How Klarna managed its brand launch in a pandemic

Launching into Australia at the start of the year, the fintech unicorn suddenly found itself needing to overhaul its marketing in the wake of the coronavirus crisis

Klarna, the buy-now-pay-later fintech outfit, had just launched in Australia with its global campaign, ‘Get What You Love’, featuring Lady Gaga, when the COVID-19 pandemic broke. 

Klarna Australia general manager and domain lead, Fran Ereira, told CMO it had to be really nimble about reinventing its brand launch. The small, innovative team pivoted and reshaped its brand-building activities to reflect the new market.

“It’s been an incredible 100 days since the launch in January, a time that has forced us all to reflect on our priorities and how we view the world,” Ereira said. 

Like all companies, Klarna has been impacted by the pandemic, but it quickly shifted to working from home and its operating model means it’s business as usual. The marketing execution takes a bit more adjusting.

The fintech needed to reinvent its approach from a heavily out-of-home (OOH)-focused, experiential campaign to more targeted and digitally oriented tactics. Ereira said it’s serious about delivering a positive financial wellness message to the market and its focus “is to support Australian businesses and give them options to keep generating sales and helping consumers spend mindfully to be able to buy the things they care about from quality local brands”. 

Klarna is working with partner, Commonwealth Bank, and has several campaigns in the pipeline including supporting the #WeWearAustralian campaign. It has also partnered with former fashion magazine editor, Kellie Hush, as a local content editor.

In addition to the impact of everyday restrictions, there's been the added challenge of launching a new brand to market. “We’re still educating Australian consumers and retailers about the benefits of Klarna because we want them to thrive and survive after the pandemic," Ereira said.

"Despite the challenging environment, we’ve had solid momentum with an exciting pipeline of great brands, which we can’t wait to share."

Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic has meant more consumers are staying in. This has been a boon for online retail and presented a unique opportunity for Klarna. Ereira this was counterbalanced by shifting attention to helping consumers be mindful with their money and buying quality items while promote its local retail partners in its marketing efforts.

“People are obviously spending a lot more time at home and shopping online, which is a great opportunity for us,” she explained. “Many consumers are spending about 30 minutes on the app and they are exploring, creating collections, checking out the deals and nominating price notifications on the things they love or aspire to own.”

Klarna's platform represents a bigger a shift in retail, which is putting greater payment choices into the hands of consumers. Gone are the days when consumers simply paid outright or with credit. The buy now, pay later options are giving shoppers many more ways to pay for things on their own terms. 

Ereira said Klarna knows consumers are demanding more transparency, flexibility and intuitive services and it wants to meet that demand head-on. It believes flexible payment options are not about encouraging overspending but helping to balance payments.

Klarna’s research data of Australian consumers shows 40 per cent of consumers are more likely to shop with a brand or retailer that offers flexible payment options. This rises to one in two for Gen Z (48 per cent) and Millennials (49 per cent).

"There is a major opportunity to deliver a payments option unlike any available in Australia,” Ereira said.

Looking ahead, Ereira predicted retailers will need a new arsenal of strategies to stay competitive in the new environment of increased competition with market uncertainty and fluctuating consumer spending.

“Brands need to ensure their marketing plans address the changing needs of consumers and deliver messages in the places their customers are spending time,” she added.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

More Brand Posts

What are Chris Riddell's qualifications to talk about technology? What are the awards that Chris Riddell has won? I cannot seem to find ...

Tareq

Digital disruption isn’t disruption anymore: Why it’s time to refocus your business

Read more

Enterprisetalk

Mark

CMO's top 10 martech stories for the week - 9 June

Read more

Great e-commerce article!

Vadim Frost

CMO’s State of CX Leadership 2022 report finds the CX striving to align to business outcomes

Read more

Are you searching something related to Lottery and Lottery App then Agnito Technologies can be a help for you Agnito comes out as a true ...

jackson13

The Lottery Office CEO details journey into next-gen cross-channel campaign orchestration

Read more

Thorough testing and quality assurance are required for a bug-free Lottery Platform. I'm looking forward to dependability.

Ella Hall

The Lottery Office CEO details journey into next-gen cross-channel campaign orchestration

Read more

Blog Posts

Marketing prowess versus the enigma of the metaverse

Flash back to the classic film, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Television-obsessed Mike insists on becoming the first person to be ‘sent by Wonkavision’, dematerialising on one end, pixel by pixel, and materialising in another space. His cinematic dreams are realised thanks to rash decisions as he is shrunken down to fit the digital universe, followed by a trip to the taffy puller to return to normal size.

Liz Miller

VP, Constellation Research

Why Excellent Leadership Begins with Vertical Growth

Why is it there is no shortage of leadership development materials, yet outstanding leadership is so rare? Despite having access to so many leadership principles, tools, systems and processes, why is it so hard to develop and improve as a leader?

Michael Bunting

Author, leadership expert

More than money talks in sports sponsorship

As a nation united by sport, brands are beginning to learn money alone won’t talk without aligned values and action. If recent events with major leagues and their players have shown us anything, it’s the next generation of athletes are standing by what they believe in – and they won’t let their values be superseded by money.

Simone Waugh

Managing Director, Publicis Queensland

Sign in