Having worked in marketing within the banking industry for 2 years, as social media started to really evolve, I have had the ability to see how it works first hand. Within the banking industry, social media has been a slow moving trend to reach consumers in the marketplace. The highly regulated industry has caused delays in implementing social media for the large, nationally recognized banks, putting this industry at the bottom of the list when it comes to leveraging social media.
The power of social media will have significant impact on the way financial services conduct business; this can have a transformational impact in their corporate thinking and marketing capabilities. From connecting directly with end customers, or engaging with employees, to collaborating with partners, social media provides a significant value proposition that companies ignore at their peril. As stakeholders increasingly adopt social technologies, the potential of social media can help companies grow customer loyalty, accelerate growth, and unleash their potential (Perlasamy, 2011). This opportunity banks can leverage is important for them to understand, and using social media securely given all of the regulations, is one of the most important things for baking industry marketers to understand in its entirety.
Within my current position at a nationally recognized bank that is to remain anonymous, I have seen the regulations that come first hand with trying to incorporate social media into a banks marketing plan. The consumer bank engages in social media through Facebook and Twitter, where as my particular line of business within the larger bank itself, only engages in Twitter right now. Both social media platforms, allow for a lot of communication with consumers so protecting the bank and its reputation is important. All Tweets must be approved by legal and branding compliance before anything can be Tweeted. This allows for the bank to make sure they are covered in terms of meeting branding standards and legal requirements. It can be very tricky, as consumers can take one thing you say and turn it around and have it mean another. We want to make usre that we are covered on all ends and provide Twitter updates that are appropriate for the targeted audience, are communicated properly and are timely.
Given the strict regulations within banks, our social media capabilities are limited, but continuing to evolve as our marketing teams understand all of the aspects that go into Tweeting informative and secure Tweets so consumers don’t come back with a different idea than we intended to share.
Perlasamy, S. (2011). Technology Insights for the Financial Industry. From Infosys: http://www.infosys.com/FINsights/Documents/pdf/issue9/social-media-financial-services-risk-reward.pdf