Social Media is now much, much more than an occasional Tweet and Facebook post. The game has changed and in the commodity of the financial world, where there is literally a financial planner or bank on every corner, we need a competitive edge.
Websites are typically static, presenting information in a uniform way that doesn’t permit consumer feedback and interaction. They are information depots at best and may be able to capture some lead info. By definition, a social media community promotes two-way communication. This two-way discussion offers tremendous potential and occasionally danger. Bottom line, social media gives us direct access to our consumer. Access like we have never had before.
Now, more than ever, consumers are taking control of every facet of their purchases. Customers research, probe and trust the opinion of strangers more than that of our brand. They are talking to their friends and reading online reviews. That means we must pay attention and listen.
All of this means that a social media should have a strategy and any campaign should be carefully planned, vetted, executed and measured. If not you will find yourself in trouble or lagging way behind.
There are opportunities to be better and here are four of them.
- Each platform is different and must be treated as such.
We see companies creating one message and then posting it across all platforms. Using the same copy and identical image on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are frankly lazy because audiences are different and use the platforms for very different reasons.
While consumers follow businesses on Facebook, they typically access the platform for social purposes. They like to share and engage in conversations, and 60% of users are 35 or older. On the other hand, LinkedIn is a peer to peer social network for businesses and job seekers. Moreover, get this: 80% of LinkedIn members are 30 years or older. Instagram skus 18-40 and Google is for anyone with a smartphone. http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/social-media/
The moral? Facebook and LinkedIn are home to widely diverse audiences that want (and expect) unique information and experiences. Your messages—purpose, text, and images—should be distinct for each of your social media platform communities, including Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and others.
It is essential to spend time considering and creating a specific brand voice and then to distinguish it on your chosen platforms. You might want to be fun and lively on Facebook, but more sedate on LinkedIn. Also, you are likely to get a better response if your online communities experience graphic identities that will differentiate you from competitors.
Visual content and video content is better! We are all drawn to infographics, and we enjoy watching patient testimonials. Infographics help simplify complex subjects such as insurance plan options and various ailments. More than 90% of marketers are using video in their campaigns, and for a good reason. https://www.inc.com/springboard/3-essential-marketing-videos-every-business-needs.html?cid=search
Oh yeah! It is 2018, USE VIDEO! It is relatable, connects your brand and consumers like it. Nearly 50% of us take action after watching a video.
- Not being buttoned up
Financial businesses need have their legal act together. Regulations are in place everywhere. They are designed to protect consumer’s rights and privacy. Like the medical industry, it is not wise to feature a customer in either in text or photograph—without their approval.
We suggest that financial companies take the time to create a comprehensive and unified social media content approval system. We recommend that after a plan has been established, that that plan been reviewed and approved by in-house counsel.
- Stop using social media to promote
Banks love to talk about themselves. Credit Unions bombard us with features and benefits, non-stop. However, on social media, consumers do not care and rarely remember. Everyone has a financial institution already, a free $100 from Chase.com is not likely worth the headache to switch.
Instead, begin telling stories. Share customer testimonials and weave into the “news.” Rather than announcing a service, allow a customer to tell a story about how they used and enjoyed a service. True, this takes more work, and it is exponentially more difficult. Acquiring content can take a long time, but the authenticity of the story is worth it. BIG TIME!. It is ok occasionally, but like Gary Vee emphatically states, “give, give, give and when you want to ask, give once more.” https://www.garyvaynerchuk.com/giving-without-expectation/
- Ignoring the perils of live content
Get live and do it now. Don’t be scared; it works really really well. Facebook Live, which debuted in April 2016 single-handedly built many an empire. Many businesses have rushed into the broadcast business and why not? Facebook Live permits companies to promote themselves immediately and compellingly. It bypasses traditional media. That can be a positive thing, and the price is right.
Uncertainty is inherent in anything live. Things can go wrong. Your spokesperson can make a mistake. Your customer or patient might say something unflattering. Moreover, people watching can easily post an ugly comment. Fortunately, you have the opportunity to delete the content if it is terrible or risky.
Simply put, the Social Media game is complex. Let us review your digital footprint. In one hour, we can provide a detailed report and suggestions for improving image and create storytelling suggestions for most major platforms: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and Google.
Today, the digital footprint is the most essential and cost-effective tool we have to build our brand and connect with customers. Get serious about it.
The C2C story is unique. We just love helping businesses reinvent themselves through storytelling on social media. We would love to help you.
Find out more here: https://2completion.com
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2018 – Protect Your Brand, Project Your Brand