Money Talks: Unlocking transformational insight in banking through storytelling

Esther Garland, Riki Neill and Henrietta De Souza
Face and HSBC, UK

The business context

Driven by a desire to maximise lifetime value from its customer base, HSBC have been pursuing a strategy that involves focussing efforts on better serving an increasingly ambitious and entrepreneurial Emerging Middle Class; an audience that is forecast to increase globally by 8 – 15% annually. The hypothesis is that if you can lock them into the brand early, these customers represent a highly profitable opportunity for the bank through not only engaging with the bank across both personal and business banking, but also over time becoming the new generation of high wealth customers.

While much of this growth in audience is forecast to come from emerging markets, developed markets remain significant in terms of volume of income available. However these are the trickier markets to win in unfortunately; never the sites of the most positive relationships, positive sentiment towards and trust in banks at both an institutional and brand level in these markets is at an all-time low following the banking crash. Banks are perceived to very much not be on the customers' side and there is a lot of ground to make up in order to win back the trust that can then engender loyalty.