UK: Chase has tapped into younger and richer audiences. But where does the bank go now?
May 30th, 2023, Christien Pheby

UK: Chase has tapped into younger and richer audiences. But where does the bank go now?

Chase launched in the UK in 2021 with a host of attention-grabbing financial products – including 1% cashback on all purchases, a 3% AER savings account, and a 5% AER ‘round-up’ pot. Thanks to this offering, the J.P. Morgan backed firm has gained a foothold in the British market and racked up over a million customers. But with the cashback offer now capped and the interest rates on its savings accounts now (reportedly) beatable, where can Chase go next?

YouGov Profiles data can give us a better idea of who the bank’s current customers are, what its potential customers look like, and how they can more easily engage with both.

Who are Chase customers – and target customers?

Starting with age, 36% of Chase customers are 18-34, compared to 29% of the adult public; 42% are 35-54, compared to 31% of the adult public; and 23% are over 55, compared to 38% of the adult public. It’s a group that also skews male: 57% are men, compared to 49% of the general population, while 43% are women compared to 51% of the general population.

Chase customers are also more likely to be in full-time work (61% vs. 43%), and less likely to be parents (49% say they are not parents compared to 40% of the adult public). Looking briefly at financials, a fifth (21%) say they have over £50,000 in savings, next to one in ten members of the general public (10%).

So while overall, a typical Chase customer might be a middle-aged man in a professional job with a comfortable lifestyle, it has also won a strong foothold with younger consumers

Taking a quick look at some target customers for Chase – those with a positive impression of the brand, but who do not currently bank with them – might reveal an immediate marketing opportunity in the demographic data. These Chase-friendly Britons are more likely to be women than Chase customers (48% female; 52% male), and skew a little older: 36% are aged 18-34, 33% are aged 35-54, and 31% are over 55. This group are less likely (13%) to say they have over £50,000 in savings.

So targeting campaigns at female , older , or less well-heeled consumers might help the brand get these potential customers over the line.

Chase customers are more confident about budgeting, more interested in investment, and more likely to have multiple bank accounts

Exploring attitudes, Chase customers are more likely to agree that they have higher levels of financial comfort and literacy than either the brand’s potential target customers or the general public. Some 71% say they consider themselves financially secure (next to 61% of Chase target customers and 56% of the general public) – while just 28% say they find financial matters confusing (vs. 28% of target customers and 37% of the general public).

This group are more sceptical of cryptocurrency (18% vs. 26% of target customers, 19% of general public). Chase customers are more positive about their career prospects (57% vs. 51% of target customers and 42% of the general public), although this may well be a byproduct of the fact that they are more likely to be in full-time work.

One area of overlap between Chase’s current customers and its would-be customers – the quick wins for marketers and salespeople – is that they are both roughly as likely to take news about finance and the economy into account before making a purchase, especially in comparison to the wider nation (60% Chase customers; 61% target customers; 48% general public).

So Chase can boast an informed customer base and an informed target audience. But one area where it may come unstuck is in its audience’s overwhelming preference for having more than one bank account: four in five (81%) say they like having multiple accounts, compared to three in five (59%) target customers and just over half (53%) of the general public.

In fact, if we ask the brand’s customers for their main bank account, 16% say Barclays, 11% say Santander, 10% HSBC and another 10% Nationwide – and just 8% say Chase.

On that front, we have some good news for the brand: its customers are nearly three times as likely to say they intend to switch their main current account (19%) than the general public (7%); target customers (16%) are nearly as likely to do so as well.

Target customers are also more likely to say they intend to open a new account than the general public (16% vs. 7%), although Chase customers again win out here (19%). Could the bank be at risk of losing a part of its target audience to a flavour of the month brand?

How Chase customers and target customers choose a bank

The top motivations for Chase customers when choosing a bank are interest rates (65% vs. 53% of target customers and 37% of the general public), special offers (43% vs. 21% vs. 14%), and a trustworthy brand (41%).

The latter is even more important to Chase’s target customers (52%); given that the brand only launched in 2021, this may be a problem that is partially resolved with time. Customer service is also more important to the brand’s would-be audience (43% vs. 39% of Chase customers), as is digital accessibility (54% of target customers; 36% of Chase customers) and ease of using the website (35% of target customers; 27% of Chase customers).

So if Chase improves its digital experience, its customer service, and brand trust, it will better appeal to this group of consumers.

We can also say that Chase’s decision to orient much of its brand around savings might make a lot of sense. Some 30% of Chase customers say they intend to open a savings account in the next year; 23% of target customers say the same.

How Chase customers feel about marketing and advertising

How, then, to convert interested customers into actual customers? Looking at attitudes towards marketing reveals that Chase’s current audience is more likely to feel exasperated by advertising: seven in ten (70%) say they feel bombarded by it compared to under two-thirds of target customers (64%).

They’re also more likely to skip through ads on recorded programmes (86% vs. 79%), more likely to think ads are a waste of time (44% vs 41%), and less likely to expect ads to entertain them (56% vs. 61%). Just 17% say they trust the ads they see on posters and billboards, compared to 30% of target customers, while 41% vs. 38% say they don’t trust the ads on TV.

Much of the time they believe that they won’t even notice ads (although it’s important to remind ourselves that what people say and what they do can be different when it comes to ads): just 32% say they notice them at bus stops (32% vs. 45%), while 41% vs. 44% notice them at train stations and 42% vs. 44% notice them at airports.

So for Chase, then, advertising is a potential double-edged sword: its target customers and the wider nation may be more open to it in some instances, but there is genuine potential to annoy the customers it already has. Social media could represent an opportunity: 35% of customers, and 33% of would-be customers, say they’re more likely to engage with ads on these platforms than ads on regular websites.

This represents a brief snapshot into the data we have on Chase’s current customers, its potential customers – and those of its competitors in the space.

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YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data for Great Britain is nationally representative of the population and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles.