Anyone who works in FinTech knows that disruption is at the core of the industry. However, our research shows that disruption alone is no longer enough to be successful – it must be relevant disruption.

Financial technology (FinTech) companies need to become customer obsessed to learn what products or services their consumers really want, then deliver that in new, valuable ways. That is relevant disruption.

What Makes a FinTech Business Successful?

Our recent report Success in FinTech: Are Most Getting It Wrong? identified some good news for the industry – most FinTech leaders do know how important it is to focus on the customer. However, when it comes to execution, investment in the customer seems to get pushed aside.

During Prophet’s session at the 2017 Innovate Finance Global Summit we spoke with Jamie Campbell, Head of Customer Experience at BudFinancial, about the need for relevant disruption.

He said, “Know the customer very well and know what they want. Finding the most effective way to distribute [your product] is the next step in that equation.” This isn’t to say that technology is any less important to a FinTech business, but in order to be successful, you must look at the wider picture.

At the same session, Manuel Silva Martinez, Partner at Santander InnoVentures, said that when they’re looking for FinTech companies to invest in, it’s important the business has considered why someone might pay for that particular product or service. Yes, it might meet a consumer need, but is it important enough to the consumer that they’ll part with money to use it?

3 Principles to Become a Successful FinTech Company

So what do FinTech companies need to do to ensure they are relevant to consumers’ lives? Our research showed that it boils down to three simple things:

1. Weave the customer into everything you do

The customer should be at the heart of everything you do, from the market research through to delivery of the product. Every single step needs to link straight back to your customer to ensure you’re delivering the product they truly need. This is a trait we commonly see in the most relevant global brands, such as Netflix. This is a brand that is undeniably customer obsessed, and continues to innovate in this way.

2. Ensure pragmatic execution

You have the deliver the right product in the right way from the very beginning – don’t let yourself get stuck in a state of perpetual beta. Being pragmatic not only builds trust with your customers, but it helps your brand to remain customer obsessed, stay inspired and build a culture of innovation.

3. Pursue relevant disruption

By placing emphasis on both what the customer wants and how to deliver it to them in the most efficient way, your FinTech is able to pursue relevant disruption. One brand we’ve seen establish themselves in this way is PayPal. They addressed a real customer need and seamlessly delivered an experience to solve this. This is relevant disruption.

Final Thoughts

As the industry moves forwards, it’s imperative that FinTech ventures keep the customer and relevant disruption top of mind.

You can download our full report, Success in FinTech: Are Most Getting It Wrong?, to find out what you need to do next to achieve relevant disruption in the world of FinTech.