Are challenger banks transforming the lending market or just providing digital makeup?

STEVE MORGAN | March 4, 2020

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The short answer is yes…. sometimes to both. However, there is a huge change underway and enough evidence to suggest that customer and competitive pressure alone will drive more change, even without further regulatory updates. Globally, and in the UK, margins in the lending market are feeling the pressure. Slow credit growth (currently at 2.5% in the UK), and low interest rates are the primary drivers. This has fueled competition, especially for lending products with higher margins, such as mortgages.

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Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Limited

Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Limited is a banking company licensed under Section 22 (1) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 to carry on small finance bank business. It is also a wholly owned subsidiary of Ujjivan Financial Services Ltd. The bank has commenced its operations with effect from February 1, 2017.

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THE DIGITAL TIPPING POINT IN FINANCIAL SERVICES

Article | May 27, 2021

There is a huge transformation underway in the financial services industry. Over the past year – as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic – clients have been forced to take on more of an active role in monitoring and planning for financial uncertainty. But the big change is that these clients have become much more emotionally invested in their organisations’ financial wellbeing. In a time where everything is digital first, it’s no surprise that many clients want to be able to search for answers themselves, escalate issues quickly and receive the support they need to better navigate the uncertain economic landscape, at speed. Of course, as clients demand a smoother and more fulfilling experience, we’re seeing a shift in how financial services companies manage their business model for success in the long term. Whilst, stereotypically, the financial services industry has been considered ‘old school’, and in many cases still lags behind other industries in the digital transformation race, the pandemic is proof in point that relying on legacy systems is just not an option for the sector anymore. Thriving during turbulent times The good news is that many organisations in the sector are already rising to the challenge, adjusting their products and services to meet the needs of customers who might have been struggling through the pandemic themselves. Siemens Financial, a division of Europe’s largest manufacturing company, for example, moved quickly to scale their service to meet surges in customer needs. The financial arm provides B2B financing solutions to a large client base covering both small businesses and large corporations. When the pandemic struck, while the company was quickly inundated with requests for support, they had the right mindset and tools already in place to keep things running smoothly. At the onset of the pandemic, the organisation witnessed a 30 percent increase in customer support ticket volumes. Like with all other businesses operating in the service industry, the team were challenged with managing a huge influx in client requests, whilst maintaining their core offering of delivering a personal service to every client. Based on a data-driven decision, the team moved its entire operation online, within 48 hours. In doing so, they were able to respond to new tickets during the peak of the pandemic within just six to seven hours, plus decrease resolution time from 24 hours to little more than eight. What’s more, they quickly moved the entire team to a remote working set up. Frictionless digital services are paramount to remaining resilient in the face of COVID-19. Of course, for all organisations, this means saying goodbye to those spreadsheets used to track customer data and instead, embracing custom built support solutions providing real-time insights to support businesses in making decisions, at speed. Investing now, for a successful future However, for organisations who have more traditionally operated off of old or outdated legacy systems, it can be hard for them to visualise what a more digital way of operating could look like in practice. As you think about the road to recovery, it might therefore be worth considering where to invest first for the best return. For example, according to the Zendesk Customer Experience Trends Report 2021, 67 per cent of customers are willing to spend more at a company providing them with a good experience. Whilst it may feel like the thriving organisations are the ones investing lots of money into CX technology, it’s clear that investment - or lack thereof - is being felt by customers too. We’ve reached the digital tipping point - where holding at the status quo will actually put companies further and further behind. It’s about equipping your employees with the right technology, at the right time. We saw that Siemens Financial could keep track of customer conversations remotely, with minimal disruption. This is because the flexible platform they used to keep track of the customer experience provided their service agents with a 360 view of all clients’ prior interactions with the team. For example, whether they’ve used WhatsApp, the phone, or email to communicate with the brand, for customer experience agents using an omnichannel platform, the conversation looks the same.

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Coronavirus — How Fintech Helps

Article | March 30, 2020

The effects of Coronavirus on humanity, and what it is doing to the health and well-being of those around us, is very clear. We see the devastating effect it is having on people’s lives, and the level of fear is growing each day. I do not wish to add to this with another article based on the risks posed to people if they go outside. For me, it is important to discuss ways in which life can be improved during this moment, and I hope to do just that. However, before I do, I would like to extend wishes of health, peace of mind, and give my thoughts and prayers to those who are dealing with the difficulties we are all facing together as human beings.

