Invest in Success: How Finance Companies Can Achieve Impactful Marketing ROI

What’s the first word that comes to mind when we say finance? How about lively, fun, or dynamic? Didn’t think so. The finance industry is often associated with stressed-out men in suits, hunched over reams of crumpled paper. But as we’ve explored over the past few weeks, financial marketing can be far from boring. 

Whether seducing account-holders with cheap concerts or keeping them close with environmental sustainability, modern finance firms are finally moving away from the stodgy old stereotypes.

To win—and keep—audiences, you can’t just be there at the start or end of a customer journey. In a dynamic market stacked with h competitive startups and fintech apps, contemporary finance firms have to hold clients’ hands the whole way through. 

From the initial approach, to providing value over time, to weaving your message through everything you do—why not start thinking about making your financial copy human?

Lesson One: Connect With Audiences 

Building finance audiences  doesn’t just mean offering cheaper loans or faster credit—it means integrating yourself into customers’ lives in exciting ways.

In our blog post on the topic, we explored how Citi Bank offers customers entry and preferred seating to major events like concerts and sports games. We also examined how Deloitte gathers useful data on some of the most pressing challenges of our age, from cybersecurity to digital transformation.

The point, through all this, is to develop personal connections with your audiences. As we put it: “Stacked with competition, finance brands have to determine the true driver behind customer loyalty.Find the spark that incites customer excitement and build an experience around it.” 

Lesson Two: Strive For Repeatability 

You might imagine that satisfying finance customers is just a matter of raw numbers—keeping balances in the black and red flags at bay. In truth, the most dynamic firms are constantly building relationships, always looking for new ways to advance their brand.

In our deep dive on how it’s done, we highlighted Bank of the West’s pledge to donate 1% of their net revenue from some accounts to Protect our Winters, a nonprofit that fights climate change. LendingFront, a MarketSmiths client, does a great job of retaining engagement by constantly updating their website with thoughtful blog posts. 

As our team explained, showing up for your audience on a regular basis and consistently delivering your message in fresh ways can “draw in an ever-wider community of leads.”

MarketSmiths Case Study:

A rapidly expanding insurance firm, Provence needed a revamped website that reflected its growing stature. Unfortunately, its existing copy missed the mark—only appealing to prospective policyholders, not independent agencies that may have wanted to merge with Provence. But through in-depth interviews, MarketSmiths soon put things right. Provence’s new website played up its strengths and appealed to the dual audiences central to its business plan, giving Provence pride of place in a crowded market. 

Read the full case study >

Lesson Three: Make Branding Your Business

The fundamental mission of all marketing is to infuse everything you do with your brand message. In our post on the topic, we reconsidered some of the finance brands we covered in previous weeks—but this time broadened our scope to encompass their whole business. 

LendingFront, after all, might have a nifty blog, but it also carries this urgent, optimistic tone to distant corners of its website. All this “elevates their marketing message beyond the practical,” we wrote, and makes working with them “an almost moral imperative.”

Our reflections on Citi Bank offered different conclusions. Though we praised them yet again for their exciting and vibrant entertainment offerings, we also argued that they didn’t go far enough. There’s little on their corporate website linking to Justin Bieber or the Mets—and as we’ve shown, going all in on your messaging can bring measurable results. 

Conclusion

None of that’s to say that understanding your audience or promoting repeatability aren’t fundamental pillars of the finance branding game. It’s just that they can’t be done in isolation. 

Just as finance has expanded into a behemoth encompassing everything from personal trading to loans, financial marketers must be willing to look beyond the ordinary—and integrate thoughtful branding into everything they do. 

Want buoyant financial copy that always keeps you in the black? Our team of (off) Wall Street experts can do just that—and always promise a return on your investment. 

Andrea is originally from London, and came to New York after a stint in journalism. He loves everything to do with writing—as well as obscure language facts, decent wine, and chocolate cake.

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