An Analysis of Factors Influencing the Brand Choice of A Bank among Small and Medium Enterprises Based in Nairobi.
Mayende, John Kennedy
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In today's financial services marketplace characterized by the emergence of deposit taking microfinance institutions and savings and credit organizations, banks need to set up effective ways to stay ahead on competition. Depending on the key market segment, banks have increasingly offered new products, varied the product pricing in some occasions and invested in branding. The purpose of this thesis was to investigate the factors that influence medium enterprises perceive in the brand choice of bank for obtaining financial services. The study contains literature review which includes the relevant theory and empirical review or studies done by other scholars that this research is based on. To fulfill the purpose, this research was investigative in nature thus applied a descriptive research design. The target population was small and medium enterprises located within the Ngara shopping centre in Nairobi and accessing financial services from banks. Data was collected from a sample of 72 respondents out of the target population. Both primary and secondary data were used. The obtained data was carefully analyzed using descriptive analysis and inferential statistics. The study found that the most influencing factors for brand choice of a bank by SME are related to awareness, associations and attitude towards the brand of the bank. A personal relationship with the bank is the most important part according to the findings in this research. However, it is notable that the bank sector of today is moving further away from a personal relationship with customers. The number of electronic touch points has increased in Kenya over the last decade to the extent that deposit transactions can be made through automated teller machines. The study also revealed that Internet banking is on the rise. This presents the risk that customers may feel less connection and loyalty to the bank as the personal relationship disappears. Banks should make customers feel something about doing business with them . The study recommends that commercial banks should embrace personal relationship with the customers as it is an important part that will help them in creating their brand awareness, improve association and increase the customer attitude towards their product. The study also recommends that commercial banks in Kenya should alter the perceptions and create consumer preference for a particular bank, calls for similar branding strategy employed in traditional packaged goods. The established regression equation was Y = 1.961 + 0.493 Xi + 0.314 X2 + 0.267 X3 ± 0.453 X4 + 0.374 X5. This shows that there is a positive relationship between brand choice of a bank and brand awareness, brand association, brand loyalty, activity and brand attitude. From the regression analysis the study found that there was a strong correlation between the study variable as shown by correlation coefficient (R) of 0.891.