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  • Subject area(s): Marketing
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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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Executive Summary

Moving towards the new generation era of technologies, RHB will be introducing new methods of approaching customers in all of the bank's services such as retail banking, business banking, transaction banking, investment banking and treasuries. We plan to launch a digital marketing strategy(DMS) as to remain competitive against well-established multinational competitors that includes local and foreign banks. We are targeting and emphasizing more on the retail marketing especially credit cards due to the change of trend purchases after the surveys have been conducted showing a huge and vast increment in online purchasings and payments via credit cards.

Our marketing priorities includes upgrading the services being provided as well as wide coverage to customers regardless of where their physical location is. Our research also proves that more digital supermarkets are being hosted and spread widely across the nation and also the world such as lazada, ebay and more to be list where these types of transactions are online transactions. Hence with these latest digital marketing strategy(DMS), we will be able to extend our services to all clients so long connected to the network. This will improvise and greatly boost the number of customers signing up with RHB bank and lead the bank to another step of technology transformation. For all product introductions, it will be hosted on our main corporate website where it will act as the main channel to deliver the latest info to our customers with latest yet new look and feel designs.


On 15th July 1913, the Kwong Yik Banking Corporation, Limited was established and started its business at the Old Market Square in Selangor. Several events occured that leads Kwong Yik Bank to an achievement where the first merger happens on 1997 in which Malayan Banking's share in Kwong Yik Bank was purchased by Rashid Hussain Bhd. The bank merged with DCB Bank ( formerly D&C Bank, established in 1966) and became the biggest bank merger in country's history that formed RHB Bank Berhad then as Malaysia's third largest financial services group. (RHB, 2016)

In the subsequent second year and six years later on, Sime Bank and Bank Utama merged  with RHB Bank to become part of the RHB Banking Group. Moving along the way to expand the services to ASEAN countries and Hong Kong, RHB Capital acquired OSK Investment Bank in year 2012. As of today, RHB has been servicing its customers for more than 100 years and currently under the sight of management by Dato Khairusalleh Ramli as the Chied Executive Officer and Managing Director since May 2015. (RHB, 2016)

RHB have different strategic business groups (SBGs) as to serve their customers accrding to their needs. Retail Marketing has been one of the most famous SBG where it serves the needs of retail customers through a wide range of products such as Secured and Unsecured Loans, Cards, Wealth Management, Hire Purchase and Insurance. (RHB, 2016)

Business Banking is one of the strategic group where commercal and SME customer can look for a comprehensice range of products related to their financing needs while Group Transaction Banking  comprises of Cash Management, FI & Correspondent Banking, Trades Services as well as  offering transaction-related services. (RHB, 2016)

Corporate & Investment Banking(CIB) offer corporate and investment banking servies, comprising asset management, equity and debt capital markets, private equity and research, finance advisory, corporate banking, securities and futures broking. CIB served large corporates across all industry types, multinational and public-listed companies.

Group International Business (GIB) covers RHB group's international commercial banking networks in Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Vietnam and Lao PDR with expansion plans into Myanmar which enables RHB to deliver a comprehensive range of financial services to its customers across ASEAN. (RHB, 2016)

Group Treasury manages the treasury functions of Commercial Bank, Investment Bank and Islamic Bank where its major activies includes hedging, managing funds and investment needs which covers a wide range of treasury products and services. (RHB, 2016)

In summary, RHB Group today consists of RHB Capital Berhad, RHB Bank Berhad, RHB Investment Bank Berhad, RHB Islamic Bank Berhad, RHB Insurance Berhad and RHB Asset Management Sdn Bhd with its own unique roles and responsibilities that contributes evenly to RHB Group's achievements. (RHB, 2016)


In macro-environment analysis, PESTEL analysis can be used as a strategy tool to figure out what are the factors that would impact RHB Group's operation in the current market situation. PESTEL analysis can be broken down in to the followings below:

a) Political factors

b) Economic factors

c) Social-cultural factors

d) Technological factors

e) Environmental factors

f) Legal factors

Political factors

RHB Group has been protected and sheltered by the policies and regulations made by different governments in different countries where the business conducted their operations. RHB has been able to accomodate and abide by the the policies agreed by each government as to ensure the bank to be able to accomplish business operations effectively and successfully without any hinders. Aside to governmental restrictions and limitations, RHB also formulates its own defence strategies. (SlideShare, 2012)

