Effective marketing strategies for financial services in an ever-changing landscape


By Adetunji Faleye

In the fast-evolving realm of the financial industry, the adoption of adaptable and innovative marketing strategies is vital to establish meaningful connections with consumers and uphold brand significance. This insight was underscored by Yomi Badejo-Okusanya, Lead Partner at CMC Connect LLP and former president of the African Public Relations Association (APRA), during the 2nd National Stakeholders Conference of the Association of Corporate Affairs Managers of Banks (ACAMB) held recently in Lagos.

Themed “Marketing Financial Services in Dynamic Times,” Badejo-Okusanya emphasized that amidst market volatility, regulatory shifts, and changing consumer behaviors, financial institutions must implement effective strategies to navigate the fluid landscape. Among his recommendations, he stressed the importance of building trust through education by crafting content that empowers customers to make informed decisions. He noted that such an approach is pivotal due to prevailing consumer skepticism towards financial institutions.

“Our forthcoming survey, set to be released in September, has unveiled a startling lack of trust among people in their financial institutions. There exists a perception that traditional banks, in particular, exploit customers or fail to prioritize their interests. This lack of trust can be attributed to historical issues like subpar customer service and concerns about transparency. A study by PwC revealed that only 39% of Nigerians trust their banks, in stark contrast to the global average of 86%,” he revealed.

Delving further into his recommendations, the former APRA president stressed the necessity of open and transparent communication to foster trust, particularly in challenging times. He advised financial institutions to consistently update clients about market conditions, potential risks, and proactive measures to mitigate these risks. Additionally, he emphasized the importance of acknowledging both challenges and opportunities in an honest manner.

Furthermore, Badejo-Okusanya emphasized the need for financial institutions to tailor their solutions according to evolving customer requirements. By analyzing customer profiles and behaviours, institutions can provide personalized financial advice and products that cater to individual needs.

In the context of today’s technology-driven era, Badejo-Okusanya highlighted the significance of embracing rapid digital transformation. This involves investments in user-friendly online platforms for account management, trading, and financial planning. He also advocated for leveraging social media and email campaigns to keep clients informed and engaged.

Acknowledging the technological landscape, he asserted, “The rise of blockchain, artificial intelligence, and big data analytics has revolutionized the delivery and consumption of financial services. The digital revolution has ushered in a paradigm shift in service provision. A key component of this transformation is the increasing utilization of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, offering secure, transparent, and decentralized value transfer.”

Challenging the financial institutions to adapt was Tosin Adebayo Yussuf, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer of Heirs Life Assurance. She advised them to shift their operational mindset in the face of shrinking marketing budgets. Adebayo Yussuf urged institutions to provide services that inspire customers to seek further engagement.

This perspective was supported by Helen Ogboh, Group Head of Marketing at the Corporate Banking Directorate of First Bank. Ogboh emphasized the need for strategic planning to optimize budget utilization and enhance product visibility. She advocated collaboration with organizations that can amplify an institution’s visibility and associating with platforms that resonate with customers.

Nkechi Ali Balogun, MD/CEO of NECCI, underscored the importance of breaking down complex offerings to convey clear messages. She stressed that prioritizing and creative responsiveness are essential to redefining banking dynamics.

Dr. Sunnie Omeiza-Michael, Director of Trade at the Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry, highlighted the significance of fostering intentional word-of-mouth promotion. Omeiza-Michael urged banks to invest in enlightening programmes to educate customers about the diverse offerings of financial institutions.

Tolulope Ogundipe, Group Head of Banking Services at Premium Trust Bank, advocated for localized adaptations of bank products, considering the cultural diversity across different localities.

Steve Babaeko, MD/Chief Creative Officer of X3M Ideas Group and president of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN), emphasized the need to meet customers where they are, recognizing the evolving nature of customer acquisition.

James Agada, former Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CWG Plc and now Director of CWG Plc, emphasized the significance of collaborations between banks and fintech companies. He noted that by focusing on their respective specialties, banks and fintech can serve customers more effectively.

In summary, experts at the seminar emphasized that agility and a customer-centric approach are pivotal in navigating dynamic times. They advocated for a blend of education, personalized solutions, digital accessibility, transparent communication, and risk management insights to build robust client relationships and successfully adapt to evolving circumstances.


Guest speaker, Mr Yomi Badejo-Okusanya, receiving a plaque from ACAMB President, Rasheed Bolarinwa, right…while others look on.

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