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Social media is like that dreaded pile of unfolded laundry that stares at you when you walk into your bedroom. You know it’s there. You know it would benefit you to tackle it and organize everything, but you just can’t bring yourself to do it. Just like laundry, leaving your social media where it is can really stink, but it doesn’t have to.

It’s not the burden you think it is – laundry or social media. I’m here to tell you why you should care, and how can social media drive member engagement, retention, and revenue.

Meet your members where they are

It’s all about access and communication. From online banking, mobile apps, and interactive teller machines, credit unions are providing channels for members to access their accounts and credit union at speeds we’ve never seen before. Social media is no exception. According to Our World in Data, in the US alone, adults are spending more than six hours a day on digital media with over half of that time spent on mobile devices. Furthermore, social media platforms are used by one in three people in the world. Why? Not only is it a way to connect with community and culture, it’s accessible by anyone with access to the internet.

Your brand and voice can be heard

Your members are owners and have bought in to your community. You can use social media to reinforce your values, what you stand for, and remind members why they joined in the first place. It establishes your credit union as an entity people can relate to and helps differentiate you from the competition. You can also build trust and inspire your employees to promote your company culture. This can bring you the talent you need to continue to build that company culture.

You can listen to what members are really saying

Social listening is a crucial part of creating a successful social marketing campaign. You can see what your members and other people are saying about the financial industry, credit unions, FinTechs, and your credit union. In fact, it is so easy that by not participating in the social conversation, you’re defaulting to “doesn’t care” in the eyes of your community. Use this information to create a more targeted campaign, learn from competition, and resolve problems you might not know your institution had.

Related: How to Fix Your Marketing in Five Easy Steps

The added data is invaluable

Sure, knowing your database information is great, but what if you could learn your members’ hobbies and interests? What if you could take that information and create a targeted ad for them? All of this added data is essential to developing your buyer personas and is not available in your database. When looking at data, remember that what doesn’t get measured doesn’t get managed. But be sure to know what data is important to you and is not simply categorized as a vanity metric. Measure what matters, I assure you the data is vast and actionable.

Don’t forget a social media policy

One of the most important steps to starting on your social media journey is to create a social media policy. This could include approval processes for posts, how you will respond to members on platforms, or even what employees can post and say about the credit union. Setting a standard at the start of your credit union’s social journey and preparing your team for a variety of scenarios will make future social communication a breeze.

Time to dust off those accounts

Social media is an ever-evolving opportunity to connect to members where they connect with others and remind them why they joined in the first place. You can control the conversation, gather feedback, and increase engagement by leveraging these free, user-friendly platforms. Use the data to supplement your marketing campaigns and enhance member experience. I am bullish about the future of credit union growth through social channels, and you should be too. Get moving on these platforms – and maybe after that you can tackle the laundry.

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