Updated: Jan 11, 2022
The leading global BaaS platform, Railsbank, goes through a complete rebrand in its mission to establish a new market category of “embedded finance experiences”. To learn more about the company’s bold move, we spoke to Joanne Nelson, Global VP Marketing at Railsbank.
Railsbank, the leading global BaaS platform, has gone through a complete rebrand to support its new strategic direction to the future of embedded finance. The UK-based challenger, founded in 2016 with global operations across the UK and Europe, APAC and the US, is shifting away from the traditional bank positioning and going on a mission to set the global standard for digital finance experiences that customers love.
Nigel Verdon, CEO and co-founder of Railsbank said: “People don’t buy a car loan, they buy a car. Consumer brands understand what banks and fintech never could: finance is not about the product, it is part of an experience.”
“Instead of thinking in terms of delivering banking or cards, Railsbank is empowering brands to build next-level financial experiences they always imagined, at a pace previously unimaginable. Embedded Finance Experiences are the future of finance.”
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The new Railsbank brand: A shift from traditional banking services to unique embedded finance experiences
The first step in achieving Railsbank’s new mission was the launch of new brand identity and positioning. A brand-new challenger proposition deserves a corresponding challenger identity. The company’s old soft logo is thus replaced with a bold and edgy one, whilst the traditional, neutral colours of dark pastel green and coral are taken over by bright, neon pink-purple-ish gradients. To highlight the customer-centricity of its new value proposition, Railsbank’s old safe and boring graphic visuals are replaced with vibrant and energetic imagery of real people of different ages, lifestyles and backgrounds.
In addition to a new logo and brand toolkit, Railsbank also introduced a new website with a modern and sleek look that one would expect from a creative company rather than a financial organisation.
For the design of the new brand vision and identity, the company appointed the London-based creative agency, Conran Design Group. Commenting on the project, the Conran team said:
“Railsbank have a game-changing platform, they are bold, expert and adventurous. This really drove the vibrant and agile qualities of the brand toolkit; a positive energy which illuminates their endless possibility and reflects how they are responsive to customer needs, actively transforming the very fabric of embedded finance experiences. We wanted an identity to cut through and communicate the novelty of the category. This meant we avoided anything that felt familiar and safe, actively pushing towards something that felt on the right side of the edge.”
Railsbank’s rebranding process: Behind the scenes
To get a behind the scenes overview of Railsbank’s rebranding process, we spoke to Joanne Nelson, Global VP Marketing at Railsbank. According to Joanne, the biggest challenge her team faced was: “How to break away from the typical codes of finance and communicate a new category that does not yet fully exist, in a way that people would understand.” To tackle this, they sought inspiration outside of the finance world, looking at films, art, and pop culture instead.
The next hurdle on their course was how to translate “the transformational effect on the consumer experience when the very nature of being embedded means that you are invisible”. This was solved by “hinting at the fabric of the experience, and suggesting a sense of movement and positive transformation occurring.”
A massive brand change like this doesn’t usually happen without a consequence and communication is key to its success - especially with the company’s existing customer base. To navigate this, the team “wrote personally to all our customers to advise them we had been rethinking how to help our customers go beyond the financial transaction, to use finance as an experience and a strategic tool. We hoped they would find our new brand adventurous, challenging and reflect how we aspire to partner and co-create with them. We also wanted to assure them of our continued support to partner on a journey.”
In terms of the actual brand design, the Conran team took a creative stimulus approach:
“We integrated creative stimulus early on in the process in order to gauge appetite and ambition with the leadership team as soon as we could. This involved including provocative stimulus in mood boards to get a sense of how far we wanted to push the new brand. This and their unique positioning ‘Your partner for embedding financial experiences’ provided strong foundations to build the creative.”
What’s next for Railsbank?
About Railsbank’s future plans, Joanne shared:
“The opportunity for embedded finance is moving to any organisation or brand that wants to have a deeper and more engaging relationship with their consumer and create a less frictionless experience. Railsbank is now talking to organisations across many different sectors who have a strong desire to explore these new opportunities that they did not think were previously possible.”
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About Joanne Nelson: Joanne is VP of Global Marketing at Railsbank. Prior to this, Joanne had been VP of Marketing at Logicalis, heading up the UK marketing department and taking responsibility for the corporate marketing function of the Logicalis Group.
Joanne has over 20 years of ICT marketing experience. She previously worked at Ericsson Enterprise, and then its spinoff, Damovo, where she was VP Marketing & Communications, across the Group. She had sole responsibility for re-branding the multi-million dollar global Communications Provider (then ranked 36th top global brand, Interbrand, Citigroup, August 2001) and managing the global corporate marketing function across 20 markets worldwide.