THE APPLICATION OF E-MARKETING IN NIGERIAN BANKING INDUSTRY
(A CASE OF UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA - UBA PLC)
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Marketing is the process by which companies determines what product and services may be of interest to customers, and the strategy to use in sales, communication and business development. Kotler and Armstrong (2000) see marketing as “a social and managerial process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging products and value with others”.
Thus, the above definition represents social and managerial perspective of marketing while activities such as product development, research, communication, distribution, pricing and services are also among the various marketing activities.
However, the explosive growth in computer, telecommunication and information technology gave birth to contemporary marketing which has had a major impact on the way companies bring value to their customers. Customers now interact with their banks on-line and vice versa. Headquarter of banks now reach their various branches through the internet facility. In fact, large volume sharing of information resources is fast becoming a dominant feature in the business sphere.
Having the above peculiar situation that exist in the business environment, this study will carryout a comprehensive investigation on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) appreciation in the Nigerian banking sector. The factors constraining such utilization and the effectiveness of internet utilization in the Nigerian banking services. Much as there is literature on the global experience of the internet system, few detailed empirically based studies exist concerning internet appreciation in Nigeria banking organizations.
Although, some Nigerian companies have introduced some internet related business, few of these companies may have leveraged on their web presence to increase profitability, while others have just put up barely functional websites, without associated appreciable result (Osugwu 2b03).
It is on the record that the electronic digital computer made its first entrance or appearance in Nigeria in 1963, in connection with the analysis of the 1962/1963 national census data. In the 10 years between 1963 and 1973, the total number of computer in the country stood around 20-25, with 6 or so associated with the multinational companies (Nwachukwu, 1999). By 1977, the numbers of installations have grown to around 70. It was by this time that many universities, government departments and parastatals, organizations including West African Examination Council (WAEC), Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), Federal Office of Statistics (FOS), as well as many banks and commercial firms began to show interest in computer.
As assessment of the level of success achieved by Nigeria banks as a result of internet use, ascertainment of whether or nor information technology has any effect on the success of marketing.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The inability of the banking industry to avail itself of the opportunities available, through information and communication technology (ICT). Also the need for banks to design products that will guarantee quality, safety and comfortability to customers through e-marketing.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTION
The following research questions have been put forward as answers to them would help in the solution of the problem raised:
1. What marketing opportunities do online/internet marketing channel provide?
2. What are the benefits of e-marketing to Nigerian banks and customers?
3. What are the benefits of the online banking to customers?
1.4 OBJECTIVE OF STUDY
The objective of the study is to identify the use of e-marketing in banking operations in areas of product designs for achieving customers’ satisfaction.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study is of significant to all Nigerian banks (financial institutions), marketers and business researchers. It will therefore be of particular importance to an organization wishing to achieve their marketing goals efficiently in this digital age as the internet (information and communication technology) is becoming a pervasive influence.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study is limited to the application of e-marketing in Nigerian banks; united Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) as a case study. Success and extent of benefits of e-marketing to banking business in Nigeria.
1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The following are some of the constraint the researcher experience during the course of writing the research work.
Time: Basic limitation was in the area of time that was required to source for materials and put them together. But time was very limited as the researcher has to combine course work, and office hour thus becoming difficult to dedicate enough time to the project.
Finance: A lot of money is required to complete this work as transportation to area of research respondent who will help to generate needed information and producing the questionnaire, administering and retrieving if for analysis as this will entails spending much money in bid to acquire them all.
Respondent attitude: This aspect gives the researcher some difficulty because most of the respondents were nerve to give out all necessary information due to fear or the feeling of giving out managerial information. Thus some vital information were not disclose to the researcher, so the researcher worked with only the available information as at when the research work was undergoing on.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
E-Marketing: is a process by which individuals, groups or organization(s) obtain, conceive, offer, execute or distribute products, service or information of value via internet enabled computer network or technological involvement of digital media to satisfy the purpose, want or needs of buyers, sellers and other third party intermediaries.
Marketing: Is a social and managerial process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging product and value with others.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT): This is a combination of “information technology” and “communication technology”; it merges computing with high speed communication link, carrying data, sound and video (Alabi, 2005).
Internet: This is a global computer network that links computer networks all over the world by satellite and telephone, connecting users with service networks such as e-mail and the World Wide Web (www).
Online Banking: Refer to internet banking which allow customers to conduct financial transactions on a secure website operated by their retail or direct bank, example; mobile banking, automated teller machines (ATM), fund transfers, etc
Banking: A broader definition of a bank is any financial institution that receives, collects, transfers, pays, exchange, lends, invest, or safeguard of money and properties for its customers.
Products: Are goods or services produced by a company to his customers.
Customers: Are those who make a purchase or give business, especially habitually to any particular seller or establishment.
Services: Are activities or benefit organization offer to its customers which is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything.
1.9 HISTORY OF UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA PLC (UBA) - CASE STUDY
Today, United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) is the product of the merger of the old UBA and the erstwhile Standard Trust Bank Plc (STB) respectively, and a subsequent acquisition of the erstwhile Continental Trust Bank (CTB). The union emerged as the first successful corporate merger and acquisition in the history of Nigerian banking.
United Bank for Africa history date back to 1948 when the British and French Bank Limited (BFB). Although, today UBA emerged at a time of industry consolidation induced by regulation, the consolidated UBA was borne out of a desire to lead the domestic sector to a new era of global relevance by championing the creation of the Nigerian consumer finance market, leading to a private/ public sector partnership at supporting the acceleration of Nigerian economic development and transforming the institution from mere banking comprehensive financial service institution, while spreading its foots print across Africa to earn greater reputation in the African banking industry.
Today, UBA Plc is one of the African’s leading financial institutions offering universal banking to more than seven million (7,000,000) customers across 750 branches in 14 African countries with assets in excess of nineteen billion US dollars ($l9bn).
UBA is the clear in the development of solutions across electronic channels in West Africa. As at 30th September, 2008 UBA had 1,256 Automated Teller Machines (ATM), 3,296 payment of service Machines (POS) deployed as some of the facility for e-marketing. During 2008, UBA processed 10% of the value of POS transaction in Nigerian market. In May 2009, UBA again pioneered the first Cash Deposit ATM in Nigeria. These successes will be extended to the rest of Africa.
UBA remains the only bank in Nigeria with a full electronic platform for payroll administration for corporate clients. Going beyond payment of salaries, bills, corporate are given a convenient secure electronic alternative to managing employees.
Some of the UBA e-marketing (e-banking) services include:
- U-Direct: Service that enables customers do their banking transaction via internet at the convenience of their offices and homes.
- U-Mobile: Allow customers/Subscribers to access their bank account information and other basic banking transaction via their GSM mobile phones anywhere in the country.
- E-Statement Service (ESS): An application that enables customers downloads their statement of account anywhere in the country and at any time needed.
- Pay Direct: Solution that allows corporate customers to handle electronic payments from any location.
- U-Pay: is a comprehensive human resource and payroll solutions designed to create value for all stakeholders in the salary administration value chain’
- U-Dividend Monitor: Allow corporate organization pay dividends to shareholders anywhere in the country.
- Dubai Visa Solution: This is online Dubai visa application service, visa payments, travel and reservation system for Dubai.