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Trending Demand Generation Strategies to Drive FinTech Growth

Article | March 11, 2021

Once referred to as an emerging market, FinTech is a young market with regard to time and investment. It is also an independent market due to its changing trends and regulations. FinTech brands have gained enough capital to grow and expand over the years. The increasing number of smartphone users and affordable internet connections suggest a paradigm shift in the nature of banking with transactions going mobile-first. Raising dependency on mobile banking, online payment, and mobile wallets are cascading from luxury to basic requirements, making it one of the top reasons for both challenges and growth opportunities in the FinTech market. Besides, the FinTech market also includes businesses that provide AI solutions and work on risk & compliance management that is enabling companies to run smoothly even after the pandemic. Other winning sectors in the FinTech market are companies engaged in loans and insurance which are likely to do well. However, driving Fintech demand remains a key challenge for most companies in a fast-changing and evolving marketplace. By the end of this article, you'll be able to apply FinTech lead generation strategies to drive growth for lead generation for FinTech companies. Balancing Finance & Technology Technological advancement is dominating almost every market. Finance technology is emerging as an enabler for various industries helping and supporting finance teams to balance and manage their daily activities, financial close, collaboration, and documentation providing more visibility to transactions. FinTech brands invest in developing frictionless and seamless e-banking solutions and other financial and money management services. The FinServ market is witnessing a change in simplified access, embedded financial services, and financial inclusion. Developing a new product range allows FinTech brands to please investors to gain more funding and overcome other traditional investment barriers. Proven Demand Generation Strategies for FinTech If you are running a FinTech company, then FinTech marketing is all that's on your mind, particularly when the traditional banking companies are making up with the emergent technologies, best-in-class user experience, and expectations. Here are the top strategies for FinTech demand generation. Go mobile with your marketing initiatives In the 21st century, everything is on mobile. If you aren't considering a marketing initiative around this handheld device, you're missing out on one of the most effective ways to connect with the target audience. According to a recent study, on average, an individual spends 5hrs a day on a mobile device, and the time spent on mobile apps has skyrocketed a massive 69% from 2016. More than 50% of mobile phone users prefer online searching before buying anything. B2B FinTech companies need to focus on mobile phone users to get the most out of their marketing campaigns and reach their target audience. Create valuable content FinTech content must first address what problem it intends to solve, how it will solve, what are the benefits, what is its advantage over legacy processes, how it adds value, saves time and costs, drives growth, or simplifies processes. To create valuable FinTech content, you need to consider the following: • Analyze your target audience • Content competitive analyses • Note down your content goal, whether it's for awareness, engagement, or conversion stage. Segmented content hub - blog, white papers, case studies, eBooks, press releases, etc. Create a content hub or digital library that houses all your articles, blogs, case studies, whitepapers, eBooks, press releases, etc. this is an effective way to engage the target audience and generate demand. Ensure that your content plan is organized so that you cater to the requirements of all the platforms and audiences. While you focus on creating content on trending topics, you also need to ensure that you create evergreen content. Create a content calendar for the year. This will help you plan the theme you are going to cover each month for your target customers to drive demand in a phased manner. Create matchless video content to generate demand Video content is the most potent form of content marketing. According to a survey, around 87% of marketers use video for FinTech lead generation. Videos are used in different ways to generate demand. Video marketing does not always mean creating a new video, but leveraging or repurposing an existing one, judging your investment, and creating a new video, if required. The key idea of video marketing is to get a slice of the market which is being influenced by the evolving taste of content consumption by consumers. Getting your content out in the most trending format will help you get noticed in the clutter, build brand awareness, and also convey your message to your target audience. Adding a form or a call-to-action at the end of the video gets you qualified leads. Some of the commonly applied video marketing strategies include: • Use video in landing pages • Place video along with a form or other call-to-action button. • Optimize video to various social media formats. • Create a call-to-action button at the beginning or in-between the video; this can be a simple subscription invitation. • Video testimony is an excellent form of video marketing that influences and builds a better relationship with your customers. Social media trends for FinTech Social media platforms are no longer considered a place where people connect and communicate in real-time. FinTech can be a challenging market to promote on social media. Social media cannot be a one-size fit for all, but it has amazing advantages over traditional marketing channels. Be a thought leader FinTech marketing is social media marketing. By domain experts in banking, finance, and insurance. It is a platform handled by individuals who are market leaders, contributors, or influencers. Identify the most effective platform for your niche & promote