Economic factors

Being the forth largest Malaysian banks by market capitalisation of USD5.8 billion as of May 2015 and completive businesses in conditions of banking and finance, RHB is said to have a secure and successful economic strength.(Wikipedia, 2015) Despite the downturn of economy in year 2015, RHB Group still remains to generate a positive net profit of RM 1.5 billion. (RHB, 2016) Despite of the challenges and dangers that RHB met in many parts of the financial instituitions rivals across countries, the management of RHB has performed on what need to be done to be able to go beyond such struggles yet to have an improved economic condition.

Social-cultural factors

RHB Group is being affected by the circumstances of the society in which they are in use. RHB witnesses the certain changes and growing awareness in the field of financial sector. By the side of this, RHB Group tries harder to ensure that each society is given the same changes to obtain the benefit of resources given by the organization. RHB Group adhere to have a good reputation and relations in the society with proven records of over 100 years of service. (Ijeronline, 2011)

Technological factors

RHB Group encounter an urgent situation of information technology whereby internet and the general improvements of technology effects how RHB has been working in the past years. RHB searches for different systems and used internet to get to their customers all over the place and also to help itself to know latest trends in the global business. Except from these, RHB also uses special facilities which helps the organization to advance their productions and operations which allows them to achieve the goals set. Technology breakthroughs can create new industries which might prove a danger to presented organizations.

Environmental factors

Global warming has been made aware that ecological disaster will happen if nothing has been done. As a part of the organization that is environmental friendly, it has gone going green as much as possible. Recyclable wastes and minimized energy consumption are always the first priority. Furthermore nowadays large number of peoples prefer products that are friendly to the environment for example paperless statements. Aside to that all firms are required to meet certain standards that helps to reduce any adverse effects or impacts to the environment. ( Small Business, 2016)

Legal factors

In financial institutions, customers always aim for the low spending and high returns hence, there is a need for vertical and horizontal price fixing as to ensure all parties are protected against unfair competitions. In oligopolistic industry, Cartel agreement arises where its aim is to reduce competition and increase individual members' profit.

In short these analysis can be summarized as shown below fro macro-environment analysis:


• Political stability affects business decision.

• Government is responsible for protecting the public interest.

• Regulations of business activities.

• Consumer protection. ECONOMIC

• Competition for resources

• Competitor activity

• Savings


• Trends in consumer behaviours.

• Lifestyle.

• Leisure.

• Work life balance. TECHNOLOGY

• Technology develops new products (internet).

• Technological arrange is speeding up.

• Internet business.

• Improved communication.


• Environmental regulations

• Environmental friendly LEGAL

• Protection from unfair competition

• Ensures fair trade and credit practises

• Cartel

 Table 1 : Macro-environment analysis using PESTEL Analysis

In micro-environment analysis, PORTER's 5 forces would be best used to analyze the environment in which it consists of :

a) Potential entrants

b) Bargaining power of customers

c) Threat of substitutes

d) Bargaining power of suppliers

e) Rivalry among current competitors

Potential entrants

The biggest barrier of entry in banking industry will be trust. New banks find it difficult to set up due to the industry deals with other people's money and financial information. Looking into the business nature of the industry, people are more willing to place their trust in big name, well known, major banks who they consider to be worthy. The banking industry has undergone a consolidation in which major banks seek to serve all of a customer's financial needs under their roof. This consolidation furthers the role of trust as a barrier to entry for new banks looking to compete with major banks as customers are more likely to allow one bank to hold all their accounts and service their financial needs. Therefore it is fairly easy for RHB to open up a smaller bank operating on regional level as it is nearly impossible for new banks to enter the industry offering the trust and a full range of services as a major bank as the firm only has to factor in the government licensing and regional countries regulatory.

