Visa missed that boat in Kenya, the insistence on selling themselves as a platform to banks and not the end user has ended up costing them, in my view….The argument that it is banks that should push the Visa card usage and not Visa itself has seen average individual card usage down to one a month from three in 2013.
This is the challenge that the continually evolving changes in the financial world continue to present. For decades, fintechs (financial technology firms) saw the banks as their customers. All we have to do, they would reason, is offer the bank infrastructure (like the core banking system, ATMs, online platforms, apps, etc.) Yet the user was not the bank but the bank’s customers. And all was well until disruption happened and some technological firms found that they could get to ‘the real Slim Shady’ without going through the bank. The many that haven’t are finding their businesses under threat because banks are adopting their own technologies. Those who have, like wildly successful M-Pesa, have demonstrated just how much sales potential had been lying untapped. Unfortunately, Visa missed that boat in Kenya. The insistence on selling themselves as a platform to banks and not the end user has ended up costing them, in my view. The argument that it is banks that should push the Visa card usage and not Visa itself has seen average individual card usage down to one a month from three in 2013, and mobile money usage more than double over that period (CBK statistics). Yet, the Visa option is free and the M-Pesa one not. And now, Visa is playing catch-up with its current promos targeting ‘the real Slim Shady’.
When the real client is not the one you are pitching to it becomes important to put yourself in the place of the actual client. Sellers of mortgages admit that many times ‘the real Slim Shady’ is not the husband who comes asking about the property but the wife who will likely not ‘stand up’. Customer B, some told me they call her. And so successful ones pitch to the wife through the husband or wisely request to invite the wife to the viewing of the show house.
‘Will the real Slim Shady please stand up?’ No. He won’t. You, the seller must point him out.
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