your content on it Identify your audience and promote your content on the most effective and relevant platform to reach your niche audience. Rather than being all over the place, you can choose to stay on one relevant platform to promote your business. Get influencers to influence Getting market influencers to your site can be a great way to increase on-page engagement. Promoting guest articles or interviews by market leaders to share their knowledge and experience in the FinTech or FinServ market. Other useful ways to get influencers to your page include promoting a product/service, sponsored review, social media mention, running a contest on influencers page, getting influencer quotes on brand, creating a joint event, and promoting influencer content on your page. Interact with your customers/end-users Ensure that no comments or queries are unanswered or unattended. There are higher chances of them being your potential customers. Host events (online & offline) Hosting events both online and offline is a great way to reach your target audience. Events can be of different types – educational, promotional, announcement, launches, etc. Hosting such an event is an excellent idea to interact with your target audience. Ensure that you are listening/reading their comments to give them appropriate feedback. Also, apply their valuable suggestions whenever possible. Collect data to channelize FinTech demand generation campaigns In this data-driven world, it's easy to collect information about your customers. Effective FinTech demand generation starts with data. Make utmost use of the data and insights you gain from your research. CRM and analytics platform, carry out a detailed analysis into your users to better understand your audience's needs, build a FinTech lead generation campaign, and optimize your content, landing pages, CTAs, emailers, etc. High-performing websites and effective FinTech lead generation strategies focus on addressing and solving user needs. These insights will also help you get the most ROI from your PPC campaign and paid activities on social media platforms. Final Thoughts Applying these strategies for demand generation will help you attain the desired business growth. These days, the FinTech market has overcome common challenges such as varying regulatory and compliance laws, trust issues, cyberthreats, lack of support from government bodies, industry-related complexities, etc. Lag in digital banking experience Uneven digital transformation globally in the banking industry is the key reason for the lag in the e-banking experience. A new focus on customer experience During this time of digitalization, focusing on customer experience is the best practice. Gaining customers' trust and loyalty is the most important factor that the FinTech market is looking forward to. Shift from digital to mobile-first The ever-increasing number of smartphone and internet users is among the top reasons why many markets shift from digital to mobile-first. Invest in new technologies FinTech brands need to develop new technologies and come up with new and innovative ideas to promote their products online and get the target audience to drive demand. Investment in fintech companies FAQs Q1. What are demand generation activities for FinTech? A1. As mentioned in the above blogs applying following demand generation activities for FinTech market: • Go mobile with your marketing initiatives • Create valuable content • Social media trends for FinTech • Host events (online & offline) • Collect data to channelize FinTech demand generation campaigns Q2. How do you create a demand generation plan for FinTech company? A2. Demand generation can be defined as a general practice to create need or interest in your product or service and converting passive audience into qualified leads. To begin with, you need to have clarity about your customer base and potential audience to define your potential buyer persona. Once you have your defined audience; make goals and create your funnel such as create an awareness content plan, lead generating content plan and conversion content plan. Set up the tools or online platforms where you are planning to promote this content. Invest in paid promotional activities and lastly measure your success. Q3. Why is demand generation important in FinTech? A3. Demand generation is a data-driven marketing strategy that is designed to nurture future goals. The most important factor of applying demand generation strategy is it helps in generating more revenue. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are demand generation activities for FinTech?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "As mentioned in the above blogs applying following demand generation activities for FinTech market: Go mobile with your marketing initiatives Create valuable content Social media trends for FinTech Host events (online & offline) Collect data to channelize FinTech demand generation campaigns " } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How do you create a demand generation plan for FinTech company?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Demand generation can be defined as a general practice to create need or interest in your product or service and converting passive audience into qualified leads. To begin with, you need to have clarity about your customer base and potential audience to define your potential buyer persona. Once you have your defined audience; make goals and create your funnel such as create an awareness content plan, lead generating content plan and conversion content plan. Set up the tools or online platforms where you are planning to promote this content. Invest in paid promotional activities and lastly measure your success." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is demand generation important in FinTech?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Demand generation is a data-driven marketing strategy that is designed to nurture future goals. The most important factor of applying demand generation strategy is it helps in generating more revenue." } }] }

