This is article 1 of a 3 part series.
FinTech is booming. Searches for the term have exploded over the last two years, and FinTechs, both startups and those more established, are finding themselves engaged in a struggle to get noticed.
We all know FinTechs, and other organisations for that matter, who have thrown an awful lot of money at solving this conundrum. For those who have more humble budgets but who still want to stand out from the crowd, this post looks at the marketing essentials that should be in place that won’t blow the budget Transferwise-style.
Back to basics
Due to an abundance of creativity and technical knowledge, FinTechs are often great practitioners of UX and good design, so for now, we’re going to park that aspect of marketing and focus on other areas.
What problem are you solving, and who is it for?
FinTechs are great at creating innovative tech solutions and have an in-depth knowledge of their product. But when it comes to devising a marketing strategy and turning those features into benefits, things can get a little more complicated. It really all boils down to two crucial questions:
- What problem does the product solve?
- Who will benefit from using it?
The answers to these two questions should be at the core of your strategy – and you need to be able to communicate answers to these questions in the lexicon of your target audience. It’s fine to speak in technical terms if you are trying to engage with other FinTechs in your niche but if your product or service has a wider appeal, then the language needs to be simplified so that it can be understood by those in a broader industry group or Joe Public.
Who are these people?
Once you’ve nailed the answers to the questions above, it’s time to zero in on your target demographic. Begin to build a picture of your ideal clients. Find out what industries they work in, which publications they read, which social platforms they prefer, what products they use, what they like, dislike… make it as comprehensive as possible. Once you’ve created a demographic profile for each type of client you seek the attention of, it will be far easier to create more focused and targeted online campaigns – a large chunk of the initial planning and research will be done already.
Competitor analysis (yes, you probably do have them)
Even though your product may be very niche, and it may only service a very specific type of client, and solve a very particular problem, you can almost guarantee that someone else, in some guise or another, is offering a similar solution.
Take the time to research:
- Who is talking about your competitors?
- What your competitors are talking about?
- Where have your competitors been networking? (events/conferences etc.)
- Why do you think your competitors are getting noticed?
It’s quite likely that the competitors you have in the real world may be very different to those who are succeeding online – this is an often-overlooked consideration. A good starting point is to Google some of the products or services that you offer (generic phrases rather than brand or specific product names) to see who ranks well. Whether you like it or not, these companies are your competitors too.
An important part of competitor analysis is a backlink audit. This involves analysing links that point to your competitors’ domains, identifying the most authoritative sites they appear on, and then researching each of these sites to find out how your brand could also be featured by them.
Analysis of how their brand-focussed content performs, as well as content they have published themselves, all helps to build a picture of what you’ll be up against, what the most popular trends are, and will identify whether there are any gaps in your competitor’s strategy that you can take advantage of.
Get found and be clear
Keyword research is not just critical for SEO, it should provide the backbone of how you want your brand to be positioned – and it’s got to make sense to the people searching for your solutions.
Just as important as deciding on a brand name for your FinTech company is discovering what your potential customers will use to search for you online. If your brand name is ‘Potato’ and your website describes your product as ‘a truly innovative solution for ecommerce’; well, that tells me nothing about who you are, or what your product is, and only vaguely who your product is for.
If it’s an omnichannel solution that reduces chargebacks for online merchants – say that instead.
Think about what your customers might search for to find you. In this example:
- Prevent chargebacks solution
- Reduce chargebacks software
- Chargeback protection IT
- Chargeback prevention help
From here, you can begin to write optimised meta titles and descriptions, webpage content, and marketing collateral that includes keywords relevant to your business.
Website is alive and kicking
And finally, although this may sound like an obvious one, it’s amazing how many brands get it wrong by not even having a functional website live. A single page with an ambiguous logo proudly stating ‘coming soon…’ isn’t going to cut it if you are planning on putting your URL in the marketing collateral being distributed to the media, your potential investors, or your future clients.
Sites should be thoroughly audited from a technical perspective before launch, and should be linked to Google Analytics and Google Search Console to ensure that you are able to keep tabs on any technical issues with the website and also to monitor site traffic. By keeping track of who comes to your site, how long they stay, and what content they read, you’ll be able to see which marketing activity is truly delivering value, and more importantly, what isn’t.
Just because you’re a FinTech operating at the cutting edge of payments, regulation, or insurance doesn’t mean that you don’t need to have the basics in place before you start expecting customers or investment.
Want a bit more digital marketing advice from an agency that loves its FinTech clients? Have a chat with us today.
Also published on Medium.