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How current Aced Banking for Millennials GenZ: Masterclass in Growth Marketing and Influencer Marketing

Summary

1 How current Aced Banking for Millennials GenZ: Masterclass in Growth Marketing and Influencer Marketing1.1 Current offers services and is a challenger bank.1.2 Three lessons to learn from Current’s success in growth1.3 11.3.1 Advertising old-school style by leveraging endorsements from […]

How current Aced Banking for Millennials GenZ: Masterclass in Growth Marketing and Influencer Marketing

It is an understatement to say that millennials/GenZ (MZ) are important economic drivers and incredibly valuable to the banking sector. By 2030, the U.S. MZ will inherit $68 trillion from its boomer parents. MZ in the U.S. is expected to see a fivefold increase of their wealth, thanks to one of the largest wealth transfers in history. MZ’s revenue contribution will increase from $15.7 billion to $27 billion over the next four-years. Although most banks and fintech brands are trying to tap into the MZ market, there is one bank that has succeeded. Current, a U.S.-based mobile-only challenger bank that is mobile-only, has not only won the lottery but also gained the Midas touch.

The Millennials and Generation ZAmericans are expected to inherit.$68 TrillionFrom theirBoomer parentsBy2030.

With one of the biggest wealth transfers in history, millennials and Gen Z in the U.S. will observe a Fivefold increaseIn theirWealth.

Current created a brand image for millennials/Gen Z using inclusiveness, honest messaging and word-of-mouth from key opinion leaders. As Stuart Sopp, CEO of Current, mentions in a chat with Tearsheet, the bank sought to serve MZ as well as underserved segments like people living paycheck to paycheck and teens.

This was possible because the challenger bank used lower fees or no fees, and made early direct deposits. Let’s take a look at Current’s USP before we dive into Current’s growth strategy, and clever use of influencer marketing.

Current offers services and is a challenger bank.

  • Faster payments up to 2 daysCurrent is a challenger bank that offers 24/7 support and free withdrawals from 55,000 ATMs worldwide. However, the most important difference between them and traditional banks is how quickly funds are processed into their accounts. Current boasts that it can send its paychecks as fast as two days through direct deposit. This has been a great benefit for people who live paycheck to paycheck, as well as gig-economy workers and teens. Current lets you access your funds immediately, instead of holding on to your money and waiting for your employer to deliver. A current premium checking account is a safe and secure way to avoid overdraft fees and late penalties.
  • Free overdrafts up to $100: Are you worried about your bank account running out of money? Premium current members can access up to $100 with the Current debit card without any overdraft fees using Overdrive(tm). This feature is useful when you have an extra amount. No hidden fees or minimum balance requirements: This is one of the main reasons why people don’t want to bank with certain financial institutions. Current doesn’t require you to maintain a minimum balance, or pay additional fees that you weren’t aware of when you opened the checking account.
  • Redeemable points that never expireYou earn points for every in-store purchase you make with the Current Card. All users have the ability to redeem these points, but premium users are able to earn more points at certain locations. However, the purchases must be made at participating retailers. These can be found on our points map. You can redeem points for cash, premium subscriptions or cash. The best part? They don’t expire!
  • Instant gas hold refundsGas stations will charge you up to $75 upfront for authorizing your card. They don’t know the final transaction amount. After the authorization amount has been matched against the final settlement, the remainder of the amount will be credited to your account within 3-5 business days. The authorizations for current accounts that are paid immediately reflect in the account’s hold amount.
  • Save Pods and Spend Insights for YourselfCurrent provides mobile banking with instant spending notifications. It also sends personalized insights to track your spending and where you’ve been. Current allows you to transfer money into Savings Pods so that you can save for travels and other expenses. One pod can be created for a basic account, while premium members can have up to three. Current Pay allows instant and free money transfers, as well as support for Apple Pay or Google Pay payments.
  • For under-18s, teen bank accountsTeen banking accounts are one of their most popular and sought-after offerings. They allow parents to set allowances, limit spending, block transactions from certain clients, and much more. Parents can also assign chores to their children and reward them for completing the tasks successfully. Current promotes financial literacy and independence in teenagers through features such as these.

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Three lessons to learn from Current’s success in growth

Current now has more than 2 million users. This is despite the influx of nearly 200,000 users that occurred in April and May 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The trend in week-wise monthly active users (MAUs), over the past 3 months, is a sign of the future growth.

MAU trend of Current app | Courtesy Apptopia

This growth was achieved by Current’s purpose-driven brand actions and unique functionalities and practical features. It also demonstrates a dedication to underserved communities and honest and open communication. Let’s dive into the key lessons that Current’s growth has taught us.