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How Blockchain is Changing the Banking Industry

Article | June 28, 2021

How Blockchain is Changing Banking and Finance Industry We all have basic knowledge about Cryptocurrency and Blockchain technology, and many peoples understand its complex structures and its valuable benefits for the future. That's why many peoples believed that it's the future of currency exchange. Apart from Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Etherium, etc., Blockchain has the potential to use the existing technology up to its peak to exchange transaction information and data. With more security and easy to trace back previous transactions benefit, we can say it is the new age of Electronic currency to avoid human errors and frauds. Blockchain technology in Banking Around the many conspiracies and fake theories about Blockchain and Cryptocurrency, many organizations and even countries like Australia, China, Japan, and other developed nations embraced this Blockchain in Banking as a future of seamless exchange of transactions. Apart from that, its decentralized transactions are easy and more secure than we have today. Blockchain could change the current banking technology used by its admins to trace and track the record of every exchange of digital money to lessen the frauds and reduce the time and human efforts. Prominent players of the Bank and Finance Industry like the Bank Of America, JP Morgan Chase, Citi Bank, and other renowned players of finance sectors using Blockchain in banking to improve funds transfer between banking institutions globally and maintain every record of their history of transactions effectively. How Blockchain is helpful in Banking Blockchain technology is a decentralized ledger of transaction which enables the bank to keep track of all the transactions publicly and transparently. It provides a direct connection between the sender and receiver of payments. No intermediary and complete control of the transaction exists in between them. Because of this reason, it provides a way for financial services to work more specifically and without errors to make payments securitization more precisely. This makes Bitcoins that uses Blockchain technology a better option of investment. Benefits of Blockchain in Banking As you continue to read this article, you might have an idea about this new age technology's immense benefits in the finance sector. Let's take a look at how it can be more helpful in the upcoming future. Security: The primary concern of 21st century’s banks is their security. No one knows who will hack their systems and scatter with the money of people who trust the financial system. With Blockchain technology, security issues such as suspicious activities are easily tracked. It is hard to decode the encryption of the Blockchain and takes too much time because the data is not stored on one server but across a huge network of computers. These computers constantly check and verify the records and data. This feature allows a noteworthy use for Blockchain in banking. For a hacker, it is hard to breach many servers. Every transaction that gets recorded in a Blockchain ledger undergoes complicated sets of encryption interconnected with the next block, which results in an unaltered series of coded data "blocks," each dependent on a ledger series. That's why it is one of the best cyber-protection against hacks in this internet world. Fast transaction: If you want to transfer money to someone living in another country, you go to the bank and might have to stand in the long queue for your turn. Once you forward your request, it takes 5 to 10 days to credit the amount in the bank of the recipient. Blockchain can easily reduce such a long time-consuming process. It has the potential to complete the transaction within minutes, not in a day. It saves your valuable time, though. Easy to track and transparency: No doubt that it is a highly transparent and traceable system as compared to the traditional finance system. Every record of amount can be easily tracked with a digital recording system. It reduces the need for time-consuming and costly third-party verification tools. Also, it undoubtedly offers visibility into the transaction history within the banks' operations. Reduce fraud: It can reduce hacking, DDOS attacks, and other scams. Blockchain helps banks to identify their user's IDs and confirm their detail with digital Blockchain ID. It automatically reduces future frauds, which is the biggest concern of the banking system. How bank can use Blockchain: With Blockchain in banking, financial institutions would not need to depend on the network of custodial services and regulatory bodies like SWIFT. They can easily settle transactions directly on a public Blockchain. Here are few benefits of using the new-age technology. Verifying Digital Identity: Banks can't process online transactions without the verification of a person. This process can be done via face-to-face verification, logging in with passwords, or sending OTP on registered mobile numbers. Although, after the application of Blockchain technology, this process becomes more seamless and more secure due to its accurate data reading capability. Smart Contracts: It might be possible to automate the process of transaction, which costs time, added complexity, and delays the transactions using smart contracts. It is a contract with terms and agreements between the buyers and sellers' business. This computerized contract permits the trustworthy transaction completely free from