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UK content marketing for finance brands

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Apps, jokes and crises

In 2019, digital banks grew by a massive 150% in the UK, with the addition of more than six million customers bringing the total number to 19.6 million.

With so many people turning to their phones to manage their money and shifting the way they interact with finance brands, there’s no doubt content marketing is becoming more and more important for finance brands.

But where, and how, should UK content marketers target their strategies? Here we take a look at what’s winning in UK content marketing, from Monzo’s easy-to-use app, to HSBC’s clever mix of humour and how tos.

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UK content marketing is all about the finance app

Neglect the app at your peril. In 2018, 3.4 billion finance apps were downloaded globally, representing a 75% increase since 2016—and at 45%, the UK experienced the 6th highest growth in the world, according to App Annie’s 2019 State of Mobile: Banking and Finance Report.

The report also shows that UK downloaders are among the most engaged users on the planet, checking their finance apps more than seven times per week, at a frequency second only to that of Australians, who check theirs more than ten times per week. All in all, the total number of finance app sessions in the UK increased by more than 200% between 2016 and 2018.

The total number of finance app sessions in the UK increased by more than 200% between 2016 and 2018.

The frontrunner in the UK’s finance app race is Monzo, which grew downloads by 200% in 2019, followed by Virgin Money Credit Card, Starling Bank and Revolut.

Humour and how-tos on social media

When it comes to social media, UK finance brands are still lagging behind their counterparts in India and the USA, among other nations, according to The Financial Brand.

The highest-performing bank across Facebook, Twitter and YouTube in the fourth quarter of 2019 was HSBC, ranked 28th in the world, followed by Natwest at 42nd, UBS at 43rd, Santander at 44th and Standard Chartered at 52nd.

One of the keys to HSBC’s success is its understanding of the importance of humour to the UK audience. Finance content marketing can—and should—get a laugh every now and again. The bank’s funny YouTube videos have racked up tens of thousands of views, including 2019’s ‘We Are Not an Island’ and 2018’s ‘Global Citizen’, starring comedian Richard Ayoade.

On a more serious note, HSBC has jumped on the rise of mobile banking and addressing the importance of digital education through popular, bite-sized videos covering how-tos of all kinds, from depositing cheques, to creating new payees, which are consistently attracting views in their thousands.

Brexit, pandemic, recession: responding to crises

During the past year or so, the UK has lurched from one crisis to another, from Brexit to the COVID-19 pandemic to a recession. The resulting continual uncertainty is, for many, political, physical and financial. Right now, around 60% of the UK’s population is anxious about the economy’s ability to recover, so it’s only natural that UK customers are looking to finance brands for help, reassurance and leadership.

One finance brand that’s been delivering on all three fronts is NatWest, which has more than 378,000 followers on Facebook. Its multi-faceted finance content marketing strategy covers timely, practical advice, such as this blog post on what to do when a mortgage payment holiday ends; connections to community through social media posts supporting the NHS, England Cricket and Pride; and corporate social responsibility via a fundraiser for the National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal.

As a UK finance content marketing agency we can help you implement a content and distribution strategy that delivers results. Get in touch.

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From strategy through to content production, distribution and measurement, we can help. Get in touch.

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Jasmine Crittenden
Jasmine Crittenden has written extensively for major finance brands including Westpac, BT Financial Group, Suncorp and Aberdeen Standard Investments – across both digital and print. She’s an expert in content that puts the human element in finance marketing, be it connecting with local communities, inspiring millennials to care about super or clarifying the complexities of personal loans.