Payments

Chase is using memes and GIFs to bring millennials to QuickPay

  • Chase is rolling out a GIF campaign across its social media channels to build customer relationships and promote its peer-to-peer payments feature, which is powered by Zelle
  • The campaign signals a shift in banks’ digital marketing and messaging to customers as their interactions with every other brand become faster, more personalized, more relevant and more meaningful
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Chase is using memes and GIFs to bring millennials to QuickPay

JPMorgan is focusing its Zelle efforts on millennials, despite the platform outwardly claiming it’s not targeting that age group.

Chase will soon roll out an animated GIF campaign on social media as the second part of its QuickPay with Zelle campaign. Part one launched last weekend during the Grammy awards, during which the bank ran a 30-second television commercial starring Sierra Leonean ballerina Michaela DePrince, Chase’s next “Master” after Serena Williams and Steph Curry.

But the meme concept is something the bank hasn’t ever really done before – at least not at scale — and signals a necessary shift in banks’ digital marketing and messaging to customers as their interactions with every other brand become faster, more personalized, more relevant and more meaningful.

 

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“What changes is how you connect,” said Donna Vieira chief marketing officer for Chase’s consumer bank. “The channels, mediums and media you use, the copy and creative form like memes and GIFs. Clearly 15 years ago this would be nonexistent but it’s how this audience communicates with each other tells their stories and what they find engaging.”

Young fintech brands are actively targeting the next generation of customers on platforms like Instagram, which are largely ignored by older legacy companies, according to research by L2. Of more than 123,000 social posts by financial services brands in 2017, about four percent were posted to Instagram, compared to 12 percent on Facebook and 79 percent on Twitter.

L2 social media

The memes will be promoted through both promoted and organic posts on Chase’s social channels. The memes specific to the paid media campaign will run through the end of the first quarter and into the second. Team members from Chase’s social media, marketing and branding teams worked on the gif campaign in collaboration with VaynerMedia.

The strategy is to surround Chase customers in their day to day lives, identify moments where QuickPay, the peer-to-peer payments feature powered by Zelle, can be relevant and bridge the two in real life by telling stories around those moments — like splitting bills in restaurants, gifting, paying rent, for example — Vieira said. The goal for most banks is to establish strong relationships with customers and continue serving them as their financial needs become more complex, but for years the messaging has focused on big moments in life — college savings, buying your first car, purchasing your first home, retirement accounts. Relationship building in the digital world is more nuanced than that.

“My job is to make sure we remain relevant with the way we storytell and engage. That means understanding how moments in life are changing,” Vieira said. “What is a small moment for one may not be for another. It’s not for me or Chase to judge whether that moment is big or small it’s my job to understand that moment is important for the consumer.”

For existing QuickPay users, Chase wants to reinforce the benefits; namely the ubiquity and immediacy that Venmo lacks. It’s also introducing recurring and future payments that can be scheduled in advance.

And obviously, it’s also targeting new users — specifically millennials. The meme campaign is intentionally designed to appeal to students and millennials, who account for 60 percent of new consumer banking customers, according to a spokesperson for the bank.

In 2017 Chase saw a nearly 50 percent increase in p-to-p transactions — which includes all transactions before and after it joined the Zelle network — and a 15 percent increase in enrollments. (Chase didn’t specify whether customers are auto-enrolled or if they have to sign up.)

On Monday Zelle reported it transacted $75 billion across its member banks in 2017. Venmo processed $30 billion in the same period.

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