Apart from having a very funny ad the Barclays Pingit app is a genius piece of consumer focused innovation. Pingit allows you to transfer friends money via their phone number. This is a genuinely desirable product that will help Barclays acquire new customers. Operating in a notoriously difficult environment (you are more likely to get divorced than change your bank account + everyone hates banks) Barclays have made some very smart strategic decisions in the conception and introduction of Pinigit. These decisions have helped transform it from just being a branded app for existing customers to a powerful strategic marketing tool which will help them steal market share. I believe Pingit will be a massive success with longevity and here are three reasons why;
1. Barclays have started to build real value into their mobile offering rather than just borrowing it from their existing online platforms. They are now in a position to develop a really strong mobile community around making banking easier in a similar way Nike+ has built a community around helping runners train harder.
2. The strategic decision to make this product available to all (regardless of whether you have a Barclays account) is very significant. Everyone using the app will store small amounts of cash in a ‘Pingit Wallet’ in effect becoming a mini Barclays customer. We are then already one step closer to becoming fully blown Barclays customers and as they become known for making banking easier by interacting with consumers in the mobile space, I would argue the likelihood of making that last step will massively increase.
3. And finally the name Pingit is a neat strategic creative execution for the product. By coining the phrase Pingit (as in “Can I have that £20 you owe me?” – “Yeah I’ll ping it to you now”) early on we will use it to describe that action going forwards (like Hoover) regardless of whose technology we are using, thereby adding to the brand value.