Financial brands reveal engagement strategies

Brands such as The Co-operative Financial Services, HSBC and Barclays revealed at the Marketing Week 1-2-1 Financial Services Summit last month the strategies they have implemented to increase emotional engagement with their audiences.


The Co-operative Financial Services business leader for brand and marketing Louise Fowler stated: “Not everything that occurred during the recession was down to us, but there are things we could have done better. It’s in our power to change some of these things and tell consumers that we are interested in them.”

Fowler also shared statistics from The Co-operative Financial Services Brand Positioning Study last year, showing that 56% of consumers think financial services companies are responsible for the economic downturn.

But to address these negative feelings, Fowler revealed that in the past year, overdraft charges have been halved, and an insurance policy specifically for young drivers has been introduced.

HSBC’s head of marketing and client experience for global banking and markets, Sarajit Mitra, highlighted how the bank has used emotional scoring in individual branches in Brazil, New York and Hong Kong to improve customer service. Customers were asked to rate how they felt emotionally – such as angry, disgusted, happy or surprised – rather than give a score out of 10.

As feedback was gathered week to week, staff became more emotionally driven to improve their service levels.

“This is one of the first steps we have taken to improve our understanding of the emotional effects of service on our customers,” Mitra said.

Barclays’ associate director for insight and analysis James Wycherley discussed leveraging insights from the bank’s customer base to develop PR angles to feed news stories into the press.

For example, Barclays’s connection to Premier League football has seen it generate media interest around revealing the spending patterns of various teams’ supporters, such as how much Manchester United fans spend on fuel.

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