By Jamie Field, MD, TopLine Film
It’s been a tough time for the UK fintech industry. First, Investec pulled the plug on Click & Invest (its robo-advice venture) and, a week later, Loot went into administration. Hendrik du Toit, the co-chief executive of Investec, later said of the fintech industry as a whole: “to think you can create a parallel financial sector to the existing one is a fallacy.”
It seems that the fintech industry is fighting an uphill battle. Not only are they failing to turn a profit (even leading digital banks such as Monzo and Revolut remain at a loss) but they’re also failing to win the general public’s trust. More than eight out of ten people in Britain (83 percent) are ‘unsure’ of fintech, according to a survey of 2,000 UK consumers commissioned by TopLine Comms.
Just under a third (27 percent) cited a lack of understanding around how fintech companies work and the services they provide as the primary reason for trusting traditional banks more. And despite calls for the death of the high street, this was followed by the absence of physical locations, in which they could seek out help (22 percent). More than half (53 percent) stated that the ability of fintechs to guarantee the safety of their money would be key in influencing their trust.
Eighty percent of those surveyed said they didn’t use the services of any new digital banking and finance companies and just under two thirds (61 percent) said they would only feel comfortable depositing up to £500 of their own money in a mobile only bank account. By comparison, nine out of ten people (87 percent) said that they trust that their money is safe with their current bank.
It seems that the fintech industry is having something of a communication problem. As a corporate video production company, we’ve worked on over fifty fintech productions, so we know that marketing plays an important role in communicating these complex ideas. But many fintech companies get it wrong. They want to be seen as trailblazers. However, when you’re up against institutions that have been around for hundreds of years (Lloyds Bank was founded in 1765), you need to strip it back and build a relationship on more solid foundations.
As a general rule, fintech companies that are looking to make a promotional film should:
– Build a story. As mentioned, many fintech companies want to build a story about their journey to the market – how they’re disrupting the payments landscape and why their technology is superior. What they often miss is the most crucial part of the story – what their product does for their customer. When you’re trying to convince people to move away from banks they have likely used all their life, you’re going to need to make the company story more about how the product makes their lives a little bit easier.
– Give your communications a logical structure. In order to tell the customer-focused story, we like to use the “Pain, Claim, Gain, Proof” structure. It’s fairly self-explanatory, but in a nutshell:
Pain – Explain the customer’s current problem.
Claim – Explain how the company solves said problem.
Gain – Explain how the customer benefits from the company’s solution.
Proof – Provide evidence of the company’s work.
We can’t take the credit for this structure as we didn’t invent it. But it’s a good framework that we recommend frequently to help keep your story on track.
– Set the right tone. As mentioned, customers need to be at the centre of your story, and that means that the tone should be set to cater to them. The tone should always come back to the key message that the technology is designed for them. They don’t need to hear about why you think high-street banks are bad; they just need to know what you can do for them.
The fintech industry has a lot to give. The difference will be whether the major players can win the public’s trust.