A Brand-New Streaming App Could Be a Game-Changer for Bank Marketers

By John Oxford

You may be aware that a new streaming app called Quibi was launched on April 6, and it might just be a bell cow for future content creation and distribution.

In case this is your first time reading about Quibi, according to Vanity Fair’s recent article:

Quibi, short for “quick bites” has been designed with mobile usage in mind. Every piece of content clocks in at 10 minutes or less in running time. and its target audience is consumers between the ages of 25 and 35 who spend a majority of their free time watching content on YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok.

The service will initially contain three types of content: what Quibi calls “Movies in Chapters” (“big stories told in chapters that are 7 to 10 minutes in length”), unscripted reality content and short-form documentaries, and a category of “Daily Essentials,” i.e. news programming from a variety of brands and publishers—including NBC and CBS.

All told, 50 programs will be available at launch, with the expectation that an additional 125 series will arrive in the service’s first year.

It’s really just “shows” built for short-run content consumption. But with more than 300,000 users subscribing on its opening day and approximately one million at the time this column is published, Quibi appears to be off to a pretty decent start. And at $4.99 with ads and $7.99 ad-free, well, you can do the math (given there is a 90-day trial period). Oh, and it’s worth noting that Quibi has sold out all its advertising space through April 2021. That’s a lot of math too.

But we’re not writing about Quibi to sell you on downloading the app for personal usage or even buying future ads or looking for product placement on the platform. We’re writing about Quibi to understand how it can relate to future bank marketing and content delivery.

As consumer consumption has moved to short-run content—think about video posts on social media and digital platforms—any good marketer should be working to adjust to their customer preferences, even if customers are not fully aware of their own viewing habits.

Although it’s a little late to get out in front of this consumption curve, how can you adjust your content for the mass intimacy of new consumer behavior?

Start with building your content for short consumption. Then make it shorter. Can you get it to three minutes or less?

Can you build an app that works in partnership with your banking app but allows for easier consumption? If this doesn’t make sense, just think about the difficulty of trying to add short content pieces to your out-the-box core mobile app most of us have. Now you understand why you probably need a stand-alone app for content distribution.

What advantages does use of a standalone app give your brand?

The first is a content-retainer-type catalogue of your content for your employees to visit and share. It also gives your brand more shelf space on your clients’ phones. If done tastefully, it could also allow for less interruptive ads and how-to videos to be placed on this app—big emphasis on tasteful and less interruptive.

But would your clients download a second or even third bank-branded app? Probably not if you don’t make interesting content or give them something of value. If you can’t do this or do not plan to, no reason to read any further.

If, however, this has caught your attention, here’s the plan. Build a content plan around your brand narrative. For an example (yes, we write about it all the time), see renasantnation.com/shows/. Next, create your content calendar. For help with that, see this article we did for ABA Bank Marketing.

Beyond just a schedule and creating relative content, your frequency will be very important as well. And we’ve not even started into tagging links, SEO optimization with content, converting clients from this content idea with an MCIF and so much more. There is only so much room in a column.

Once you have a content schedule, have your creative narrative down and have begun the actual production process, make sure to get as many different types of content layout as possible along with stripping the audio. Vertical and horizontal versions, version with closed caption, audio for podcast and radio, along with creating short segments for promotion, trailers and even small content posts.

All of this content and layout styling will not only help you to market your brand, it will almost organically build out your Quibi style content app. Because although standing up an app is hard, even harder is building continuous relevant content, finding an audience and distributing that content. Not to mention at some point turning views and clicks into clients or additional wallet share.

And should you go down this road, we believe, as digital consumptions habits change, you’ll be there with your marketing ready for how the client wants to receive messaging from you and with your own channel—instead of being reliant on TV and other expensive forms of mass media that appear to have a shrinking audience due to cord-cutting, on-demand consumption and the like.

Although trying to build a Quibi-style app will not work for everyone—or maybe anyone as it’s so new—what we’re trying to get across to our fellow marketers here is that we should pay attention to the Quibi journey and its delivery format, decide if it should be a consideration in a new-style delivery platform app for your brand and, if so, how do you go about executing it.

For a deeper dive on the Quibi discussion and more marketing insights, listen to Josh Mabus of the Mabus Agency and me on the latest Marketing Money Podcast.

John Oxford, director of marketing at Renasant Bank, and Josh Mabus, president of the Mabus Agency, are co-hosts of the Marketing Money Podcast.