Updated: Apr 14
Have you ever wondered what makes a successful fintech marketing strategy? In our "How they did it" series, we look at how some of the most successful and exciting fintechs in the world have approached marketing in their early days. Here's the story of how Revolut, one of UK's first fintech unicorns, gained 6,000 customers in just 3 months with £0 marketing budget.
With its bright blue and hot pink colours and original sliding pack, Revolut’s card was designed to make a statement and get people sharing.
Customer is the KING
Similar to other fintech startups, Revolut are aiming to be very transparent and open about their strategic moves and decisions. So, they are sharing a lot of company insights on their blog. This is a great marketing tactic, not only for boosting content and SEO, but also for increasing the brand’s trustworthiness and customer loyalty.
In one of their posts, Revolut are describing in much detail how they managed to get 16,000 business accounts in just 3 months with £0 marketing budget. And essentially, the secret to this enormous success is their unique product offering and customer-centric marketing
According to Revolut, you don’t need big marketing budgets, but ‘a kick-ass app that has virality written all over it’. So, how did they do it?
Build the best product and solve a real user problem
For a start, Revolut organised a number of focus groups with small and medium businesses from across the UK and Europe (their targeted consumer segments) and identified 5 key flawed business banking areas, where they could potentially make a difference. One of the biggest issues facing SMEs was the inefficiency and slowness of the existing banking platforms in the market.
So, that’s when they realised that the best way to make their product offering extremely attractive and marketable was to focus on building a state-of-the-art platform from the ground up with design, functionality and speed at its core.
Revolut’s main principle is that if they build products which are solving real customers’ problems while saving them time and money, signing them up to their offering would be simple.
Make the product attractive and sharable, and create unique buying experience
Revolut created unique buying experience for their customers by providing very distinctive and innovative product packaging. With its blue and pinkish colour and original sliding pack, their flagship card was designed to make a statement and get people sharing. Here is one of the first unpackaging videos by a customer on Twitter.
Following the success of their initial card, Revolut have taken the same approach to marketing their subsequent products - Revolut Premium Card and the most recent Revolut Metal Card. The Metal card, as you can probably imagine, is made by steel and weighs 3 times as much as a standard plastic card, creating exclusivity and targeting their premium client base. But the real appeal of Revolut’s new offering is again based on the unique functionality of the product which provides cashback in flat and crypto currencies.
Revolut launched a merch line of branded products incl. t-shirts, hats, hoodies, etc. to turn clients into fans.
Provide simple and hassle-free onboarding process
What’s the most annoying aspect of signing up for a new online service? Surely that would be all those data fields you need to complete and the amount of information you need to share. So, one of the best ways to attract and secure new user sign ups is to offer a simple and hasslefree onboarding process. To do this, Revolut focused on eliminating all unnecessary touch points and creating a quick sign-on with minimum data gathering. Thus, users were encouraged to try the product without too much engagement.
Turn clients into fans and let them be your best salesmen
Similar to Monzo’s strategy, Revolut are openly asking their customers to get involved in different aspects of the company’s development; i.e customers are asked to suggest and name future products, provide feedback on existing offerings, join open BETA groups and Live Q&A sessions and attend community meet-ups.
In this way they are aiming to build long-term relationship with their clients and ultimately convert them into loyal brand ambassadors and their best salesmen. A great example of this is their direct email campaign which involved sending emails to their customers and asking them to help getting to 1m users by promoting and sharing their favourite brand’s services to their friends on social media.
Furthermore, Revolut are even planning to introduce a merch line including branded t-shirts, hoodies and stickers that will be available to purchase online. While this might sound very unusual for a banking business, it is certainly a good way to turn your customers into fans and vice versa.
Revolut was founded in 2015 in London as a free foreign exchange card. In just 3 years, the company has become one of the few UK fintechs to earn a unicorn status, with valuation of $1.7b. It has acquired more than 2m customers and has processed more than £15b-worth of transactions.