Social media is much more than a vehicle for delivering promotions and advertising. For financial services companies, whose profitability depends on maintaining customer relations through changing conditions, social media is an opportunity to create a mutually beneficial relationship with consumers. Correctly implemented, a unified social media strategy can result in a massively improved customer experience, which in turn leads to gains in profit and efficiency for companies.
Availability, accountability and reassurance: the benefits of social media for consumers are clear, but what about the benefits for financial service companies? There are four distinct areas where a well-designed social media strategy can support and enrich your business:
1. Increased Efficiency: Social Media can help banks centralize teams and target marketing spends, helping to make the most of existing resources. Financial institutions can also reduce operational costs by using social networks to crowdsource solutions.
2. Lead Generation: Brands can capture new business leads and revenue opportunities in social media which may not surface through other channels.
3. Innovation: Socially aware banks are already using social media to gain insight into how their customers behave in real-time, through social listening, moderation, and engagement. Companies can then use this data to target new products, services, and support.
4. Improved Brand Perception: Quick responses to customers on social media channels can help banks improve brand perception and drive long-term loyalty. This is an increasingly important consideration as social channels become venues for product discovery and consideration. Using social media strategy to nurture these online relationships can lead to real, offline relationships which in turn lead to greater loyalty, referral, and advocacy.
But what kind of customers are waiting in social media networks? A decade ago, social media was the preserve of teenagers and socialites, but modern social media is a great way to target some of the most desirable demographics: Mass Affluents (current investors with £60,000 – £600,000 in assets, excluding the value of their homes) have been found to be heavily engaged in social media, with over 84% using social media, 40% using social media to engage with financial companies, and 32% actively engaging with content created by financial companies.