Financial Marketing Trends for 2014: What You Really Need to Know


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BlueSpire presented this financial trends webinar on Wednesday, Nov. 20. Our subject matter experts focused on the following points (among many) in the webinar:

• Content: Auditing your content across multiple channels and engagement that drives growth
• Branding and Design: Brand consistency as the “new black” and what’s new in design
• Multi-Channel Approaches: Making the shift to digital while still integrating print, responsive design pros and cons, email onboarding/triggering/drip campaigns, and latest recommendations on search and social

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Financial Marketing Trends for 2014: What You Really Need to Know

  1. 1. Financial Marketing Trends for 2014: What You Really Need to Know
  2. 2. Welcome Your Panel Jen Joly, Marketing & Communications Director, Financial Marketing Strategist Beth Miller, EVP/Innovation, Content Strategy and Client Engagement Grant Evans, Director of Digital Publishing Christian Twiste, Vice President/Interactive Services
  3. 3. Agenda: Trends That Should Drive Your Financial Brand in 2014 Brand and Design Authenticity, Transparency, Consistency & More Content Knowledge, Audits and Engagement Multi-channel Approach Integrating Print and the Digital World
  4. 4. Before We Dive In … What’s expected in the economy for 2014? The U.S. economy is expected to grow roughly 3% The unemployment rate will fall to roughly 6.6% Credit union savings balances are expected to grow 5% Loan balances are expected to rise more than 6% for banks and credit unions Bank business loans are expected to grow by more than 7% Bank charge-off rates are expected to drop to 2.2% SOURCES: Economic Projections of Federal Reserve Board Members and Federal Reserve Bank Presidents, September 2013 CUNA Economic Forecast as of September 2013 Economic Advisory Committee of the American Bankers Association, June 2013
  5. 5. Persistent Trend: Consumer as the Core
  6. 6. Brand and Design: Authenticity, Transparency and Consistency
  7. 7. Trend: Authenticity “I don’t tell my friends about your brand because I like your brand, rather because I like my friends.”
  8. 8. Know Thy Self Know who you are: Aspirational Unknown Mature
  9. 9. Trend: Authenticity
  10. 10. Trend: Transparency Guilt-free Consumption (GFC) Source:
  11. 11. Trend: Transparency “A new kind of consumption: one free from worry (or at least with less worry) about its [consumption’s] negative impact, yet that allows continued indulgence.” Source:
  12. 12. Transparency in Action SELF SOCIETY PLANET
  13. 13. Emotional Connections in Action
  14. 14. Trend: Brand Consistency Consistency is the new black. Why? With more and more channels, consistency is more important than ever Your audience is inundated every day!
  15. 15. Document
  16. 16. … and Evangelize Other Action Items Internal Employee goals New Employee Orientation Brand Training Brand Champion Program Brand Recognition Programs External Focus Defined plan to meet business and audience goals that is measurable
  17. 17. Brand Consistency Proof Points 100% 90% High Performing Banks and Credit Unions vs. Lower Performing Peers 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Design guidelines, brand New employees receive brand standards manual or style guide orientation/training Source: Financial Brand/Aite Group survey of 258 financial services executives (2/13) Ongoing brand training for employees
  18. 18. Consistency in Action
  19. 19. Consistency in Action
  20. 20. A brand is The sum of all characteristics and feelings, both real and perceived, that create an impression and make a promise.
