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The rise of edutainment in fintech: How TikTok is accelerating finance literacy


By Danielle Long, Acting APAC Editor

July 27, 2022 | 6 min read

As fintech continues to accelerate, financial brands are looking for ways to create deeper and more meaningful connections with consumers. The Drum joined TikTok's Finance Unboxed webinar to hear how APAC marketers from Atome, Flip, Nativex and Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) are embracing a new content genre, edutainment, to engage consumers with the fintech category.


How TikTok is accelerating finance literacy through edutainment content

The fintech category has experienced rapid growth in recent years. From the surge in mobile banking and digital wallets to the explosion of Buy Now Pay Later apps and the mainstream popularity of cryptocurrencies, the category is benefiting from increased interest and activity.

With consumers conducting more and more financial transactions via their mobile phones and interacting with numerous fintech apps every week, there is a growing desire for greater economic literacy. More than 89% of TikTok users believe finance is an important topic and are actively trying to educate themselves, according to TikTok*. But they don't want to be bored with heavy financial information; instead, they want entertaining, fun, and educational content.

Edutainment content, which blurs the line between education and entertainment, is booming on TikTok and has helped propel finance into the fastest-growing category on TikTok in South East Asia. TikTok is now the “go-to” place for consumers to learn about fintech in a fun way, with one in two users discovering a new financial product on TikTok*.

But how can marketers harness this appetite for fintech edutainment to grow their brands and attract new customers?

Human-centric storytelling

Suki Lin, senior regional director, APAC, Nativex, said brands need to be aware of how significantly consumers and consumer behavior has changed due to the pandemic.

“The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the use of digital solutions and decreased the use of cash. Fintech has grown at a staggering pace driven by innovative mobile-first companies that attract massive investment in the region.

“The consumer in South East Asia is becoming highly sophisticated and tech-savvy – especially the new generation, who expect seamless integration of financial services into their daily life. To meet this demand, our financial service providers need to switch from product-centric focus and look into the consumer journey for a more human-centric perspective and offer more personalized solutions to consumers,” said Lin.

Sutirapan Sakkawatra, first executive vice-president (FEVP), SCB, said: “When consumers are looking for fintech products, they turn to opinions, reviews and comments from influencers and people around them.”

To capitalize on this, SCB has engaged its staff to create and run its content channel ensuring all of its outputs are authentic, engaging and delivered by trusted sources – the real people behind the financial institution. SCB’s channel launched in 2021, and it has attracted 660,000 followers and almost three million likes.

Create and curate TikTok content

Creating good quality engaging content is crucial to engaging users, according to Vangie Hu, vice-president marketing, Atome. Hu said marketers must avoid repurposing content from other platforms and ensure they create and curate content specifically for TikTok if they want to achieve success.

“At Atome, we believe we need to engage with consumers in a way that they like and, in the places where they are. Take TikTok as an example; we never adapt a big idea to the platform, but we co-create with the TikTok team, and we co-create the engagement with the consumers and influencers on the platform. We engage TikTok at the very early stages of the campaign creation and design the campaign on the TikTok platform and in the TikTok way to leverage the team’s expertise and the content lab.

“Also, we design the specific mechanics of campaigns according to TikTok features; for example, joy is very important. We always follow these principles to ensure we achieve our objectives across awareness, engagement and leading to conversion,” said Hu.

Hu said that engaging with influencers and communities to leverage consumer passion points would help create a connection. Still, ultimately, brands need to ensure that their products and services are desirable to consumers.

“All consumers, especially the young generation, want to adopt a more omnichannel solution and have more choices such as payment options. They value flexibility, the flexibility to manage their budgets and maximize promotions and rewards, and keep it simple, transparent, and easy to use.

“It's not only about payment solutions or only about fintech – it’s about everything in life. And the way we help consumers pursue their own lifestyle leveraging all the financial solutions,” said Lin.

Driving awareness and loyalty

With consumers seeking out solutions that improve their lifestyles, fintech marketers have a unique opportunity to generate awareness of their products and services and convert these users to customers.

Combining good quality content and a full-funnel strategy helped Flip achieve success, according to Andri Rahmad Wijaya, head of marketing, Flip (Indonesia).

Wijaya said Flip employed a full-funnel strategy on TikTok by leveraging key moments with always-on activity through organic content and In-feed Ads, then retargeting to maintain strong engagement and increase purchase intent to help drive quality leads and ultimately convert these to sales.

The result was a significant boost to the brand’s following and customer base.

“Flip was one of the early adopters of TikTok in Indonesia. One thing that we felt was very beneficial in us growing our user base was following a full-funnel strategy with TikTok, where we started with awareness and then retargeted those who had already interacted with our content.”

Flip also used TikTok to push beyond awareness and work on retention and loyalty among existing customers.

“This full-funnel strategy, [which followed users] from the awareness stage through to the retention or loyalty stage, has really helped us achieve our marketing objective,” said Wijaya.

*Source: TikTok commissioned study on finance attitudes and consumption among TikTok users in SEA, Feb 2022.
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