Bank Advertising: Strategies, Ideas & Insights

Banking is changing as the world continues to move online. Studies consistently show that younger people prefer mobile and online banking. A study by Facebook found that 49% of Millennials prefer to bank by smartphone. It only makes sense to target these new customers where they are: online.

A study by Facebook found that 49% of Millennials prefer to bank by smartphone.

In this guide, we’ll show you what we’ve learned from 5+ years of creating digital advertising success for banks and other financial institutions. From understanding the basics of digital advertising to the top platforms and innovative bank advertising strategies, this guide is designed to kickstart your bank’s digital marketing efforts.

In this guide:

Discover how Session Interactive can revolutionize your bank's advertising strategy.

At Session Interactive, we specialize in banks and other financial institutions, with a particular focus on using data to inform strategy. We helped Canvas Credit Union expand with redesigned local branch pages that offer all the information potential customers need. Common-sense strategies like these consistently draw traffic as the search landscape changes.

As a PPC agency for banks, we’ll help you find and refine the strategy that gets you highly qualified leads with effective, efficient digital ads.

Digital Advertising Basics for Banks

In digital advertising, every click and scroll can unlock new possibilities. In this section, we’re breaking down the essentials of digital marketing into three main strategies: Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Display Advertising, and Social Media Advertising. Whether you’re looking to dazzle with display banners or engage through eloquent tweets, these strategies help you captivate your audience and make your banking services shine online.

Social Media Advertising for Banks

Social media advertising lets you pinpoint and engage target audiences with precision. Paid social campaigns use user data to tailor their messaging so ads can be highly targeted and, in some cases, personalized. Paid social campaigns can be highly effective and efficient when targeted well.

Try launching targeted campaigns for specific products, such as credit cards or mortgage services, to users with relevant interests. For instance, you could use Facebook’s detailed targeting options to promote its student loan refinancing options to recent graduates or its retirement planning services to individuals nearing retirement age. Craft compelling, tailored ads and choose the right platforms for their audience to drive campaigns that convert.

Display Advertising for Banks

Display advertising is like having your bank’s billboard on the digital highway. It’s all about catching the eye with stunning visuals and compelling messages that target specific customer needs.

You could use personalized ads that reach users with reminders of the dream home they saw on your mortgage page or eye-catching banners on aspirational advice that lead back to your services. Capture their imagination with ways your financial services can help them achieve their dreams.

PPC Advertising for Banks

PPC advertising lets your bank appear right when customers are searching for relevant offers. It’s about bidding for and winning the right keywords to maximize your cost-to-conversion-intent ratio.

Consider bidding on keywords like “best savings account” to appear at the top of search results or using geo-targeting to promote local branch services to nearby customers. Banks can drive more qualified traffic and conversions by crafting ads that speak directly to user queries.

Top Advertising Platforms for Banks

Nowadays, it’s easy to use digital advertising platforms, but it’s hard to make them effective. Too often, banks fail to make the most of their advertising budgets. It’s important to fully understand a platform before spending money on it and root your digital ads in a data-based strategy. Here are the digital advertising platforms you should consider.

Meta Ads (Facebook and Instagram)

Meta Ads blend Facebook’s extensive reach with Instagram’s visual storytelling flair. From carousel ads showcasing your latest credit card rewards to targeted display ads popping up in news feeds, Meta is a treasure trove for bank marketers.

Try creating thematic ad campaigns around financial planning tips, featuring them on both Facebook and Instagram. Using Meta’s robust targeting options, you can tailor your campaigns to reach potential customers based on interests and behaviors.

Google Ads

With Google Ads, you can tap into the world’s most popular search engine, reaching customers precisely when they’re seeking financial advice or services. Google has a huge reach along with a wide range of selection tools, so you can cast as wide or narrow of a net as you want.

Here’s an idea: search ads that answer common financial questions with links to your blog, or display ads to introduce your banking app to tech-savvy users across the web. Try highlighting customer testimonials in local search ads to build trust within your community.

LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn stands out for banks focusing on B2B relationships, offering a professional playground to connect with businesses in need of financial services. Tailor your ads to speak directly to industry leaders, entrepreneurs, and professionals seeking banking solutions that understand their market.

Microsoft Advertising

Microsoft Advertising extends your bank’s reach beyond Bing search results into a broader network of sites and platforms. Display ads across Microsoft’s ecosystem to engage users in diverse online environments and specific niches.

Other Channels

Don’t stop at the usual suspects; explore alternative networks like Pinterest for lifestyle-based advertising or Snapchat for younger demographics. Niche display ad networks and specialized social media platforms can offer untapped audiences eager for your banking solutions.

Bank Advertising Ideas & Insights 

Here’s the fun part: five bank advertising ideas and insights that can transform how you connect with your audience. These are based on our experience as a digital advertising agency specializing in banking and financial services clients.

1. Leverage Multi-Channel Campaigns

Multi-channel campaigns are like casting a wider net to catch more fish. Imagine promoting your latest mobile banking app across Instagram, YouTube, and financial blogs, creating a cohesive story that follows your customers wherever they go online. 

When you are consistent across channels, whether your customers are scrolling through social media or reading up on investment tips, your bank is there. 

Multi-channel ad campaigns integrate seamlessly with other parts of your bank’s overall digital strategy. By combining digital advertising with bank SEO strategies and social media campaigns, you can nurture leads from awareness to conversion, wherever they are in the sales funnel.

2. Ensure Ad Consistency Across Platforms & Channels

Consistency is key to making your bank’s voice heard loud and clear. When your ads maintain a consistent theme, tone, and messaging across Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google Ads, they amplify your brand’s presence and boost recall. 

For instance, if you’re promoting a zero-fee checking account, make sure the imagery, benefits, and call-to-action communicate consistently across channels. The ads will reinforce each other and build a strong impression. After a few ads, potential customers begin to associate your branding with your offer of zero-fee checking.

3. Provide Solutions to Consumer Pain Points

Successful bank advertising connects with potential customers’ values rather than just their money. Identify common customer challenges, like saving for retirement or buying a first home, and tailor your ads to address these issues directly. 

Use targeted ads on platforms like Facebook to offer a free webinar on financial planning or highlight your easy-to-use budgeting tool to position your bank as a helpful advisor rather than just a service provider. By speaking to values and aspirations, your ads can break through the noise that savvy internet users naturally filter out.

4. Targeting Multi-Format Financial Content

Try a variety of content formats. Whether it’s driven by accessibility or preference, everyone has their own preferences for which formats they take in. People are more receptive to your message when it’s in the style they prefer. 

Try placing banner ads on financial news sites, sponsoring podcasts about entrepreneurship, or creating engaging video content about the mortgage process for YouTube. This strategy increases the visibility of your banking services and builds deeper connections with potential customers.

5. Analyze Performance Data and Optimize Accordingly

Did we mention we love data? Data helps you focus and optimize so you know exactly how and why your advertising is landing (or missing the mark). 

By analyzing click-through rates, conversion rates, and social engagement, you gain insights into what resonates with your audience. Use this data to tweak your messaging, visuals, or targeting criteria. Let data guide your advertising investment to where it is most effective.

Unleash Your Potential with Data Experts

The right strategies and insights can transform how your bank connects with your potential audiences. However, turning these ideas into real results requires expertise and a deep understanding of both the banking sector and digital advertising. This is where Session Interactive shines. As a digital agency with extensive experience partnering with banks, we understand and have the experience to navigate your challenges. We excel at implementing data collection and turning those insights into efficient advertising strategies.

Ready to elevate your bank’s marketing strategy and outshine the competition? Contact Session Interactive today to request a consultation. Our team of experts is here to guide you every step of the way, from serving ads to your pinpointed audience and crafting bespoke multi-channel campaigns to optimizing your digital presence for conversion.