The finance sector is often thought to be one of the more constricted industries when it comes to what you can and can’t do and in most parts, this is true. There are lots of regulations and strict guidelines which the compliance team need to follow which means that the Marketing Teams roles can sometimes be quite challenging.
We often get asked what you can do when it comes to marketing in industries that are heavily regulated and my answer will always be that you can do anything as long as you work as a team. Of course, you will always need to get sign off from compliance at every step of the process but the more you work together, the more you will learn. Essentially, this will mean that for future ideas that you want to run with, the process get easier.
At Koozai, we like the phrase ‘Brand Centric Search’. This essentially means that your brand needs to be at the heart of everything you do and this is particularly important when it comes to how you appear in the search results. Potential customers tend to research finance companies (and any other company for that matter) before they make a purchase with them. If you only secure a couple of the top positions for your own brand name, you could be losing out on that all important traffic and worse still, that traffic could be going to your competitors.
There have been some examples of marketing for the finance sector that I have come across that rank really well for brand terms and in this post, I have compiled different forms of content and tied them back to a real life example so you can see how it has worked for other brands.
As with everything marketing related, it is vitally important not to simply copy what someone else has done. Innovation is key and you need to make sure you are thinking up new ideas and uncovering the ‘whitespace’ that others have not yet tapped into. A lot of these ideas will also rank for your brand name meaning that you will have further domination of page one in the SERPs for your brand.
So, let’s get started.
The Trusty Blog
I see so many websites that don’t have a blog (still) and this is something that really does need to change. Every website needs a blog so they can populate it with fresh, quality content that helps that site be seen as a thought-leader as well as grow traffic and generate conversions. This is even the case in the finance sector.
Legal & General have a blog and they have approached it in a different way to normal. The blog ‘belongs’ to Nigel, who is their CEO and he gives weekly commentary on the issues affecting the financial services industry.
The Mobile App
A good mobile app can be created for almost every business, you just need to work out what your target audience will want to download. If your competitor has already come up with the same idea, this is one example where you could potentially launch something with a similar concept but always try to add a unique spin on it.
I love this example from Aviva. You can
- View your insurance policies
- Look up all the advantages of being with Aviva
- Get reminders when your insurance policies are due for renewal
- Use their life cover estimator
- Watch rugby on your phone with exclusive content
- Xchange insurance policy details instantly if you have been involved in a motor accident
So you can see that features 1 to 3 would most likely be on any insurance companies app, but features 4 – 6 are unique to them.
The Simple Survey
Surveys are a great way for you to collect lots of data that no one else is going to have as the answers you generate are for your eyes only (until you want to share it of course). It is down to you to craft the questions and make sure that you are coming up with questions that are unique so the data you obtain is more valuable.
Take this example from Moneysupermarket. They came up with a concept of ‘Make Do & Mend’ and they asked their audience how they made savings using their creative skills.
The data that they get off the back of visitors completing the survey is worth its weight in gold. They can put together lots of pieces of content using the data that is completely unique to them and their competitors will not be able to replicate unless they copy the survey exactly.
Slideshare is a great way of building an authoritative channel and sharing some really useful content in a visual format. Depending on the topic, Slideshare content can generate a lot of views and awareness for your brand.
You can also use Slideshare to repurpose content that has performed well elsewhere. For example, you might have written a great blog post or created an infographic and you can use that content to create a presentation you can attract a different audience.
This is an example from Confused.com where they split down an infographic and added it to Slideshare where it got an additional 300 views.
This leads me nicely onto infographics. When done right, they can generate traffic, awareness, conversions, links and revenue but the idea needs to be unique enough for it to gain the attention.
A good way to create an infographic is by using the data that you generate from a survey, that way you know that the content is going to be unique to you and not have been done elsewhere. Obviously you need to make sure that the overall topic hasn’t been covered first!
Tesco Bank produced this infographic that shows readers how credit cards reflect who you are and what stage of your life you are going through. It is packed full of interesting statistics that readers of their blog would find interesting.
The Audience Engagement Campaign
I know I used Legal & General earlier with the blog example, but I really like the idea that they came up with for an engagement campaign. They dedicated a section of their site to the campaign which asked their audience ‘What would you say to your younger self?’ and then promoted it across all the social channels to drive awareness. In essence they were promoting their life insurance product, but they did it in a way that got the audience involved sharing their stories and then used this content to add to their site.
Another way to drive awareness of your brand and collect valuable data at the same time is by running a competition. Everyone likes winning things and as long as the prize is off enough value and is targeted to your audience, they can work really well.
In the example Confused.com teamed up with Nectar and were giving their audience a chance to win 60,000 Nectar points with their Pinterest competition. All you had to do was create a Pinterest board to show Confused.com what you would do with a million Nectar points to spend. Each image had to be tagged with the hashtag #pinforpoints and the board had to contain at least 20 images.
The Charity Page
If you support a charity, you can create a company page on sites like Just Giving and use this each time you do anything to raise money for a particular charity. These pages rank really well for brand terms and secure an extra spot on page one if they are kept up to date and used regularly.
The example below from Money.co.uk was set up so that whenever anyone in their team wanted to do something for charity, they would link to the company page and then all the charities being supported would appear at the bottom.
The Aggregator Pages
The main aggregator sites such as Compare the Market, Go Compare, Money Supermarket and Confused all list their suppliers on the site. Some of them even include entire supplier pages for each supplier showing all the different benefits and features for their insurance policies.
As you can see from this example on Confused.com for Admiral Insurance, the page is packed full of content all related to the brand and this ranks really well for brand terms.
The YouTube Channel
YouTube obviously has a lot of authority and weight behind it already so if you can set up a channel that works well for you, it will be easy to get that ranking on page one if someone searches for your brand.
The channel can be populated with great videos that really showcase your brand in a good light and you can have full control over how your brand comes across.
Look at this example from Liverpool Victoria (LV). The channel looks vibrant and exciting and has lots of great video content that has been viewed thousands of times!
There are lots of other content or websites that can rank for your brand name and this will be different for every industry so it is important that you do your research to work out what is going to work best for you. There maybe industry specific authority websites where you can create a profile and populate that with content so that it ranks or it could be that there are events that you could sponsor so you can get a company page on their site. Find what seems to work in your industry, try it and see if it works for your brand.
Like I said at the start of this post, before someone purchases anything but particually in the finance industry, they research the company first and dominating the results on page one for your brand is going to help.
Featured Image Credit: http://en.fotolia.com/id/62839619