1

Advertising old-school style by leveraging endorsements from key opinion leaders

Current’s go to market strategy is based on influencer marketing. The challenger bank realized that they needed to target social media channels in order to reach the desired audience (i.e. millennials and Gen Z). Current partnered closely with influencers to develop a customized marketing strategy for the MZ audience.

Trust is key when it comes to banking, monetary matters, particularly for millennials and Generation Z (MZ). Influencer marketing, if done correctly, can create a steady stream of users who trust the brand. However, incorrect messaging can make the brand look like an advertisement and can cause further damage.

 According to Influencer marketing researchSubmitted byMintel, traits like ‘Entertain‘,Honest‘, andFunny‘ is placed higher than traditional financial attributes such as ‘Provides useful information“.

This further illustrates the point that honestAndTrustworthy messagingThese are the main criteria for banks that run influencer campaigns.

 

what social media followers look for in an influencer

MZ has become very distrusting of ads placed on TV networks and social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. It doesn’t help that ads can be run by anyone. Here are the influencers and key opinion leaders. It is much more credible for a person to endorse a product/service if they are trustworthy and credible. Social media influencers, despite growing suspicions about advertising and marketing are an accepted and trustworthy source of information.

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 Mintel’s research indicates that only 10%OfAdults followAfinancial services brandOnSocial media.

The research further shows Older consumers Follow these brands for moreComparable toMillennialsAndGen ZWho tend toFollow influencers more.

 

millennials and gen z follows influencers

Current collaborations with influencers such as Jade (90.5 million likes, 4 million TikTok fans) and Kelz (38.2million likes, 2.9 million TikTok subscribers) to discuss the brand’s vision and purpose for inclusive banking in underserved communities. These personalities are not well-known to older people, but they are hugely popular with Gen Z.

What is Current’s method of choosing influencers for work?

Comperemedia’s research has shown that Instagram influencers can be divided according to their followers.

  • Mega: 1,000,000 followers or more
  • Macro: 500,000-1 Million
  • Mid-Tier: 50,000 – 500,000
  • Micro: 10,000 to 50.000
  • Nanotechnology below 10,000
 The Mintel research further indicates that Most financial institutionsTend toWorkWithMid-tier influencersAccounting63%)Then, follow by themicro category(accounting19%), then the other leagues.

The research also indicated that Large financial institutionsLikeWells FargoAndAmerican ExpressSpend most of your time on the internet.influencer marketing budgetOnMid-tierAndMicro-influencers.

Two reasons could be the root cause. The first is the extra effort that micro and nano influencers put into connecting with their followers. Second, they are cheaper while achieving higher engagement numbers. Although mid-tier, nano, and micro influencers have a familiar voice, they are not the only ones to rely on. Current partners with influencers with varying following counts, ranging from 50,000 to more than a million.

The question is, how does Current choose who to work with? It is important to start by understanding your audience. It’s important to start by understanding the audience. It’s now time to get to know their preferences and what they care about.

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Current’s video series ‘The Hustle,’ which aims to showcase and document inspirational entrepreneurs, content creators and photographers from the black community, is one of these examples.

These episodes include initiatives such as:

  • Souls in Focus is a visual artist collective founded by two Brooklyn-based creatives to tell stories for and through the black community.
  • Byas & Leon is an independent clothing shop in Brooklyn, NY that was founded by Rony Byas & Harvey Leon in January 2019. They are committed to creating ethical and sustainable fashion wear, while also supporting black-owned brands.
  • Whose your Landlord (WYL is a community-based realty company that educates renters about their rights and resolves eviction disputes. It also ensures everyone is protected and informed.

hustle series of videos influencer marketing current

Current communicates its core purpose of improving financial outcomes for individuals and their communities through these episodes. Current uses the credibility and relatability of the influencer to promote the brand’s purpose, and build trust with existing and potential new customers.

You may be wondering if these influencers don’t come from banking or finance. However, Current’s audience base has so many that they don’t need to stick with a specific category such as finance influencer.

It is not easy to find the right people to help you promote your vision. Influencer marketing can be a complex process. It is important to build trust with these people just like you would with customers. Although there is a scientific component to successful campaigns and programs it is more than just an algorithm.

Trust the content creator, and give them enough time to create something that is relevant and interesting for your audience. Current’s teams adhere to this principle. They not only onboard influential content creators but also curate their own material to provide value to them and their followers (potential customers).

Let’s sum it all: Here are some tips to maximize your influencer marketing.