  21. 21. Trend: Innovation 70 60 50 40 “Banking innovation’s gonna change more in the next 12 months than it has in the previous two decades.” - NCR VP Brian Bailey, who works with banks on branch transformation 30 20 10 0 “60% of banks today have an innovation strategy compared to just 37% in 2009,” says Haragopal Mangipudi, global head, Finacle. Sources: BAI Banking Strategies, “Innovation Focus on Mobile and Online” American Public Media, Marketplace, “Your bank teller will live inside an ATM”
  22. 22. Trend: Innovation in Action Pretail (pre-retail) “A mode of consumption that sees consumers treat crowdfunding platforms as the new shopping malls. Why? Because that’s where current customer demand for more innovative, exciting and unique products and services is being served better than anywhere else, by an army of entrepreneurs and start-ups.” Source:
  23. 23. Pretail in Action Pretail vs. Consumer Controlled Innovations
  24. 24. Trend: Flat Design and Grid Systems Flat design Minimalistic, simplistic Vibrant colors Geometric shapes Typically limited to two (2) sans serif fonts No embellishments: i.e. no shadows, bevels, gradients or textures Grid systems Single page design Transparency Locked headers Large Photos Content as visuals Focus on typography App style interfaces Single version (mobile and desktop) Retina Ready
  25. 25. Flat Design Then Now
  26. 26. Grid Systems and Info Graphics
  27. 27. Scrolling, Headers and More
  28. 28. Content 2014 Trends: Knowledge, Audits and Engagement
  29. 29. Trend: Knowing Your Audience “As the science of data analysis becomes more cost efficient and sophisticated and consumers generate more measurable data than ever, brands will increasingly be able to predict what a customer needs or wants— and tailor offers and communications very precisely.” Source: JWT Intelligence 10 Trends for 2013
  30. 30. Knowledge in Action: Customizing Your Message by Audience Message Map created by target audience and specific goal(s). Content process = Create, Curate and Influence
  31. 31. Trend: Shift to Strategic Content Percentage of B2C Marketers Who Have a Documented Content Strategy Content Marketing Usage by B2C Marketers Rose to 90% (from 86% the previous year) 60% surveyed expect their company’s content marketing budget to increase in the next 12 months. Unsure 9% Yes 39% Source: 2014 B2C Content Marketing Trends—North America: Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs No 52%
  32. 32. Content Strategy Approach Content Audit Strategy Workflow and Delivery Govern Create
  33. 33. Conducting an Audit Identified Goal Channel Key Messages Purpose (Training, Education, CTA, Promo) Goal Alignment Distribution/Reach Cross Organization Budget Allocation Rating Reporting Your Findings Summary Content Audit Factors Rating System Findings of Audit Strengths Weaknesses Distinct Gaps Recommendations Best Practices Next Steps
  34. 34. Make the Strategy Stick: Content Tactical Plan Target Audience Goal(s) to influence Content outlined Tactic Execution & Reach Timeline Budget implication Measurement Outline of success
  35. 35. How to Measure Content Primary Content Indicators Secondary Content Indicators User Indicators Source: “The objective approach,” Joe Pulizzi, IABC Communication World, November 2013
  36. 36. Trend: Own the Brand Experience You need to own the customer experience from start to finish. Marketing/communications should OWN the customer experience (at least the understanding of it). Why is owning the brand experience so important?
  37. 37. Trend: Designing the CX The Customer Experience (CX) looks at every experience and interaction across the customer journey. CX UX Source:
  38. 38. CX Trend Meets Measurable Results USAA saw a 77% Y-O-Y increase in site visitors, a 15% increase in completed auto loans and a 23% increase in vehicles sold when it launched a platform for researching, financing and insuring vehicle purchases. Source:: Forrester’s The Business Impact Of Customer Experience, June 10, 2013
  39. 39. Multi-channel Approach: Trends for Integrating Print and the Digital World
  40. 40. Trends: Multi-channel Approach Does this sound familiar? We need…more Facebook likes. We need…more Twitter followers. We need…more YouTube videos. We need…to be on Pinterest. We need…to figure out Google+. This is in addition to your traditional print and digital channels!
  41. 41. Ask the Initial Questions Who are you trying to reach? Start by being “medium agnostic” and choosing the medium based on where your targets are What is the conversation you’re trying to have? Multi-channel doesn’t take place of an overall marketing strategy, good content or consistent positioning
  42. 42. Successful Multi-channel Approach
  43. 43. Trend: Make It Easy Financial marketers continue to move toward tools that simplify life for their customers/members …
  44. 44. Make it Easy in Action This section guides people to web This section will allow people to click on their age group to view age specific content General retirement planning article or timely news This section will guide people to take action – anything from increasing their contribution to checking out a blog. This section will always contain a poll. The recipient will be able to see how everyone answered after they make a selection.
