The digital transformation that financial markets has undergone in the past two years has been nothing short of staggering.
One thing that has seen significant progress is the marketing efforts of financial organizations.
For financial services, digital marketing just keeps on getting better.
More advanced. More tech-driven. And most importantly of all, more impactful.
But what will happen to this transformative momentum when 2022 rolls around?
Will the industry continue to evolve at breakneck pace, or are there other roadblocks along the way to be aware of?
Read on to find out what we think 2022 holds for the financial markets, and how financial services digital marketing will change as a result.
Audiences want more “human” content
The way that finance professionals respond to content is changing.
It’s not just about value and thought leadership anymore, they also want to see advertising that is built on empathy, or that displays and provokes other human emotions.
With many businesses still struggling in the wake of the pandemic, and employees still spending hours disconnected from their colleagues and office, it’s only natural that audiences are looking for more meaningful connections in what they consume online.
Marketers are letting this guide their approach—crafting more purposeful advertising messages with the hopes of engaging customers and prospects on a deeper level.
Whether that’s by sharing insights that speak to a customer’s core values and beliefs, or even just delivering a refreshing dose of humour.
Meaning, purpose and emotion are powerful tools of engagement, and 2022 will show that they are no longer just commodities of the consumer industries.
More agile approaches
Since the first nationwide lockdown, financial marketers have begun basing their projects and campaigns on much shorter timescales.
According to insights from The Financial Brand, the annual marketing plan is fast becoming a thing of the past, in favour of campaigns as short as 90, 60 or even 30 days.
The result? Marketing activity is more streamlined, more focused, and more effective.
Concurrently, the same data suggests that financial markets businesses have also been making more frequent use of contingent digital marketing support—working with freelance creatives and specialist agency teams on more of a project-by-project basis.
The rise of “hybrid” events
With in-person networking out of the question during the UK’s “work from home” order, virtual conferencing and networking events skyrocketed in popularity.
This trend looks set to continue in the months to come.
Not just for virtual events, but for “hybrid” get-togethers too—where attendees can choose to either join online or in person.
Events like these present a fantastic opportunity in financial services digital marketing, with businesses able to dramatically expand their pool of potential clients and partners.
Teams across marketing, PR and events are even beginning to diversify to maximize their reach and attendance.
Where traditional corporate events might employ a stand-up comedian to broaden the appeal, financial marketers are injecting star value into their webinars and videoconferences to fill more seats.
Greater mix of assets for content marketing
While short articles and blog posts remain the most commonly used content assets (according to the Content Marketing Institute), other formats are beginning to broaden the mix of content that finance professionals engage with.
Traditional written copy is closely being followed by videos, case studies, online courses, and virtual events and webinars.
In the financial markets, webinars and courses are performing particularly well.
Fidelity Information Services for example, achieved a 200% increase in attendance by transitioning their in-person events to virtual experiences, as well as a 49% increase in deals influenced compared to the previous year.
While this report on content marketing predictions for 2022 revealed that video is seeing the highest and fastest-rising levels of investment, 58% of content marketers cited webinars as their top performing asset for generating and converting new business.
Precision is king
With many financial businesses feeling the pinch of shrinking marketing budgets, the goal of financial services digital marketing is shifting from ‘go big’ to ‘go smart’.
Financial markets professionals are keen to minimize wasted advertising spend and maximize returns.
As such, many are ramping up the levels of personalization and precision in their marketing efforts.
Whether that means using targeted messages on social media, or devising and delivering a full-blown Account Based Marketing strategy.
For the majority of the finance sector, LinkedIn is proving one of the more value-added ways to generate and convert leads.
However, for early adopters and organizations with bigger budgets and scope, It is also highly likely that we will see more AI-driven practices gaining their footing with the early adopters of the finance sector.
Conclusion: how financial services digital marketing is changing
Previously in the world of financial services, digital marketing has typically not been a core strategic focus.
But a lot has changed in recent months.
Financial markets businesses appear to be comfortably making their way through the centre of the pack in terms of marketing, with their vision looking well out in front.
In 2022, the key trends we see continuing on from this year are:-
- A focus on more “human” content, designed to create emotive audience responses
- More agile approaches to devising and executing campaigns
- The continual rise of hybrid and virtual events for networking and conferencing
- Marketers applying a much richer mix of different content formats
- The use of leaner, more targeted approaches to minimize cost and maximize ROI