  • Instead of simply onboarding them and paying them, collaborate with influencers. Although they may be their representatives, it is still your brand. As such, you are the primary stakeholder.
  • You don’t have to stick with the same old stock photos and aesthetics. Create something original that stands out from the crowd.
  • Look for underserved communities to see what you can do. Brands are not making an effort to reach out to Hispanic communities, even though they recognize them as a potential growth market in financial services.
  • To ensure that your product/service placement conforms to Federal Trade Commission rules, you must properly vet it. Before author concepts are approved, ensure that there is a product story fit. Sometimes be generic, but other times you should focus on product placement.
  • Continue to test and create storylines. Learning never ends in this long game.

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Honesty and transparency in communication about brand purpose and value

Generation Z and Millennials are drawn to purpose-driven brands. MZ prefers that its favourite brands stand up for what is right. This may not seem like something brands should actively pursue, but when you consider that millennials and Gen Z are poised to be the largest consumer segment, it makes perfect economic sense.

Although most brands today portray a sense or purpose in their messaging, it can often come across as artificial and fake. Brand purpose should not be a noun but a verb. It should be present in all actions of the brand, not just communications.

 As Jeff FrommAuthor of many books on the deciphering of theConsumer behavior in the MZ audience like ‘Marketing to Millennials‘,Marketing to Gen Z” and “The Purpose Advantage“, states to be genuinely becomePurpose-drivenIt is vital for brands toFocusOnSociety?FunctionalAndEmotional benefitsFor the customer.
  • Societal BenefitsAs the name implies, a brand should be able do good things for the community and society. This will make the brand stand out from the rest and appeal to Gen Z and millennials.
  • Functional benefits: Basically, any advantage that makes it more convenient, quicker, or easier for customers to use your services. These could include speed, bandwidth and performance of stock company stocks.
  • Emotional benefitsThe brand’s ability connect emotionally with customers is a crucial factor in the product’s usage and consumption. A strong brand-customer relationship will get your customer to buy your product, even if it means they have to pay more.

What did Current do to achieve this feat?

Current is a challenger bank that targets Americans who are not served by traditional banks. This group of users represents almost half the country’s population. This segment includes hourly workers in the service and gig economy, as well as young people. The focus is on Gen Z and millennials.

Through the use of smart marketing campaigns and messaging, the societal benefits are clearly communicated. Bank reiterates its commitment to solving the problems that underserved communities face.

The bank boasts functional benefits such as faster direct deposit, no hidden fees, instant gas hold refunds and free overdrafts up to $100.

It is impossible to overstate the emotional connection that the brand makes with its users through honest messaging, targeted influencer marketing campaigns and word-of mouth referrals.

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3Referrals and word-of-mouth marketing are key strategies

Voices closer to home are more powerful when it comes to financial matters. Ad placements are less important than the voices of friends, family, or acquaintances. Imagine that you are browsing your social media feed one day and see all your colleagues and mutual acquaintances talking about a product or service. What will your first reaction be? You’re probably going to check out the product or service. You will at least have the brand name in your head. The next time you hear the name mentioned on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, it will trigger your thoughts.

Customers’ perceptions of a brand and its products are influenced largely by word-of-mouth. Current’s fast and convenient direct deposit feature, among many other features, has helped to build a community of customers who are willing to recommend the bank to their friends on social media.

Let’s take one example: When the U.S. Government was distributing stimulus checks, Current released the payments quicker than other banks. Users took notice. This challenger bank solved a real problem and helped a large portion of their audience. The next step was a flood of tweets that thanked the bank and recommended more people to use it.

tweets and word of mouth referrals

Current’s engagement with the tweets was one of the most important lessons. It shows the brand’s conscious effort to help users and build an online community of happy customers.

The millennial and Gen Z banking mindsets decoded

Morning Consult and Business Insider reports that millennials delay major life events such as buying a house, getting married and investing in medical insurance.

millennials genz financial approach

The way they approach wealth and finance is one of the most striking differences between Gen Z/Millennials and previous generations. Gen Z and millennials are known for delaying major financial decisions in order to make space for hobbies, interests, and other lifestyle choices.

Banks and financial institutions must ensure that their communications are aligned with the right life stage. Marketing dollars wasted on the wrong people is not a return. Banks must account for the millennials’ significantly altered life cycles.

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 What is the best way for Gen Z and millennials to approach personal finance?

  • Modern financial products like ILPs (investment linked insurance policy), mutual funds and goal-based investments are preferable to traditional assets like cash and real estate.
  • This has led to the rise of digital wallets, P2P lending and free trading apps among other innovative offerings. The creation of one app has allowed for the management of all aspects personal finance, including investments, utility bill payments, money transfer, credit, and other financial matters.

How can banks win the trust of Gen Z and millennials?

Trust is essential to driving quality consumer engagement in a world full of security breaches. Referral programs are one of the most effective (and also the most difficult) ways to build trust.

American Express has one of the best credit card referral programs. More than 10% of new customers are referred by American Express.

