn, will lead to higher lead conversions.

You can start by ensuring your organisation is featured on Google local listings to increase the footfall to your outlets. You can also get showcased on Google My Business listings to give potential customers a brief insight of your organisation. Apart from Google listings it is also a good idea to leverage the power of content marketing to get ranked. You can promote your services and packages with engaging blogs and other posts that have the potential to both rank on Google and go viral on social media. However, make sure you explore all content amplification strategies to promote your content. It is also vital to incorporate all the keywords and trending topics in your blog posts for better results.

Step up your ad game

Facebook and Google ads have taken the world of digital advertising by storm. From website conversion ads to carousel and lead ads, banks can opt for an array of advertising techniques to drive enquiries and quality leads. You can also market your brand with a creative combination of videos, images and copy to attract your target group. Facebook is the best bet when it comes to online advertising as you can opt for detailed targeting based on age, geographic location, content consumption, online behavior and many other such demographics. You can also target the users who have previously clicked on your ad or recently visited your website for leads of premium quality.

A Google ad is the other “non-social” type of ad financial organisations can invest in to widen their clientele. These ads show up in Google when potential customers type in the relevant keywords in search of a renowned banking institute.

Engage your audience with drip marketing

Email marketing is the most traditional and effective type of digital marketing. With the beginning of 2018, this trend has been upgraded with an improvised version of customized emails. Reaching out to your potential consumers with personalized emails featuring the various offers and packages provided by your organization is a guaranteed way of increasing lead conversions. For example, if a user has logged into your website and shown interest in your services by subscribing to your newsletter, you can nurture the lead with regular notifications and offers provided by your firm to attract them further. According to a recent survey, drip email marketing provides a 119% click-through rate on authentic emails.

Apart from lead nurturing, drip emailers are also effective triggers to close incomplete transactions. For example, if a user had clicked on one of your financial programs or was in the middle of a transaction but could not complete the task, your digital team can target them with follow-up emails as gentle reminders. The emails can be customized as per the demographics of the user, with an effective call-to-action to close the deal in a single click. Featured below is one of the creative used in a drip emailer for one of our top clients – Kotak Asset Management.

Leverage word-of-mouth marketing

Influencer marketing is one of the top digital marketing trends of 2017 and is expected to continue its reign in 2018. There is a personal element of trust and assurance when customers choose their financial partners based on the advice and suggestions of a commoner and that is exactly the type of branding influencer marketing has to offer. Influencers upload engaging posts and modest reviews in the form of blogs, videos and pictures which has the potential to instantly attract viewers and convert them to consumers.

Financial organisations and digital marketing – A case study

The potential of going social – Bank of Baroda

Bank of Baroda is one of the first public banking organizations to have resorted to digital marketing as their branding strategy. Their marketing team focused on creating a premium presence on the online space rather than giving plain emphasis on the number of followers. Each of their campaigns had a specific objective from promotional content to lead generation. One of their most commendable campaigns was that of “One in a leap”. In this campaign, the bank put up a post on Facebook asking their customers to tag the one person who is a role model in their lives. The post was put up on the 29th of February during the leap year of 2016. The hashtag #OneInALeap was trending for a good six hours along with the hot topic of the day – the Indian Union Budget 2016.

Powerful story telling – ICICI Bank

Being one of the leading banks in the nation, ICICI tapped the Indian female population with the #FundYourOwnGrowth campaign. The campaign focused on encouraging women to invest in themselves and not be tied down by the shackles of the society. Women around the subcontinent could enroll in the Fund Your Own Growth program and open a woman’s account to enjoy a plethora of irresistible offers and benefits. A lot of online traffic was driven to their website which showcased the program details, advantages of opening a woman’s account and a series of inspirational stories of real women and their struggles against poverty. Through this campaign, the bank took the angle of empowering women to sell a financial product. The campaign also included a 2-minute video ad featuring top Indian actress Konkana Sen Sharma which was splashed on all major digital video platforms, including Youtube.

The magic of Google ads – BijliPay

Apart from banks and leading monetary institutes, B2B organisations that cater to the technologies involved in the financial sector are also focusing on digital marketing as their go-to branding strategy. BijliPay, one of India’s top end-to-end providers of payment solutions, collaborated with Social Beat to up their digital game and gain quality leads from the online space.

When the Rs 1000 and Rs 500 notes were demonetized in the end of 2016, a lot of businesses realized the need to go digital in order to survive in the market. Understanding this demand, BijliPay used Google to advertise their mPOS devices (card swiping machines). The primary objective of the campaigns was to acquire more customers in the wake of Demonetisation. In order to achieve our targets, we performed AB testing for different landing pages and altered the copies of various search campaigns based on what was performing well. Our ground-breaking campaigns landed 3,569 lead conversions with a cost per conversion of just Rs 285.

With such astounding statistics and mind-boggling figures, there is no doubt that digital marketing will have a huge positive impact on the finance industry. It is time you leverage the power of digital and secure the future of your financial organisation.

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