Bargaining power of customers

An organization created a value which has affected the occupation from one of the two important forces customers’ power. This force plays a role in containing the customers concentration along with the size. In short, RHB managed their customers as a result of allowing the company to gain customer trust and loyalty. This strategy helps RHB to remain competitive in the banking industry due to it can be a hassle upon trying to convince customers whom had their banking needs such as mortgage, loans, savings and etc; to switch to another bank although lower price offers were offered.

Threat of substitutes

In banking industry, the largest threat of substitution are not from competitor banks but from non-financial competitors. RHB faces a significant threat where the competitors provide new products and services as far as deposits or withdrawals, insurances, mutual funds and fixed income securities in which RHB has these identical products. The competitors often times offer a lower interest rates on payments then the consumers would otherwise get from a traditional bank loan and services. This threat however gives the opportunity to RHB to work hard as a result of being sustain to its position.

Bargaining power of suppliers

The power of the suppliers is largely based on the market where their power is often considered to fluctuate between medium to high where in the case here will be customers power. This force focuses on two important points that is the significant size and concentration of suppliers and the differentiation in materials being supplied. Capital is the primary resources on any bank and there are four major supplier of capital in the industry which is customer deposits, mortgage and loans, mortgage-baked securities and loans from other financial institutions. Utilizing these four major supplies, RHB can be sure that the necessary resources required to service customers borrowing needs are made available yet maintaining enough capital to meet withdrawal expectations.

Rivalry among current competitors

In banking industry, competitions are considered high as there are many rivals in the banking and financial sectors. RHB used efficient strategies to ensure its leadership position in the market among rivalries. Moreover, due to the capabilities of other rival companies, RHB develops strategic plans to confirm that they are permanently being the first choice of their customers in banking industries as the banking competition is often a race to determine which financial institution can offer the best and fastest service to clients. Nowadays, as RHB cross the mountain of financial crisis, a number of banks went to liquidation due to banks experiences in lowering the return of assets in order to secure the deals.

3.0 SWOT Analysis

3.1  Strength

Acquisition of OSK Investment Bank has further strengthened the RHB Banking Group's ASEAB footprint. It indirectly gave chances for the collaboration of experienced business units to allow the group to strive further. RHB Group is now present in eight countries including  Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Lao PDR and Hong Kong (with a representative office in China) which increases its customer base. The acquisition also allowed the Group to leverage on the comparative strengths of both OSK Investment Bank Berhad and the RHB Banking Group to deliver more value to customers with its skilled workforce. There has been over 17000 people being a part of the bank providing custmers across South East Asia banking solution. RHB Banking Groups existing distribution and sales networks includes retail banking, corporate banking and Islamic banking. (RHB, 2016)

3.2  Weakness

RHB Group earnings fell on realised net loss on revaluation of financial investments available-for-sale or known as Automated Financial System(AFS) which indirectly states the weakness in invenstments on research and development. In the current competitive market, RHB lac of advertisement and promotions in comparisons to other major banks such as HSBC, Citibank and it has less activities when compared to the other competitors. RHB also performed poorly in the online banking field especially in user friendlines of their applications. Some other unknown factors also contributed to the weakness factors where RHB emphasizes on small business units. (Bloomberg, 2016)

3.3  Opportunities

On 14th March 2016, Malaysia signs bank access agreement with Thailand and Philippines (Reuters, 2016). This indirectly opens a great opportunity to RHB Banking Group to expand its access to Philippines and to remainng ASEAN markets where it is not present currently. Upon that, by acquiring PT Bank Mestika in Indonesia, it will create an opportunity in expanding its domestic presence. In the relevant to new products and services, RHB Group has also firmly embraced the "Digital World" and needs to intensify its efforts to drive the presence in social networking sites. (Bernama, 2015)

