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What do most people think of when they hear the term “content marketing”?
A regularly updated blog with solid content. Weekly newsletters to build rapport. Cool infographics to pass around on social media. Those are the basics. Someone with a slightly more advanced understanding of content marketing might mention videos and podcasts, too. He wouldn’t be wrong, either. All of those, collectively, make up the foundation of digital content marketing.
But, offering just those core content types isn’t enough to stand out today. 88 percent of B2B marketers use content marketing in some form. That isn’t just because it looks cool — per dollar spent, content marketing delivers more than 3x as many leads as traditional marketing.
With FinTech investment levels holding steady after a gangbusters 2015, the market is seeing a growing number of new entries. As forward-thinking companies that tend to hone their sights on millennials, more FinTech companies focus on content marketing compared to other industries.
For your content to stand head and shoulders above your FinTech competition, you have to approach it in a fresh way. Your “content marketing plan” shouldn’t just be a blog post treadmill. Approach content the same way an advertising agency would approach a new ad campaign for a Fortune 500 client. Be creative. Cater to your market, but don’t be afraid to be different.
To paint a clearer picture, let’s take a look at some of the most innovative content marketing campaigns from FinTech brands:
FinTech Circle Creates Industry Community that Amplifies Content
The purpose of great content is to build trust, catch eyeballs, and grow authority. But do you want to know when a piece of content really hits? When can you tell that a single piece of content is responsible for driving measurable revenue, and not just another check mark in the “nurturing” category of a sales funnel?
When people talk about it.
Plenty of excellent pieces of content are responsible for thousands of visits and never generate a single comment. What does that say about the insights shared in that article? What about a post with 10 comments? How about 100, or 1000?
Truly insightful content — when promoted well — gets people talking. If you want to extend the reach of a piece that you publish, creating your own industry-focused community can be a great way to encourage discussion.
While the group itself may focus on the industry at large, it’s become a huge tool for their brand. More than 21,000 have joined the group to date. The LinkedIn group serves as a launchpad for their content campaigns, showing up in front of 21,000 highly targeted content consumers.
More than that, it facilitates conversation. The group is tightly moderated, with strict rules around self-promotion. This ensures that when content is shared, that it gets maximum traction among the group.
Betterment Creates In-Depth Resource for All Personal Finance Topics
Betterment is a leading figure in the FinTech industry. As an investment-tech company that focuses on lowering taxes for investors, you might expect them to focus their content on investing. Maybe tailor their content for high-level investors that will generate higher returns for the company?
Instead of niching their content down, Betterment went broad. Their Resources Section provides in-depth advice on many areas of personal finance including investing (duh), taxes, budgeting, housing, retirement, and any other subject that falls under the “personal finance” umbrella. They also offer a number of tools such as mortgage calculators to their readers.
So why the wide-net approach? Without being able to pick their marketing team’s brains, Betterment is likely playing the long game. By attracting financially-minded people now — including the type of people that are just learning to budget for the first time — they are establishing long-term brand awareness. This will be critical as the FinTech industry matures. In ten years those early twenty-something readers will be ready to start investing and planning more seriously for retirement.
Mogo Creates Catered Events for Their Target Market
In the FinTech market, millennials are gold. According to a recent report from Contently, millennials don’t do much investing and they don’t have much trust for banks.
According to the report:
- 1 in 3 millennials has money in the stock market.
- Only 33% of millennials own a credit card.
- Home ownership among their age group is historically low.
It all comes back to how much millennials trust financial institutions. Let’s take a look at just how poorly they are regarded:
That’s right. Only 27 percent of millennials trust financial services companies.
For FinTech companies that are trying to break into the industry, that’s a problem. The upside is that if there is one thing millennials do trust, it is modern technology. They are less likely to work with a 1 on 1 financial adviser, and more likely to trust their finances to modern algorithms. You can remove that sour taste from their mouth by appealing to them in different ways. Get creative.
That’s exactly what Mogo did when they launched their new initiative, “Adulting 101.”
Despite the meme-y name, the educational series was a big hit among their attendees. If you aren’t hip with the internet lingo, they describe “adulting” in their video description:
“What is Adulting? Believe it or not, Adulting is a verb. It’s the act of being an adult at any age. Adulting includes: paying bills on time, being financially responsible, choosing the right bottle of wine to compliment that dreaded meal with your future in-laws and, of course, eating kale and quinoa.”
Part wine-tasting event, part financial education seminar — Adulting 101 gathered a group of young people, boozed them up, and gave them a rough overview of how to handle their finances responsibly using Mogo.
This wasn’t a one-time thing, either. Mogo did this across Canada for months before the campaign came to an end.
Their classes attracted a lot of attention. They were mentioned in major publications, grew their Facebook page to more than 30,000 follows, and increased brand awareness among their target market. Their mini-seminars were so successful that the company opened up MogoLounge, where they regularly hold personal finance lectures and discussions.
Acorns Publishes Magazine-Quality Publication
Having a really high-quality blog can do a lot for a company. But even the best blogs in the FinTech industry are still a far cry away from what most of us would consider hard-hitting journalism.
But that isn’t true when it comes to Acorns’ publication, Grow.
Grow goes a step beyond what you might consider a blog. In fact, it more resembles a digital magazine than a B2B blog.
They aren’t just posting industry insights and re-hashing the same old tips and tricks that you would find in most FinTech content. They are storytelling from a journalistic approach.
They analyze current events. They interview huge stars like Kevin Durant and Ashton Kutcher. They tell real-world stories that their audience can relate to. All of that, with the professional polish of a professional digital magazine.
Acorns’ Grow is an excellent example of what high-level content marketing can look like. While this standard isn’t attainable for every business, one look at that should make any founder re-think what content marketing could (and should) be.
Think Outside the Box
Content marketing is all about offering real value to your audience and ideal prospects. Value that they probably won’t find on your average listicle blog post.
We challenge any fintech companies to find new, innovative ways to deliver and create content for their audience.
Don’t be afraid to try new things. You’ll find that going the extra mile, or presenting your content in an interesting way goes a long ways toward generating traction.