When meeting a banking brand for the first time, chances are that it will be online. Your first impression of the brand is open to interpretation on this portal, which is why websites are often a repository of absolutely everything the brand could possibly offer.
Banks are renowned at overwhelming us with more products, more services and more value-adds. Less is more is not a strategy adopted by banks, or, for that matter, by their potential clients. We’ve become willing accomplices in choosing a bank that offers absolutely everything we might not need right now, but at least when or if the need arise, we won’t become unstuck. You never know.
But, as marketers, we should know. The way to a client’s wallet is not through a barrage of information offering limitless options. The way to your next client is – revelation – to focus on your client.
Bidvest Bank’s unequivocal, blatantly accountable positioning – “Your money, our business”, stems from the fact that all departments within the bank are collectively represented as niche, specialist businesses in their field.
In a likewise niche, specialist approach, Blast Brand Catalysts got straight down to business when they were tasked with the re-launch of the Bidvest website.
Extensive research was conducted on banking websites across Europe and the States, from major, multi-national banks to smaller, niche players. Very quickly Blast Brand Catalysts discerned the sites that were designed by decision makers, and the sites approved by shareholders.
One, desperately brave, independent bank stood out. Campaign longevity was clearly not the brief, but its blatant, student cum laude positioning, made us look, more than twice. Why? Because it refused to look, and behave, like a ‘bank’.
Here are some of the key take-outs during planning and review, learning from the current Bidvest Bank website and integrating the latest best practice:
- Simplify content and navigation. As our online experience and navigational behaviour matures, we have become more intuitive and willing to explore. No longer do we need to throw up as much as we can at the point of landing.
- Be visual. With mobile and tablets fast becoming the primary interface, a reactive site with large, graphic, easy-to-click banners and buttons make navigation a lot more accessible and fluid. This is especially the case with banks that have introduced mobile transactional banking apps.
- Promote visibility of the most commonly searched functions. The more visitors view and revisit certain items, the more obvious their positioning and prevalence should become. Frequent visitors can now rank their upfront content in order of preference and interest.
Considering the website as a primary communication medium, and not just a vast informational resource, the key objective was to present the visitor with a singular, immediate sense of what the Bidvest Bank brand stands for. The very first impression when you go to www.bidvestbank.co.za is an intruiging visual concept series with the campaign message “Unlimited Thinking, Specialist Banking”.
This is Bidvest Bank’s decidedly unbank-like moment, a specialist positioning that succeeds in avoiding the expected mould and delighting expectation. It’s banking online. But not as we’ve known it.
Established in 2001, Blast Brand Catalysts is a hybrid studio/agency that crosses the specialist disciplines of brand identity development and advertising. Design and advertising have dedicated skillsets and objectives. But working to a singular, longer-term strategic projection at the outset will factor market and media competitiveness as well as category differentiation. There is also an immediate, fluid transition from brand inception to activation.
Blast Brand Catalysts researches, strategises, designs, applies, implements, evolves and invigorates with proven, follow-through calibre. The tightly talented team gets it done, gets it done well, and gets the very next thing done even better.