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What banking can learn from Spotify’s successful pivot

In the early days of the pandemic, business pivots were stunning and swift as companies across every industry and around the globe transformed their operations, delivery, and even their products and services to meet the urgent global demands for masks, hand sanitizer and personal protective equipment. This move was so prevalent that even Prada became a mask maker

As the immediate urgency of the COVID crisis has become an uneasy new normal, that rapid change of business has transformed into more substantive pivots as well. These shifts are designed to build true resilience by simultaneously positioning businesses for short-term recession survival and positioning them for longer-term recovery and growth. 

Case in point: Music streaming giant Spotify, which, as advertising income dropped, was forced to seek new revenue streams. As the Harvard Business Review reports, the pandemic acted as a catalyst for the brand to take a page from Netflix’s book and pivot toward producing original podcasts.

Now the platform can not only reap healthier margins on copyrighted content but importantly, has become a more relevant cultural force—a true tastemaker. By leveraging the insights and analytics from its own user base, Spotify is now able to serve up a menu of content geared to be attractive and valuable for its millions of core subscribers. 

As the HBR piece points out, a successful shift in strategy must be a lateral extension of a brand’s core capabilities. In other words, no one would buy Spotify the skincare line. They would, however—and do, according to its millions of downloads—buy Spotify as a creator of video and audio content. 

In looking to building their own brand of resilience, smart banks and credit unions should first look to ways to serve their core customers with different products, services, and delivery channels designed to meet a true need that play to a financial brands’ strength. Often, a full pivot isn’t necessary—rather, a current service deployed in a new, more convenient, or compelling way can build a foundation for sustainable growth through the recession and beyond. 

To learn more about how your banking brand can pivot to meet the challenges and opportunities of the moment, email info@adrenalineagency.com.