Magazine article Marketing

Internet Banks Get Ready for Simplified Account Switching. (News Insight)

Magazine article Marketing

Internet Banks Get Ready for Simplified Account Switching. (News Insight)

Article excerpt

Internet banks are gearing up to steal customers from their high-street rivals, following the implementation this week of technology that makes switching current accounts quicker and easier.

Brands such as Smile, First Direct and Intelligent Finance are using marketing and PR to alert customers to the changes and encourage them to switch accounts. Other virtual brands are set to follow suit.

Nick Bowyer, marketing director of First Direct, said since the launch of the bank's 'Smart banking' campaign, it had seen a 6% rise in enquiries to switch accounts.

"It's going to mean that customers will have more control and, as that starts to dawn on them, they will increasingly review how their bank is performing," said Mike Phillipson, marketing director at Smile. Phillips on said that the established high-street players were most likely to suffer as customers switch accounts, in response to poor service.

Jim Spowart, chief executive of Intelligent Finance, said that the bank launched an aggressive naming-and-shaming PR campaign earlier this year, in anticipation of the move to improve current account transfer times. …

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