Financial technology is caught in a struggle between evolution and revolution. The revolution is noisy. These are upstart firms that declare loudly that they will overturn the existing system, delivering unprecedented benefits at a fraction of the cost. Bold leaders wind up on print and digital magazine covers, with pledges about future size and value. They dominate the conversation. But what of the evolution? By this we mean the hundreds of companies who are actually holding together the world financial system, some of whom date back thirty or forty years, and including a dozen or so in the S&P500. Some of these are specialist providers in insurance and fixed income, others are integrated providers of software and services with thousands and thousands of professionals. Such firms are all transforming their businesses, but often face greater challenges in communicating their innovation.
The marketing departments at these firms are tasked with breaking through a crowded market when others are sucking up so much oxygen. They need to embrace traditionally consumer forms of distribution and communication, while maximising their content projection and editorial coverage in an environment where media outlets are often shrinking and distracted. Frequently these marketers must do more – and deliver better results – with constrained resource. We at Cognito hear nearly every day about these issues. It’s the focus of our work to partner with clients and help try and solve these knotty problems. But we wanted to step back and see what trends were most pressing as we head into the New Year.
To do this, we conducted a survey of senior marketing professionals in financial technology firms. The majority of these are at what the industry standard IDC 100 ranking would describe as “financial technology” or capital markets infrastructure, either as part or all of their mandate.
What we heard back both confirmed and expanded our assumptions about the market. Here we’re sorted the takeaways from the report into eight themes. Read on to see how communications is increasingly seen as an engine for strategic growth, the growing demands around ESG and the challenge of attracting talent. The survey results get granular around marketing priorities, budgets, channels, content and measurement. We also offer analysis about what each of these trends mean for developing and executing marketing and communications strategy.
In an increasingly complex and disruptive multi-stakeholder world, financial technology leaders recognize that the integrity of their corporate brand matters now more than ever. We are hopeful that our respondents’ honest perspectives will provide ample insights for other leaders around the world.
Find out more and read the full report here.