From followers to customers: a banking master class

Antonio Gaioso Henriques explains how Activo Bank has harnessed social media

June 14, 2017

Antonio Gaioso Henriques, VP of Activo Bank, illustrates how Activo Bank has launched itself into the realm of social media in order to engage with its customers and tailor-make its product. With the dual purpose of conducting extensive market research and promoting financial literacy, Antonio set out Activo Bank’s hope of turning followers into customers.

World Finance: What’s been the driving force behind these social media initiatives?

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: We are a remote bank that want to have close relations to our customers and that want to know what the customers or potential customers, in general, what they need. What are their interests and we want transform those potential to customers. The main initiative is to know the people of our strategic market segment, which are basically the Millennials.

World Finance: You are connecting with a lot of people, you’re producing a lot of content across your social media channels. Are the conversations you’re starting sometimes more important than the customers you’re gaining?

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: No, we have a very important one, word of mouth and we have a very important recommendation from our customers that impacts very positively on those non-customers, but with the interest following Activo. Our goal is to convert to customers all the followers that we have.

World Finance: I mentioned at the top the Facebook live video chat that you are doing now; where did this idea come from and how effective has it been?

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: In the beginning, where we have some of our staff coming from TV, it was an original idea that we have; so far it has been very successful and different. It’s banking in a way of financing literacy. The purpose is not to sell product but to [make] literate our potential customers.

World Finance: The Activo Bank brand is all about simplification; how are you making your client’s lives simpler?

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: We don’t want to have many products; our goal is to keep it simple. Sometimes it’s difficult to conciliate simple and go behind what the client needs. But simple products are very intuitive and very ready to use; that’s the idea and our client satisfaction index is one of the greatest in Portugal.

World Finance: Can you talk to me about some of products that you are creating?

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: From loans to deposits or investments, everything is very simple and very intuitive; anybody with very good financial knowledge can access and can decide what to do or to buy the product.

World Finance: And I suppose, by having all these conversations on social media with your customers and your potential customers, that’s market research as well; you understand their needs.

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: Yes, which is important for a bank which is remote banking but that wants to be very close to its customers. It’s to have the inside of the customers and we want to be part of their lives, when they want to buy a home when they want to buy a car.

World Finance: Antonio, thank you.

Antonino Gaioso Henriques: Thank you.