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How Startups Can Tap Into the Thriving "Finfluencer" Economy

Michael Waters
July 27, 2022
Financial influencers have amassed large Gen Z and younger millennial followings. With the help of "finfluencers," fintech's can tap into these audiences.

In 2022, fintech brands are focusing heavily on influencer marketing.

Instagram and TikTok have each given rise to an economy of finance influencers, often called "finfluencers," who offer personal tips on financial literacy or explain more significant economic trends to hundreds of thousands of followers.

Influencers Offering Financial Advice Appeal to Younger Demographics

Influencers like Mrs. Dow Jones (231k+ followers on Instagram) and Humphrey Yang (2.7m+ followers on TikTok) have cultivated an audience of mainly Gen Z and younger millennials.

This demographics is commonly new to personal finance and wants to find better tools to manage their money and side hustles. These audiences look to financial education on social media to help them achieve financial goals like:

That makes the right partnership with a finfluencer especially powerful. Last year, when one finance influencer mentioned the investment robo-advisor Betterment in a video, he drove 10,000 new signups to the app in a single day. 

How Should Fintech Brands Use Financial Influencers?

Find Micro-Influencers

Because finance is so personal, sometimes the best route is to locate smaller content creators and financial advisors with niche but loyal audiences.

Enlisting ten influencers with high engagement rates is often more cost-effective than paying for a partnership with a single significant creator.

Finding the right creator on, say, TikTok is as simple as sifting through hashtags like #FinTok or joining the TikTok Creator Marketplace and searching finance accounts.

Have Them Explain What the Service Is

One of the most effective influencer marketing strategies for fintech companies is simple: have an influencer describe your service—like financial planning, for instance—and how a person might use it in their day-to-day life.

Many younger people don't know what financial services are out there for them, and just hearing about, say, a new cost-splitting app is often enough to convince them to download it.

A Free Guide on How to Launch Ads on TikTok

Put Influencer Content on Your Account

Most of the time, influencers will post sponsored videos on their accounts. But some fintech companies, in part for regulatory reasons, are tasking influencers with making content that appears on the company's channels.

On Instagram, the comedian Benito Skinner made a holiday shopping video for the buy now, pay later app Klarna, which Klarna posted across its social media channels. 

Hire Customer Service Teams for Follow-up Communication

Wherever the content partnership happens, fintech companies need to be ready to explain the ins and outs of their services.

Chatdesk Teams provides knowledgeable customer support teams who respond to people in the TikTok and Instagram comments, ensuring that curious viewers can convert into customers. Schedule a demo here to see it in action.

What if I Want to Be More Creative?

While having a trusted influencer or financial planner explain the ins and outs of your products can work well, some fintech companies are taking more creative approaches to convince viewers to download their apps:

Consider Exclusive Drops

One problem for many up-and-coming fintech companies is that people won't use their services until they buy a product or manage their money.

A possible way to convince them to download your app is to offer exclusive products or content collaborating with influencers. 

The buy now, pay later service Afterpay has a section of its app called The Dropshop. Celebrities, bloggers, and influencers co-sponsor products that are only available for sale on Afterpay.

Bretman Rock and Tove Love have each had exclusive merch drops on Afterpay. It's a way to get people to download Afterpay. The idea is that if they use the service to buy shoes from Bretman Rock, they'll know to use it for other products later down the line.

Afterpay, The Dropshop.

Host a Giveaway

The fintech startup Braid, an app that allows for group money management and cost splitting, announced that it was giving away $1k a week to people creating collaborative projects together.

Try a Content Partnership

The online investment company Wealthsimple has made content a central part of its marketing push.

It has its digital publication, Wealthsimple Magazine. Still, it has also recruited celebrities and influencers to open up about their experiences with money and achieving financial freedom on its YouTube channel.

The top episodes of Wealthsimple's "Money Diaries" series, in which celebrities describe moments in their life in which they struggled with money, have 1.5m+ views.

Wealthsimple's "Money Diaries" series

Work With Personal Finance Influencers More Directly

While simply having an influencer describe a product to their followers is excellent, fintech companies are increasingly taking a more hands-on approach: building tools that appeal to influencers themselves.

The digital bank Current, for instance, invested heavily in more traditional influencer marketing over the past few years, but it is now experimenting with this newer approach.

"Over time, we've transitioned from simple sponsorships to focusing more on providing a tool for influencers to engage their fans," its VP of marketing said in a recent interview.

Not only are influencers good customers, but when they use your product, their recommendations mean much more.

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