You can do it by:

  • Avoid using technical terms and financial jargons in consumer communications
  • Attract consumers’ attention as they browse your app/website. Encourage them to look through your portfolio.
  • Communicate clearly, concisely, and consistently
  • Encourage customers to share your services and leverage their social capital
  • Every communication, whether a welcome message or marketing email, should be tagged with the life event that the customer is planning.
  • Customers with insight-based insights that help them make informed decisions can be educated and empowered.

To be able to recommend products that are appropriate for different customer types, a bank must have a good understanding of the life stages shown in the table. These life stages are segmented according to age so customers with different needs will have different products.

life stage banks should be aware of

MoEngage is a financial brand that helps banks and financial institutions to efficiently engage and retain customers.

MoEngage’s intelligent Customer Engagement Platform was built for mobile-first. It allows financial institutions and banks to seamlessly connect with customers across multiple channels. This integrated platform includes applications that automate and analyze data, as well as AI-enabled optimizations of every campaign.

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how moengage can help banks

Integrating online and offline channels will create a [email protected] customer perspective

MoEngage allows companies to manage campaigns via push notifications, email, in-app messaging and web push. This platform allows you to design, visualize, and deploy omnichannel campaigns. They reach the right people at the right times through the right channels and with the right message.

Even the most successful campaigns can only be as effective as the data underneath them. A [email protected] view of your customers is essential to a successful campaign. Two main types of data are required to create a [email protected] view of your customer.

  • User Events: These are primarily a user’s online behavior as well as their interactions with the website/app.
  • Derived User Attributes (DUA): Details about the user such as their location, phone OS, and device used. These attributes are combined in this category.

user attributes and behavior

Boost your push notifications

Push notifications can be a great way to grab your users’ attention. MoEngage uses powerful visual elements to keep users interested from the moment they open the app, and throughout the marketing automation process.

personalized push notification

Due to network and device restrictions, between 40% and 70% of Android customers don’t receive push notifications. Worse, most mobile marketing automation software doesn’t measure the delivery rate of notifications to customers’ mobile devices. You will get a distorted representation of the sent rate to Apple’s APNS servers and Google’s FCM.

Push Amplification allows you to reach customers that would otherwise be overlooked and can immediately increase retention rates. MoEngage SDK has an ‘augmented notification delivery channel’. The MoEngage Push Amplification is a fallback channel to FCM/APNS that delivers notifications directly to users’ phones, bypassing the difficulties of traditional push notification.

push amplification

Segment and create personas for high-performance campaigns

Segmentation refers to analyzing your user data and grouping users that share similar behaviors or attributes. Segmentation can be described as ‘users that searched for Mutual Fund Investments via the app/site’, users who made more than five transactions within seven days, and ‘Users that browsed Mutual Funds before investing in them’. Segmentation can also include user attributes like the model of mobile phone and place of residence.

MoEngage allows you to create simple segments of users in two ways.

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RFM Analysis (Recency Frequency, Monetary).Using the RFM chart, create a list of users that is based on their likelihood of making a purchase, their overall frequency and the monetary worth of purchases. The RFM chart provides a quick overview of all users, from Dormant through Champion, and allows you to create the right marketing campaigns.

rfm segmentation model

Advanced Customized SegmentationSegment your users using user events (such as completed a fund transfer within the last 7 days) or derived user attributes (such as being located in Singapore). These custom segments allow you to create high-performing marketing campaigns easily.

advanced segmentation

Create personalized omnichannel journeys that span customer’s entire life cycle

77% of consumers want personalized content online. Financial institutions need to learn how to understand and meet each person’s needs. Fintech brands and banks can acquire customers through multiple channels. It is a challenge to get these users to explore other product offerings and to onboard them.

MoEngage makes it easy to attract new customers, retain existing customers, and encourage them to refer others. Banks and fintech companies can create marketing automation flows that are simple to visualize, deploy, and share across all channels with MoEngage Flows. Flows manages all customer touchpoints, from onboarding prospects to earning referrals.

user journeys

Emails that land in the ‘Primary’ inbox, not ‘Spam, will be sent

Emailing your bank customers does not guarantee you will convert or run high-performing campaigns. This is how intelligent customer engagement tools can transform email marketing.

  • Personalized contentMoEngage allows you to customize the placement of features/products in emails based on customer preferences. Relevant content will lead to higher conversion rates.
  • Directly to the primary mailbox: We’ve all been there. Our well-written emails have ended up in spam and never seen by customers. MoEngage guarantees you over 95% inbox placement rates.
  • Delivery optimization assistance from end-to-endUsing our drag-and-drop Email Builder tool, you can insert animated gifs or other interactive elements. We can help you create an email marketing campaign and help you analyze it.

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