3.4  Threats

Challenges were faced back in year 2012 by the Malaysian Retail Banking sectors due to the implementation of prudent lending practises. Potential threats could arise from the competition among the Malaysian banks where the strategies and policies executed by other competitors are not monitored in which these should be studied closely and carefully yet fast with effective actions. With the vast competitions across, profitabilites could be lowered whenever there is a sudden change in price. Apart from that, economic crisis all over the world have effected every financial insitute all over the world and RHB is truly not an exception, therefore appropriate steps must be taken to minimize the losses. New global policies that designated to make the financial sector to be more secure somehow implies a warning on the future profitibility to be affected. (Scribd, 2012)

Below is the summary of the SWOT analysis:


• Experienced business units

• High growth rate

• Skilled workforce

• High profitability and revenue

• Domestic market

• existing distribution and sales networks WEAKNESS

• Investments in research and development

• Competitive market

• High loan rates are possible

• Small business units

• Unknown


• Income level is at a constant increase

• Venture capital.

• New markets

• New products and services THREATS

• Growing competition and lower profitability

• Government regulations

• Price changes

• Unexpected problems

• Increase in labour costs

• External business risks

Table 2 : Micro-environment analysis using Porters 5 force model


RHB Banking Group's mission and goal is to be a leading multinational financial services groups. RHB is commited to deliver complete solutions to their clients through differentiated segment offerings and an ecosystem that supports simple fast and seamless customer experience, underpinned by cohesive and inspired workforce and relationship built with stakeholders. There are four main pillars being practised by RHB aligned with the roadmap to achieve its goals. (RHB, 2016)

The very first main pillar is being a trusted partner. With over a hundred yearrs of experience in serving customers, RHB best assured that it have clients best interests at heart. RHB are constantly striving to innovate and customise inhouse solutions to help clients achieve their goals in which trusts are build through relationships and RHB desires to meet clients personal and financial advisory needs. (RHB, 2016)

With being a trusted partner, delivering a simple, fast and seamless solutions is next. In the over hundred years of experience in serving customers, RHB are constantly innovating to provide simple, fast and seamless solutions where it allows dealing in various segments in RHB customers yet believing in making things simple and giving clients on what they need as of when it is needed. (RHB, 2016)

RHB makes use of the past over hundred years of experience in providing solutions to help clients achieve their goals and help to chart out a sustainable future. RHB products and services are designed to support clients and clients business requirements so that they can focus on what truly matters. (RHB, 2016)

RHB aims to nurture future generations and are constantly striving to create a sustainable future into the next 100 years by cherishing the potential of today's children and empowering them for a sustainable and better tomorrow.

In summary, RHB visions to be among top three financial instituitions in Malaysia and top eight ASEAN by the year 2020 and the very first objective is to improvise the vital asset in this road which would be the Information Technology and IT related services which RHB's providing to the customers. With that, second objective comes in place in having a strong market leadership in Malaysia across targeted products and segments. Next would be regional powerhouse in ASEAN+ (includes Greater China)  where 40% revenue contribution will be from international operations. Another objective would be the next generation customer centric bank where it delivers innovative and personalized customer offerings. Last but not least would be becoming a prominent employer of the choice within the region. (RHB, 2016)


5.1  Segmentation

Traditionally, RHB segmentation is based on the types of customer that is personal segment, business segment and the wealth management segment. All these three types of segment can be classified under demographic segmentation. Demographic variables such as age, gender, income, occupation, education, religion, race, generation, family life cycle, family size, nationality and social class are so popular with marketers because of it is often associated with consumer needs and wants yet easy to be measured.

Consumer wants and abilities change with age. For example the income and spending power of an adult grows significantly in according to their age grows which then changes their life cycle indirectly. On the other variable gender, men and women tend to have different attitudinal and behavioural orientations, based partly on genetic makeup and partly on socialization. With this, we will be exploiting on income and family lifecycles.

Income segmentation has been a long standing practise in categories such as automobiles, clothings, cosmetics, financial services and travel. Income segmentation may not predict best customers for product but it plays a big role and accuracy in financial services. The ability to spend and invest on financial services easily tracked. Hence that is why for example credit card limits are given to individuals according to their income.

