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Filene Report To CUs: Create Community, Integrated Social Media Presence
MADISON, Wis. (11/8/13)--"You don't win in social media just by showing up. While using Facebook or Twitter might have been buzzworthy in 2009, today's members are not impressed with mere presence. If they don't sense a purpose in your efforts, they will not pay attention." So says a new study from the Filene Research Institute.
Many credit unions are discovering that deep member engagement with social media comes only after a lot of work, said Filene's report, "From Presence to Purpose: Developing Social Media Strategies and Metrics for Credit Unions."  It studied 157 credit unions with social media programs.  Its conclusion:  Credit unions need to create community and an integrated social media presence.
Of the 157 credit unions studied, nearly 40% are "prospectors" who stake a social media claim but don't do much with it; more than half are "flirts," who approach social media sporadically, without long-term commitment, and 10% are "settlers" who stick around and finish what they started. Seven percent become MacGyvers, able to use a variety of tools to accomplish their social media goals.
The study's authors, Hope Jensen Schau, Ph.D.,  of the University of Arizona and Per Ivar Schau of the Carondelet Health Network, address two pressing challenges for credit unions:
  • Integrating legacy marketing/member service relationships with social media. This involves educating credit union decision makers about the role and purpose of social media and how it interconnects with the credit union's overall strategic branding decisions. This includes moving from a minimal social media presence to an active, value-added social media engagement; identifying and engaging the appropriate member base; and incorporating measurements of success.
  • Addressing the often missed credit union opportunity of data gathering and analysis. This entails developing appropriate metrics against which social media strategies can be evaluated. Using metrics and dashboards to access social media strategies and branding efforts helps resource-constrained employees locate quick strategic wins, said the report.
The report noted that all credit unions studied have unique websites, some with specific branch websites. Nearly all have member login prompts that lead to online banking systems from the corporate landing page. About half the credit unions surveyed use Twitter and YouTube, while 93% have at least one Facebook presence. Roughly 16% of those studied have blogs devoted to the credit union. The credit unions' most effective engagement strategy was with Twitter, which suggests credit unions may benefit from devoting more time and attention to social media strategies using Twitter.
The study recommended that credit unions looking to effectively use social media should work on creating community, use social media platforms for their respective strengths, support value-creating practices and encourage member-generated content.
For more information from the report, use the link.
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