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What's keeping me up: HSBC HK's Cheuk Shum

What's keeping me up: HSBC HK's Cheuk Shum

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From the recent brand campaign that empowers Hongkongers to move forward, to an art exhibition on fraud prevention, HSBC has strived to push its creativity beyond boundaries, and at the same time place the brand at the forefront of the industry.  

This also aligns with the mindset of Cheuk Shum, managing director, head of marketing, wealth and personal banking, HSBC Hong Kong, who oversees full-funnel marketing strategies across the segment continuum, from HSBC One and Premier to Private Banking, to deliver brand priorities and business growth.  

While the future is full of unknowns, Shum believes in taking the right risks and experimenting with new things to resonate with the audience as time passes. With rapidly evolving trends in the marketing world, Shum always embraces new challenges to create new opportunities and possibilities.  

In this episode, Shum shares with us his biggest worry during his time as a marketing leader and what keeps him going.

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: What is the biggest thing you worry about?  

That customers don’t find us relevant anymore and we are becoming too complacent and not willing to take smart risks or experiment with new things. 

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: How do you deal with this worry?  

We have been experimenting a lot since last year to find out what truly resonates with our customers and make a stronger impact.

One example is our anti-fraud exhibition which aims to educate Hongkongers about different types of scams, which successfully attracted more than 25,000 visitors. This is something that has a much stronger impact compared to more traditional media.  

Also – we continue to offer our customers bespoke and experience-led initiatives driven by customer data and insight. Our team and I attend a lot of conferences to hear from other marketers and learn from them what customers are looking for nowadays. 

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: As a leader, how do you deal with it when your staff tells you the work is creating mental pressure and well-being issues?  

We must always create the confidence and trust for our team to confide in us when they face issues. It is also important for us to observe any stress in the teams proactively, not always relying on them to approach us. We must then need to understand where the stress is coming from, whether it is workload, unreasonable timelines or maybe roadblocks we can help them with. It is important for us to refer them to professional help and keep the conversation private. 

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: What keeps you going?  

Customer advocacy and brand association. This will remain the guiding light for us as we strive to further expand our customer base.

As the CMO at WPB, I have a mission to demonstrate that HSBC HK is walking at the forefront to provide everyone in Hong Kong with trendy, relevant, meaningful, and truly customer-centric solutions and services. 

Four years ago, our NPS (Net Promotor Score) was -27, where only one in seven customers were our promoters. Today, one in four customers are our promoters and we are the only bank with such a great achievement in the NPS space. We are the only brand in the banking industry with a positive NPS. 

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: How do you boost employee morale when facing obstacles/challenges? 

I always think having a nice meal would help. It often helps to go through the problem statement with the team once more, what’s it that we are trying to solve and whether there are alternative solutions. When we roll up our sleeves with the team, it often helps and demonstrates our support. 

MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: Anything else you would like to add? 

Marketers need to be open to changes. With all these new trends popping up every moment, marketers have to go beyond boundaries to embrace new concepts to elevate the brand. It could also mean partnering with brands outside of customers’ expectations.

In the workplace, being open means empowering team members to thrive as intrapreneurs, and take charge of their own careers, it also means listening to direct feedback from all levels of staff, regardless of their seniority in the organisation. 

Join us this coming 26 June for Content360 Hong Kong, a one-day-two-streams extravaganza under the theme of "Content that captivates". Get together with our fellow marketers to learn about AI in content creation, integration of content with commerce and cross-border targeting, and find the recipe for success within the content marketing world! 

Related articles:

What's keeping me up: McDonald's HK's Tina Chao
HSBC HK unveils art exhibition on fraud prevention
HSBC empowers HKers to move forward with brand campaign

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