All businesses are being badly affected by the pandemic and the financial services market is no different. The term ‘business as usual’ has not been appropriate since the beginning of 2020. To survive, the industry needs to become much more digital savvy, using new ways of marketing to attract new customers whilst improving relationships with existing ones.
Digital marketing and financial services
However, the financial services industry is heavily regulated and this applies to everything it does, including advertising and marketing.
Not a step can be taken or a word written unless it is fully compliant.
Apply this concept to digital marketing and you can see that it has to be tackled very carefully.
No matter the size of your business, your role is to protect and extend your finance branding whilst looking after customers. A professional web agency can help you to do this in ways that are compliant and which conform with regulations.
There are several ways of doing this:
Focus on communication –
not only with clients but with employees too. Use your website to inform clients of how Covid is affecting the business and how they should get in touch with you whilst the main office is operating on a skeleton staff. Extend this communication strategy to employees, being sensitive to individual situations whilst putting in place some working rules.
Furloughed staff may be spread all over the country, working from home bases, but this doesn’t mean that communication has to fall apart. Pay attention to email, phone, messaging and even video conferencing. When each member of staff is kept in the loop then customers aren’t left scrabbling around in the dark when they make contact.
Make sure that everyone is sharing the same CRM database and that customer information is added to the system in real-time. This prevents clients from having to repeat themselves when they get in touch.
Tackle marketing head on –
don’t wait until problems start to occur. Be proactive. Maybe the products you were promoting are no longer so relevant because Covid has changed what customers are looking for. Put yourself in their shoes and focus on promotions that will grab attention.
Take a step back, re-evaluate and look at what suits the current pandemic.
Concentrate on ways in which you can boost your ROI whilst catering to customer needs. If you had any non-digital marketing events planned, cancel them.
Focus on getting your customers to use online banking or apply for products online by using the digital tools offered by you. With people moving out of the cities, banks, property brokers and lenders may want to re-look at their mortgage products.
Look at ways in which you can help customers who may be struggling. This may be by extending overdrafts or removing interest from overdrawn accounts for a set period.
This will get clients on your side, illustrating that you care. Keep them on your side long after the pandemic is over with things like this:
- Payment deferrals (skip a payment)
- Waiving minimum balances
- Eradicating transaction fees/monthly service fees
Make it easy for customers to talk to you, whether it is by phone, text, live chat or via private messaging in social media.
The important thing to do now is to use digital marketing provided by a financial services web design agency to gain the trust of your clients. Help them to deal with the current economic climate, understanding their worries and showing how you as experts can make things better.
Financial website design and SEO
Never has web design for finance been so important. Refresh the news on your site daily, promoting products and services that match current consumer needs.
Talk to your website agency about web design for financial services, creating a personalised ‘login’ page for each client.
This will not only hold their personal data but also promote personalised offers. Held on the website provider’s server, the site will be secure and encrypted for additional safety.
Attention also needs to be paid to SEO. Search terms that were suitable before will have changed because people are looking for different things.
If you don’t control SEO in-house, talk to your website developer. They will be able to help you by carrying out in-depth research and identifying what your new SEO approach should be.
If you have blogs and articles on your website, make them relevant to the current economic climate by updating keywords.
Support clients by using blogs to tell them about products and services that can help during these difficult times.
Use digital marketing to increase customer numbers
Now is the ideal time to use digital marketing to increase customer numbers.
Simultaneously, you must look after the customers you already have, showing the business’s human side and that the company understands their concerns due to Covid.
If you didn’t use digital marketing in the past, now is the time to get a handle on it. With more people trapped indoors and even working from home, traditional marketing is no longer going to be so powerful.
Financial service businesses that continue to pump money into it are going to see disappointing results.
The Coronavirus has forced people to embrace the digital side of life. Once the virus is under control, likely, life will never be the same again with the road out of lockdown continuing down the digital path.
As well as making good use of social media and emails, your customer service team need to be on their toes. The amount of calls from consumers is going to rocket so your telephone lines or online support needs to be able to deal with this. If you don’t have a live chat facility on your website, now is the time to talk to your web agency about getting one.
Because of the pandemic, the role of the financial advisor has changed. If you had one view of your ideal customer before, this will have changed, as will the customer persona.
Only by making good use of digital marketing and website design services can you help customers navigate the current Coronavirus wave.
Look after them and they will remember you when things return to some form of normal going forward.