RBS recruits army of digital influencers to promote banking app Bó
RBS has recruited a network of social media influencers to post photographs promoting its new digital banking app in a bid to gain customers, according to The Telegraph.
Sponsored Instagram posts from online celebrities including a model, an interior designer and a woman popular on viral video app TikTok, all promote NatWest owner RBS’s new digital banking app Bó.
The Bó app, released in November last year, competes with challenger banking start-ups such as Monzo and Revolut and allows customers to manage their current account through an app.
The social media campaign was jointly run between RBS and card provider Visa.
Many of the promotional Instagram posts claim that Bó has helped online influencers to save money by tracking their spending.
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“Bó is my secret weapon this year to ensure January doesn’t mean the usual beans on toast diet,” read one of the promotional Instagram posts.
Another sponsored photo posted by model and actor Dominic Andersen was accompanied by a caption which said that Bó “makes budgeting seem cool or almost like a challenge.”
RBS executives are hoping that the new app will win over customers in January by helping them to limit their spending. Bó encourages customers to move money into a virtual piggy bank which holds the funds away from the main account. Unlike rival app Monzo, these savings do not accrue interest.
RBS decided to make its own banking app after an initial acquisition approach to Monzo was rejected by the financial technology firm. Monzo has since grown be valued at more than £2bn by investors.
The sponsored Instagram posts were published after RBS was accused of writing fake reviews for Bó before the app officially launched. An RBS spokesman notes that the app was tested by 2,800 people before its launch.
“We test our products, including with staff, before they are available to our customers and use feedback from pilots to improve the services and products we offer,” says the spokesperson. Using social media influencers to promote digital banks has been an effective strategy for rival digital bank Revolut.
The start-up launch a “Revolut Pioneer” scheme in 2019 which saw it pay students, YouTube vloggers and Instagram stars. An email sent to Revolut customers said that the company wants to recruit people who have “a confident tone, a loyal audience and an enthusiasm for better money services”.
Revolut paid influencers up to €36 (£30) for each customer they referred to the business.