We can agree that a well-executed public relations program is essential to reputation management, building brand awareness and nurturing leads. But, as good as your PR team may be, they can’t be successful alone. As plans form for 2021, companies are asking what they can do better or how they might approach their program differently.
We want to share with you the trends we see in the financial services industry, including important events and media input. As an agency, our goal is to help you. That is why we also post our financial PR and Marketing best practices and opinion articles as a resource for your company.
Owned media includes anything that is produced and housed on the company’s own channels, including its website, emails or social media platforms. Typically, this encompasses all content marketing activities. Owned media is not only crucial for SEO, it also helps position the company as a helpful resource. Companies have complete control over their owned media, enabling them to pivot quickly to create content about trending topics or emerging pain points.
How credit unions can invigorate their PR and marketing initiatives with a comprehensive media strategy
When it comes to public relations and marketing, everyone is looking for the big secret to successful initiatives—especially in this unique time where many organizations are either slashing their budgets, canceling campaigns or looking at their current programs differently to be efficient in both communication results and cost effectiveness.
Every organization will eventually face a crisis that could threaten its public reputation. Unfortunately many companies are unaware of what to do during a crisis or do not understand the basic elements of putting together a crisis communications plan.
When, not if, your company faces a crisis, it should have a well-developed crisis communications plan to address the situation in a meaningful way to deescalate any serious problems. Before developing your plan, be aware of the four most common pitfalls companies face when dealing with crises.
Three tips for communicating a trustworthy brand
It is said that trust is the most valuable thing you can earn. In financial services, it’s fundamental to success. Trust in financial institutions has been hard won since the 2008 financial crisis. And the financial services industry is not alone. Trust in institutions is wavering across all industries—just look at Facebook’s data scandal for proof. Rachel Botsman, world-renowned expert on trust, says this shaky ground is because institutional trust was not built for the digital age. However, there’s one truth that holds true over the ages: Trust between people is the glue that holds society together. This is where credit unions excel.
In the wake of one of the biggest data breaches to date, other companies are faced with the reality that data breaches continue to pose a threat and have increased over time in both size and intensity. But it's not just security breaches that companies need to worry about — sexual harassment scandals and political snafus are easily proliferated through social media. At any given moment, a crisis can occur, usually without warning. If not handled well, it could be a major blow to the company’s reputation. Here are five common mistakes when managing a PR crisis:
Many credit unions focus a significant part of their business model on community engagement. Being involved in local and community events gives credit unions the opportunity to further their brand recognition while actively engaging with existing and potential members—this can help establish, deepen and retain current member relationships while building new ones. However, as you continue to engage your community, it’s important to tackle each such engagement with a clear, integrated public relations and marketing strategy.
Your members are an integral part of your brand. Since they are already interacting with your CU to some degree, it’s important to develop a strategy focused on making the most of your investment before, during and after the event.
What is your credit union’s social media strategy and how will you manage it?
With social media setting a new standard for engagement and communication, credit unions are in a unique position to exceed member expectations and continue providing superior member service by utilizing social media tools, targeting specific audiences and varying content across their platforms.
Fostering member relationships shouldn’t end when members walk out the door or log off their mobile app. From checking Facebook updates to posting pictures on Instagram to perusing Tweets from their favorite celebrities, consumers are spending an average of two hours and 22 minutes on social networks every day, according to Digital Information World. This means that using social media to engage with your members can be key in continuing the conversation with them while also connecting with potential new members.
Most fintech public relations programs feature the proven components: press releases, social media campaigns, contributed articles, trade shows, etc. However, fintechs that fail to also include relevant award opportunities may be missing a significant piece of the puzzle. Awards are not only a great way to increase awareness, but also to provide a valuable piece of third-party validation that can be beneficial in nurturing leads and boosting sales.
In financial services, it’s important to note that not all awards are created equal, so your fintech should identify ones that deliver the most potential impact by highlighting the value proposition of your technology as well as your successful financial institution partnerships. It’s also important to pay careful attention to which organization is actually sponsoring an award. Those hosted by respected, well-known organizations and associations in the industry will tend to deliver the most impact.
Every organization, even the largest of companies, is subject to making public relations mistakes when responding to a crisis. As many have learned the hard way however, the most important factor is often how you respond. Ensuring your fintech’s public relations strategy includes a comprehensive crisis communications plan can help prevent a small mistake from turning into a much larger disaster that can erode customer trust. The latest white paper from William Mills Agency, Top 10 PR Nightmares of 2018, reviews PR mistakes made by some of the biggest companies in the world. Just one example that is highlighted is Lockheed Martin’s failed Twitter campaign.