It’s clear that emerging Fintech and Insuretech entrants are shaking up financial services. Across the board – from large to small-scale companies – we’re observing an accelerated need for more digitally fluent marketing organizations to tackle new challenges in an evolving market.

To understand the challenges and priorities impacting the insurance and banking industries today, we turned to Prophet’s digital analyst group Altimeter who surveyed 68 global financial services executives as part of their industry-wide 2019 State of Digital Marketing report that spoke to over 500 executives in North America, Europe and China.

The report surfaced three primary digital marketing insights specific to where financial services executives are betting their marketing investments to address business challenges:

  1. Lead generation and customer experience are the
    top digital marketing priorities.
  2. Scaling marketing innovation, the right talent and proving impact
    are the greatest challenges.
  3. Data analysis, marketing automation and UX design are the
    most sought after skills.

Let’s dive into the results.

1. Lead generation and customer experience are the top digital marketing priorities.

Lead generation and customer experience came out on top (see Figure 1) – ranked higher than brand awareness and brand health – a top priority across other industries.

To measure digital marketing success, financial services companies are placing greater emphasis on customer loyalty/customer lifetime value (CLTV) – even before direct revenue (see Figure 2).

We see these forces working within financial services companies who are investing more to acquire customers through digital demand-building activities. Specifically, with the increases in the promotion of banking, investment and insurance products going more digitally direct-to-consumer. We also see loyalty as a rising metric to diagnose and resolve potential attrition challenges before confronted.

2. Scaling marketing innovation, the right talent and proving impact are the greatest challenges.

Financial services marketing organizations are navigating several challenges with their focus on lead generation and CX development, particularly around scaling, hiring and proving business impact (see Figure 3).

In addition, we learn that compared to other industries, financial services companies are experiencing a much greater challenge in seeing a return on investment for their marketing technology spend with 32 percent saying that it took a long time before they saw any return. Consequently, it is now considered to be their top Martech challenge.

3. Data analysis, marketing automation and UX design are the most sought after skills.

Financial services companies are now focused on building capabilities in data analysis, marketing automation, and user experience design (see Figure 4) to enable the scaling of marketing innovation across the full enterprise and ultimately to prove business impact.

Financial services companies as a consequence are finding the need for capabilities to apply digital marketing in new ways previously not considered.

These evolving digital marketing priorities are making way for the future

What’s clear from the findings of Altimeter’s 2019 State of Digital Marketing report is that as financial services companies place greater emphasis on driving customer acquisition and shaping customer experiences, marketing must bring in new capabilities formally nascent within the organization, invest in the right marketing technology, and prove business impact on a small – yet scalable – way.

At Prophet, we help our clients drive uncommon growth through transformation. We work with leaders across the insurance and banking categories to understand where to play and how to win to unlock the full potential of the brand and customer relationships. Learn more with our guide to digital marketing excellence here or get in touch today. 

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