LONDON: In the last year, the startup bank has grown swiftly. Each month, more than 60,000 new customers open bank accounts; growth targets for the next two years are in the millions. WARC spoke to the company’s head of marketing to understand how it builds and services a bank for people who hate banks.

Monzo is a bank built around the emotions that the financial services sector has created in consumers. “It’s much more emotional,” CEO, Tom Blomfield, said in 2017. “A lot of young people feel anxious and stressful about money. They lose track of their spending, with some payments taking three or four days to appear, so they exceed their overdraft”.

Monzo hasn’t had to sell hard to investors or new customers. As much as 80% of its new customer growth comes from word-of-mouth. Part of the offer is the experience not of being bribed but truly being attracted. For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: How Monzo built a bank for people who hate banks.

“The way big banks attract switchers is by bribing them – you get £100 or £150 to switch, [but] you need to pull customers in, not push them, and you need to get away from the idea that you can just bribe customers,” the company’s head of marketing, Tristan Thomas told WARC.

To achieve this, the marketing team has to surface a different set of demands in its conversations with the rest of the company. Though it is still small, the aim of the company even as it grows is to keep silos to a minimum. Copywriting is, for instance, an important skill throughout the company – Monzo sees its responsibility to communicate clearly as fundamental. “You know when it’s gone badly … there was backlash because we did that wrong.”

But elements of typical marketing teams’ remit are cast out over the business. Transparency sits at the core of the in-house team, and so it publishes quarterly goals and explains the business rationale behind every decision, not only to the community of members but to the public.

The combined effort of marketing copy and product development working in tandem has resulted in some category-shifting features. The gambling block feature was created by Monzo and has now been adopted by another high-street bank. Monzo’s ultimate aim is not only to create a sustainable business, but to change the way banking works and bring benefits back to the consumer.

Sourced from WARC