Square Marketing Strategy: a brief overview

By John Dudovskiy
September 27, 2021

As a financial unicorn, Square was able to develop an effective ecosystem of payments products and services and gain an international acclaim. An effective marketing strategy plays an important role behind the phenomenal rise of the fintech. Sales and marketing expenses for the year ended December 31, 2019, increased by USD213.7 million, or 52%, compared to the year ended December 31, 2018. Total advertising costs for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020, were USD85.9 million and USD36.2 million[1], respective.

Square Inc. Marketing Strategy


Square marketing strategy is based on the following principles:

1. Effective use of Freebies. Square offers peer-to-peer money transfer service to its Cash App customers for free as a marketing strategy. This strategy encourages extensive usage of Cash App which includes Cash Card among other features.

2. Reliance on Referrals as a marketing strategy. According to Square’s Referral Program if a customer refers her friend, both benefit from rewards. Rewards include credits on processing fees up to USD1.000 in sales over the next six months and discounts for certain type of products.[2] This program effectively contributes to the overall volume of revenues.

3. Attractive design of products. Square products are designed in a minimalistic, yet attractive manner. Designers at the B2B fintech are given a great degree of autonomy and they prioritise simplicity in their work. Square card readers, terminals, register and accessories usually attract customers’ attention due to their slick design and they effectively contribute to the overall design of small and medium business premises they are used by.

4. Content marketing. Focusing on content marketing on the basis of customer stories is one of the main pillars of Square marketing strategy. “The Square marketing team targeted tech- and social-media-savvy shop owners in the Bay Area, and these early customers helped them spread the word”[3] Nowadays, there are countless success stories circulating in social media where small businesses were able to increase their revenues significantly thanks to using Square products and services. Content marketing allows the payments company to spread the word about its products and services globally in a cost-effective manner.

Square Inc. Report contains the above analysis of Square marketing strategy. The report illustrates the application of the major analytical strategic frameworks in business studies such as SWOT, PESTEL, Porter’s Five Forces, Value Chain analysis, Ansoff Matrix and McKinsey 7S Model on Square. Moreover, the report contains analyses of Square leadership, organizational structure and organizational culture. The report also comprises discussions of Square business strategy, ecosystem and addresses issues of corporate social responsibility.

Square Inc. Report 2021.

[1] Quarterly Report Q1, 2021, Square Inc.

[2] Square’s Referral Program (2021) Square, Available at: https://squareup.com/help/us/en/article/5209-square-s-referral-program

[3] Roth, L (n.d.) “Square’s Marketing Strategy: How it Built a Sustainable Growth Machine” Alexa Blog, Available at: https://blog.alexa.com/square-marketing-strategy/

Category: Marketing