  45. 45. Digital Trend: Intelligent Objects “Everyday objects are evolving into tech-infused smart devices with augmented functionality. As more ordinary items become interactive, intelligent objects, our interactions with them will get more interesting, enjoyable and helpful.” Source: JWT Intelligence 10 Trends for 2013
  46. 46. Intelligent Objects in Action: GPS & Maps Integration Mobile sites and apps can access device specific features such as the GPS or camera to provide more functionality
  47. 47. Intelligent Objects in Action: Responsive Design BENEFITS PITFALLS Consistent user experience across all platforms Limited ability to customize the experience and access device specific features Streamlined site management Slower and less responsive Reduced maintenance risks and improved release cycles Longer initial development times and higher upfront costs Can improve analytic visibility Can complicate your ability to with a single URL structure for segment traffic sources and all devices plan upgrades
  48. 48. Trend: Re-emergence of Email 91% of consumers reported checking their email at least once a day. “Nearly 90% of businesses said email marketing was 'very important' or 'important', and yet the DMA also reports that over a third of businesses are unable to calculate ROI from email marketing.”
  49. 49. Trend: Email 3.0 As email marketing has evolved into a mature advertising medium, campaigns have advanced to include more targeting and interactive content PURLs (Personalized URLs) provide each subscriber with their own unique Web address to offer a more customized experience and drive access in offline marketing Triggered campaigns provide additional content and features based on subscriber interactions with your standard email campaigns and websites Drip campaigns allow users to opt-in for a pre-defined series of emails based on their preferences
  50. 50. Email ROI in Action: Planning Successful Campaigns Successful campaigns require a strategy that balances the interplay between your marketing goals, target audiences and available email lists Personalization features should be determined before creative is developed to ensure tight integration between brand, content needs and the final design Strategy Marketing Goals Target Audiences Content Personalization List Definition Creative Execution
  51. 51. Email 3.0 in Action: Onboarding Streamline welcome messaging and product education Sync products so customers receive the right message for the right products Email 1 Email 2 Email 3 Email 4 Email 5 Email 6
  52. 52. Email 3.0 in Action: Triggering 1 week later 2 weeks later Trigger #1 Mortgage Offer Email Trigger #2 Mortgage Offer Email Shared Landing Page
  53. 53. Email 3.0 in Action: Drip Campaigns Marketing automation features enable you to configure campaigns in advance including the ability for users to select which “track” they wish to receive. Start Track Welcome Switch Track Business Track Email 1 Email 2 Email 3 Email 4 Email 2 Email 3 Email 4 Personal Track Email 1 In this example, users select business or personal, and then receive a series of 4 emails over time.
  54. 54. Trend: Human-centered Search Google recently introduced a new search algorithm called Hummingbird that combines 200 separate services to offer a more conversational and semantic search The goal is to better focus on the “meaning” behind the words For example, a search for “What’s the closest place to buy the iPhone 5s to my home?” will recognize that a “place” signifies a traditional store and that an iPhone 5s is a particular kind of device Hummingbird doesn’t replace the traditional PageRank algorithm and your current search engine tactics do not need to change
  55. 55. Human Search in Action Hummingbird works with voice enabled search to provide intelligent answers to spoken queries such as “Where is the nearest ATM?”
  56. 56. Human Search in Action Search can be combined with “retargeting” or “remarketing” to improve your online lead conversion As Beth is fond of saying, “Retargeting is the pair of shoes that keeps following you around the web” Advertisers purchase targeted keywords and then tag pages on their site These tags display additional targeted ads during future web browsing
  57. 57. Questions & Answers
  58. 58. About BlueSpire What we do… BlueSpire provides strategic marketing solutions for clients in health and wealth industries, focusing on content marketing that elevates audience engagement and inspires action. 30 years of experience with financial institutions Clients include some of the largest names in the industry To request a consultation, visit