any central authority or external enforcement mechanism. The new way to do business is here. Faster lending: Loan processing takes too much of the user’s valuable time. It can be reduced with Blockchain. This use of the technology is called Blockchain lending. Blockchain lending can give direct benefit to customers by reducing the growing costs. It provides lenders with a competitive offer and helps them do the transaction faster and without any security defect. Blockchain-based Smart Contracts ensure that loan seeker and lender agree viable and fair terms regarding proof of funds and payment planning for future installments. Blockchain technology has lots of advantages and revolutionary benefits to finance and banking institutions. Though, still, people are generally unaware of this technology and fear of adapting to it. This might cost us time to unify our currency and have a better future. Frequently Asked Questions: How is Blockchain used in finance? Blockchain technology can improve finance and lending services by lowering counterparty risk and shortening issuance and settlement periods. It enables: authenticated paperwork and KYC/AML data, reducing risk exposures and facilitating real-time financial document verification. What is an example of Blockchain? Bitcoin is a well-known example of Blockchain in operation. This is a type of digital money (commonly called a cryptocurrency). This electronic form of funds may be transmitted safely from user to user without the need for intermediaries. In other words, there is no requirement for a central bank or administration. Bitcoin isn't the only currency that uses Blockchain technology. Where can Blockchain be used? Blockchain uses extend well beyond cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. With its capacity to increase openness and fairness while also reducing businesses' time & expense, the technology influences a wide range of areas, from contract enforcement to making government run more effectively. What software is used for Blockchain? There is multiple software available in the market for Blockchain technology; some of them are: Solidity is one of the most widely utilized programming languages among Blockchain developers. Geth is a Go-based Ethereum node implementation. Mist is the authorized Ethereum wallet created by Ethereum's makers. Is Blockchain the future? Blockchain technology has several uses in a variety of sectors. Blockchain is already being utilized to help with identity management, smart contracts, supply chain analysis, and many other things. The full potential of Blockchain technology is unlikely to be realized. Till then, it is safe to assume that Blockchain is the future of the Fintech industry. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How is Blockchain used in finance?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Blockchain technology can improve finance and lending services by lowering counterparty risk and shortening issuance and settlement periods. It enables: authenticated paperwork and KYC/AML data, reducing risk exposures and facilitating real-time financial document verification." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is an example of Blockchain?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Bitcoin is a well-known example of Blockchain in operation. This is a type of digital money (commonly called a cryptocurrency). This electronic form of funds may be transmitted safely from user to user without the need for intermediaries. In other words, there is no requirement for a central bank or administration. Bitcoin isn't the only currency that uses Blockchain technology." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Where can Blockchain be used?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Blockchain uses extend well beyond cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. With its capacity to increase openness and fairness while also reducing businesses' time & expense, the technology influences a wide range of areas, from contract enforcement to making government run more effectively." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What software is used for Blockchain?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "There is multiple software available in the market for Blockchain technology; some of them are: Solidity is one of the most widely utilized programming languages among Blockchain developers. Geth is a Go-based Ethereum node implementation. Mist is the authorized Ethereum wallet created by Ethereum's makers." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Is Blockchain the future?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Blockchain technology has several uses in a variety of sectors. Blockchain is already being utilized to help with identity management, smart contracts, supply chain analysis, and many other things. The full potential of Blockchain technology is unlikely to be realized. Till then, it is safe to assume that Blockchain is the future of the Fintech industry." } }] }

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Spotlight

Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Limited

Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Limited is a banking company licensed under Section 22 (1) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 to carry on small finance bank business. It is also a wholly owned subsidiary of Ujjivan Financial Services Ltd. The bank has commenced its operations with effect from February 1, 2017.

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