Content Marketing

Content Marketing for Financial Institutions: 5 Examples of Content Done Well

Flashier B2C brands often muscle their way to the center of the marketing stage, showing off products and services that people love shopping for. But finance content doesn’t have to be far from the excitement—after all, it takes budgeting know-how to afford those pricey shoes.

Believe it or not, financial content for a bank can be fertile ground for creativity. If you’re working on content marketing for financial institutions, you’ve been asked to fulfill a particularly bright promise: Not only do you need to establish a trusting relationship with your audience, but you need to develop a voice entertaining enough to make your bank stand out.

After all, the actual content of bank marketing stays largely the same from institution to institution—there are finite ways to approach writing about, say, a checking account or a credit card. But just like bottled water, it’s the packaging that counts.

Here are some of our favorite examples of branded content marketing from banks and financial institutions in the last couple of years.

MD Financial’s Medical School Cost Calculator

MD Financial’s goal is even more specific than the goal of most financial companies; they aim their content at medical professionals and their families and focus specifically on the financial challenges faced by this demographic.

That’s why the brand’s med school calculator is such an incredible tool. By targeting a young audience that hasn’t yet committed to medical school, they initiate a trusting relationship early. After all, if a pre-med student uses an MD Financial calculator to pick a med school, they’re way more likely to consult relevant branded content as they grow in their career.

MD Financial’s Medical School Cost Calculator

Keep the marketers’ Rule of 7 in mind when you create content for an audience that you hope will stick with your brand their entire careers. On average, it takes a consumer seven points of contact to feel they have a relationship with a brand. The earlier you can seed that first memory of value, the faster you’ll reach customer loyalty.

Citi Entertainment

When it comes to placing a brand name in unexpected situations, Citi is the reigning queen. Because of Citibike, you can’t rent a bicycle in most cities without thinking of the bank; meanwhile, if you want first dips on hot concert tickets, you better have the Citi Entertainment program page bookmarked.

The bank’s entertainment access program links its credit card in consumers’ minds with aspirational and fun purchases like concerts. If you’re a Citi person, the music content suggests, you’re also the kind of person who spends disposable income on live music. You’re not just financially literate; you’re fun-loving, young, and hip.

While anyone can view Citi Entertainment content, you have to have a Citi card to make a purchase. While deciding whether to pull the trigger and convert, you can follow Citi Entertainment’s content via email newsletter or on social media. All the content distributed through those channels hammers home the same point: cool people simply bank with Citi.

It’s the bank’s long-term commitment to a younger audience, pop culture, and entertainment that makes Citi’s access program one of the best pieces of branded content marketing for financial institutions.

Mastercard’s #PricelessToMe Campaign

Mastercard celebrated the 25th anniversary of its “Priceless” branding in 2023, and all evidence suggests we’ll be hearing more of the slogan for decades to come. One place you may not have expected to see this branded content in action? The Australian Open.

Here’s where the campaign gets interesting—rather than simply run an ad on their latest products, Mastercard wanted to shine a light on Australia’s growing culture of inclusivity. With the help of well-known Australian athletes with disabilities, Mastercard positioned itself as the credit card distributor that connects people and businesses.

The Australian Open #PricelessToMe campaign wasn’t just a commercial. Instead, the company built multiple experiential activations (complete with a game of tennis simulated from the perspective of a player with a vision impairment), funded a Blind Spots Australia grant, and launched a WebAR competition that encouraged spectators to complete a series of challenges.

They didn’t skimp on the content, either. Mastercard created a 3D spatial audio experience for live sports, which allowed blind and low-vision audiences to experience the Australian Open through the radio.

Branded content marketing for financial institutions doesn’t always have to mean posting a boring blog. Instead, brainstorm ideas that tie your content back to your core message.

Deloitte’s Annual Back to School Survey

Now, Deloitte isn’t a bank, but it’s one of the Big Four accounting organizations and financial advisory firms. They help high-earning movers and shakers manage their wealth—right? At least, that’s the identity you might gather from Googling their brand name. If you enter Deloitte’s orbit by way of financial content marketing—as most will—you’re likely to conclude that Deloitte has a unique and realistic handle on what affects the finances of regular folks.

Take the brand’s annual back-to-school report, for example. Each year, Deloitte surveys American families about the materials they find themselves buying for kids every time autumn rolls around, and they present their findings in a cool infographic. It’s not just about new clothes either; Deloitte breaks the data down to show how many families shop brick and mortar vs online, and the brand unveils customer “dealbreakers,” research methods, and typical shopping cadences week to week.

Although they’re not a B2C company focusing on school supplies, Deloitte knows the subject concerns their target audience. That display of empathy is why the brand belongs on our list of stand-out finance content marketing campaigns.

Current’s Partnership with MrBeast

What does Current, a fintech company, and MrBeast have in common? If you answered “money,” that’s only partially correct—both have mastered the art of capturing public attention through unconventional tactics.

To a layperson, it might seem ironic that Current would sponsor a MrBeast video titled “First to Rob Bank Wins $100,000,” but hey, it worked. In less than 24 hours after posting, the video became the top trending video on YouTube, generating over 58 million views, 120,000 comments, and 2.4 million likes. Current saw a 700% increase in its daily Current Pay requests and skyrocketed to number five in the App Store finance apps category.

Moral of the story? While you can build a financial content engine from scratch, consider turbocharging your efforts by finding influencers and content creators aligned with what you do. You might not have bagfuls of millions to give away, but good, creative content will always attract an audience.

How to Win at Content Marketing for Financial Institutions

If you’re in charge of branded content marketing for financial institutions, you can count on a few universal truths as you ideate new campaigns. Yes, your content should be educational and include a specific CTA that maps against your company’s goals, but it should also enhance the brand’s unique position.

Is your brand committed to flashy, fun, poignant moments with artists like Citi, or is it cognizant of social issues like Mastercard? Your content should answer that question in a fluid, natural way, and be aimed at your target audience personas.

Although any great financial content marketing strategy should include educational tools like fact sheets, e-books, and whitepapers, you should study the more ambitious campaigns of those marketers who have come before you.

There’s nothing stopping today’s banks and financial institutions from getting involved with charitable giving, political statements, or entertainment events—in fact, you’re far better off if you can leverage what your consumers care about and enjoy.

Ask The Content Strategist: FAQs

Q: What are notable trends or emerging strategies in content marketing specific to the financial industry?

Notable trends for financial content marketing include personalized content experiences, interactive formats like quizzes or calculators, and leveraging user-generated content for authenticity and engagement. Download our 2024 Finance Content Trends Report for more insights!

Q: Given the competitive landscape and increasing consumer expectations, what strategies can financial institutions employ to differentiate their content and stand out in the market?

To stand out in the market, financial institutions can focus on niche segments, tell compelling stories that resonate with their target audience, and embrace innovative content formats such as podcasts or live video streams.

Q: What challenges might arise from implementing similar strategies in finance, and how can they be managed?

Implementing storytelling into B2B content programs has shown to be an effective strategy for connecting with readers. Let the funnel be your guide!

We’re here to help you navigate financial content marketing—to learn more, request a demo and chat with our sales team.

Image by Victoruler

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