Thought Leadership: Bridging the gap between consumers and financial marketers

By Tom Rolph, VP of EMEA, Tapad — The financial sector is one of the only industries that engages with a customer throughout their whole life. From bank accounts to pension schemes, most customers interact with at least one financial product during each life stage — either directly or on behalf of someone else. Understanding these customers and how their purchasing process evolves over time is tricky business for marketers due to the complexity of the customer journey.

Financial services is an industry where customers take their time before making a purchase. For example, when buying a mortgage, it can take years of research and meetings with the bank before a customer ends up in their new home. In that time, they may have researched on their mobile on the train to work, have used an online banking app on a tablet, as well as looked up offers on a work laptop.

A finance marketer needs to be able to to map this journey in order to achieve a holistic view of their customers. To do this, it’s necessary to look at consumer’s individual interests, intent, and conversion behaviour across the multiple devices that they have access to. This then allows marketers to create an accurate behavioural model, resulting in targeting scalability and increased marketing efficiency. Developing this type of model helps pinpoint prospects across networked devices.

It’s easy to overlook key elements that can help towards identifying activity across different devices, but by considering the broader landscape, financial marketers are able to get a better understanding of the consumer.

Customising through cross device

Customisation is limited if it’s solely based on a person’s single device behaviour. It’s no surprise that 35% of conversions happen on a device other than where the first impression occurred. Without fully understanding how the consumer interacts with each device, you end up with an extremely narrow view of who the customer is. By tailoring content based on a consumer’s device preferences, marketers are far more likely to see an increase in engagement and therefore, an increase in conversions.

For example, we’ve witnessed clients in the financial sector see a 551% uplift in conversions after implementing an cross-device strategy. This was achieved by extending the reach of the campaign by using the advertiser’s data management platform to identify qualified audiences before targeting them.

Frequency capping

The introduction of GDPR is proof that consumers are becoming fatigued by repetitive ads. Yet so many marketers get the frequency of the ads they are serving wrong and are missing the opportunity to generate conversions.

Frequency capping is used to control over exposure to ads and it isn’t a new idea, but with smaller and more nimble companies such as Monzo and Tide disrupting the finance sector, it has never been a more competitive industry. But setting the wrong ad frequency cap on an advertising campaign can result in bombarding the consumer with ads over a short period of time, which can contribute to a customer deciding to go elsewhere.

Something as simple as frequency capping at the user level rather than just device level also has the potential to significantly reduce wasted spend.

“Standby” device inventory

Despite mobile firmly cementing itself as the first screen and consumers not only spending more time on mobile devices, but also making more purchases on them, bigger decisions such as researching mortgages or applying for a credit card are still more likely to be done on a larger screen such as desktop.

Working out how to use the other available devices to increase conversions is a tough but easy way to see uplift. This can be done by taking a retargeting pool of device/cookie IDs and reaching people across all their devices, not just the one they are most likely to purchase on.

For example, if a customer visits a bank’s website, and is searching for a particular product, every company that offers that product is going to try to retarget them across the web. Rather than ending up paying a huge premium to target this particular customer, it makes far more sense to target them on their other devices, like their mobile phone for example.

In today’s competitive digital market, it’s imperative to understand the person behind the data and not take any interactions for granted. The journey people take when purchasing financial products is complex, but marketers are able to map out a better route to build a relationship with customers by understanding their behaviour and cross-device habits. Those that do this well will not only see significant ROI but will also be able to break through the competition’s noise and make a positive, lasting impression on the customer.

(Originally posted on Global Banking and Finance Review)