MAKING BANKING SERVICES ACCESSIBLE TO INDIA’S UNDER-BANKED POPULATION
A fintech brand, Bankit is a UPI enabled assisted payment solution system, backed by Aadhaarshila, a company credited with being part of the Aadhaar implementation in India. Working closely with the client teams, we aimed to address a specific financial need-gap of the under-banked sector. Our objective was to position Bankit as a trust-worthy financial institution, a true partner in peoples’ progress.
Develop the branding, interface for the digital platform, and marketing communication for the launch of brand Bankit.
Bankit was conceptualised as a single gateway service for myriad users. The target audience comprised of end users as well as channel partners, namely, young urban consumers who were familiar with technology and digital wallets, under-banked consumers predominantly semi-urban / migrant population, and retailers and young entrepreneurs who were looking for a supplementary income.
As we began mining data to understand the consumer and competitive environment, our insights revealed that the needs of the two end user target groups differed considerably. While young urban consumers were well-versed with digital wallets and used these efficiently to their advantage, the under-banked sector needed help to navigate the world of digital banking services. In effect, we were faced with two diverse groups.
Given that both these groups sought different solutions, we worked with the client to split the bouquet of services to suit the needs of each consumer group, leading to the development of two separate brands:
• Cashnow for the tech-savvy urban group, with digital remittances and value-added services.
• Bankit, to address the basic banking needs of the under-banked sector. Its services would be offered via an assisted model, delivered by channel partners (retailers), through a network of retail stores and kiosks.
Once we established the need for two brands, we set about defining the visual strategy for each brand independently.
BUILDING BRAND BANKIT
While basic banking facilities and hassle-free banking transactions were essential for consumers, top-of-mind for the under-banked group, was security. Hence, it was vital that this group instinctively trust the brand, something that we addressed through the brand’s name and identity.
Incorporating ‘Bank’ in the name Bankit, allowed us to create instant acknowledgement for the brand’s offerings, while leveraging people’s age-old trust in banking institutions. We developed the identity with a lock and a finger print; the lock to deliver the subliminal message that Bankit is a secure platform and the finger print, an indication that the services are Aadhar enabled (AEPS) and linked to biometrics. Blue was our choice of colour since it is scientifically known to induce feelings of trust, stability and expertise; all qualities that the banking and financial sector seeks to be associated with.
We adopted a bilingual strategy for the logo unit; English and one other language, Hindi or regional. We designed the identity for each of these languages with a lot of thought and chose fonts to be in line with the character of the English script.
In order for the brand to be a success and the target audience to be able to identify with it, we established a variety of visual touchpoints that were relevant to them. The instore were carefully planned and designed, to communicate the brand benefits and build trust in the minds of the end users.
We designed communication that focused on the aspirations of the target group. Working closely with the client’s teams, we also positioned Bankit as a partner to the retailer’s growth. We developed communication for various platforms that would encourage and convince prospective retailers to partner with Bankit.
Once they did, the instore communication too had to instill a sense of pride in them, while also encouraging end users to uninhibitedly walk in and avail the services. Understanding that the channel partners would need to service numerous customers together, we developed an interface that focused on completing transactions as quickly as possible.
The UI and UX was designed to be clean, simple and devoid of unnecessary add-ons. Our intent was to make the entire online experience (portal and mobile app) a seamless one, and at the same time look robust and secure. The debit card was another key touchpoint we designed.
For many users this would be the first debit card they would own, and it was important that they felt proud and empowered by it.
Therefore Design's holistic view of needs and impact, combined with a systems approach to the brand development played an integral role in the success of Bankit. Today, it is a case study that other fintech start-ups are looking to emulate.
NAMING + BRANDING