Family lifecycles variable can be further break down into another 5 segments:

a) starting out

b) double income, no kids

c) first home buyers

d) established families

e) retirees

Older teenager or young adults are usually the people who falls under starting out segment. In this stage of their life, they only have a need for relatively simple financial products such as a savings account and credit card. Evolving from time to time, they may start investing small or need of a small loan. In terms of the family life cycle stage, they are either not in a serious relationship or single and usually do not need complicated financial products or making large purchases.

The next stage will be the newly wed couples or when the consumer forms a serious relationship known as double income, no kids. This will trigger them the need to start saving more or looking into short-term investment for example into stock brokings or buying shares or even loaning larger amount to go on a holiday or purchasing motor vehicle. In this stage, there are no children in the relationship which means they can continue with rentings without any emotional pressure to get a property.

On the other hand as for first home buyers, it is usually those consumers in a serious relationship or married with young childrens. It is when the time has come for them to start a family which indeed most of their regular purchases change significantly and indirectly changes their financial needs. This cycle is important for a bank as the young family usually is motivated to purchase a property and will transform the customer from being a low-value customer to a medium or high-value customer through one large loan transaction.

As for the established families, there are older childrens and usually parents are still working either full or part time. At this stage, their needs on loans and mortgages typically shifts to investment accounts or even business loans as they are starting to build some wealth or significantly pay off their property.

Last will be retirees whereby they no longer generate incomes from employment. As a result, there is a limited potential to increase their attractiveness to bank but they are the key targets for long-term and loyal business which generally their financial needs shifted from loans towards retirement accounts and savings products.

5.2  Targeting

RHB Banking group currently targets the SME segment which it has already proven to the market on the outcome of the products and services sold. Hence in this marketing plan, we will target the low-value and medium-value customers. Building trusts and relationships in earlier stage brings benefit to RHB, as there are potentials these customers will be a loyal customer and continued their planned journey with RHB on the products and services made available. This low and medium-value customers eventually falls under the starting out, double income,no kid and first home buyers.

The primary target will be on starting out segment where graduates have just started their first jobs. They indeed will need savings account and if possible credit cards. Due to the improvement of technologies, most of the products are sold on market online. With that, credit cards and debit cards will be the first choice of usage in performing all these transactions online. Not only that credit cards and debits come in handy during deperate time or emergencys where the Bank do provides certain extra facilities such as cash in advance with certain rate charges.

The secondary target will be double income, no kids segment. This range of target are the portential young investors who could become or transform into SME which has always been RHB's main target. These are the range of customers who started their investments early such as shares, stock brokings, foreign exchanges and other investment types.

The tertiary target will be the first home buyers , where the customers started to change their types of purchases from small to medium and medium to large. Within this target, credit cards and debit cards could no longer support their financial needs but indeed bigger loans offers such as housing loans, personal loans, hire purchase loans kicks in.

5.3  Positioning

According to Kotler and Keller (2016) , positioning is the act of designing a company’s offering and to occupy a distinctive and unique perception in the mind of target market. RHB positions its market in financial services and solutions for the nations of Malaysia. A good positioning  has one foot in the present and one in the future as it needs somehow inspirational so that the brand or the product has room to grow and improvise. Successful creation of a customer-focused value proposition, a convincing reason on why the target market should acquire the product or a service is one of the results of positioning.

Marketers often prepares perception positioning map in their planning their differences and position strategies therefore the perceptual map of RHB Groups products are shown as below:

Diagram 1: Perceptual map of RHB products and services

RHB has been serving its customer for more than 100 years of service with lots of loyal customers based on trust relationships. This indirectly shows RHB has positioned itself in a manner that the products and services provided to its customers are at this highest quality at all times.

With new positioning, RHB will be expecting to  build a new relationship with new customers who have just embarked into the corporate world. Understanding customer needs in early basis is one of the way to get to know more of customers before providing more services that is relevant to the customers area of interest and this requires a lot of patience and anaysis skills.



  Credit Cards

List of types of credit cards


Reward Points


 advertisements, digital branding, corporate website, DMS new strategy


campaigns, promotions , events, vouchers,



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