A Guide to Managing Social Media Engagement for Financial Organisations
There was a time, not so many years ago, when a message from your bank popping up on your computer monitor would have been downright unwelcome. When befriending your bank on a social network was unthinkable. Complain to your bank and get a written personal response in minutes? Don't make us laugh ...
Even as recently as a year ago, Thefinancialbrand.com published Why Social Media Is a Waste of Time for Most Banks & Credit Unions, arguing that social media is useless for the financial sector.
Well, as we know, that's all changing. Banks and other financial institutions are becoming increasing social: because they have to (customers are demanding it) and because they want to (win our custom by engaging with us).
Banks can see the benefits of social media for:
- Customer Service (for example, the @askciti Twitter account)
- Research and Development (in the way that First Direct uses its First Direct Lab to develop and road test new products)
- Insight - what better way to learn what your customers are saying about you?
- Recruitment (JP Morgan’s Facebook community gives potential employees sneak preview)
- Sharing information, for example about your corporate responsibility programme
- Creating brand ambassadors
- Reaching a younger audience, as HSBC does so successfully with its Facebook student programme.
But it's a steep learning curve for financial organisations: learning how to work within the tightly regulated environment; how to set rules for their communities; how to control staff social media use; learning how to accept and respond to criticism; moderate and engage.
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