In a recent #bankonsocial Twitter Chat, moderated by WMA-client Kasasa® by BancVue®, we discussed how financial institutions can leverage social media to amplify their PR efforts. This topic continues to be of tremendous interest to banks, credit unions, fintech providers, influencers and others, as demonstrated by the discussion’s “trending” status on Twitter last week.
For those who couldn’t join, we’ve got you covered! The following questions and answers from last week’s Twitter Chat provide helpful guidance on how to thoughtfully use social media for PR.
Q: Who are local influencers that every institution should follow?
A: Media is crucial and normally the biggest influencers on Twitter. Specifically, follow anyone who writes about your company or your competitors. Use platforms such as Followerwonk, BuzzSumo, Kred and Topsy to see the top influencers in your industry.
Some we recommend for B2B objectives include @leimer, @JimMarous, @gartner, @amerbanker, @forrester, @ABABankers, @JPNicols, @Celent_Research, @dmnews, @BankInnovation, @pymnts, @finovate and @NatlMortgagePro. For local PR, follow reporters, editors and producers that cover finance and banking in your local community.
Q: What are your favorite tools and platforms to connect with influencers?
A: Twitter is useful for some media but LinkedIn Groups are where you can really find key influencers.
Q: How should you leverage press releases on social?
A: Always promote press releases and articles on social media! And post to every social media outlet you have. For Twitter, post more than once (4-5 times) using different content from the release.
Also, be sure to favorite and retweet key people who share your news. Make sure your press releases are social media friendly, such as including Click to Tweets in your content. Last, make your headlines and subheads easily sharable – 140 characters or less.
Q:What kinds of information should you be sharing?
A: Content created by your institution, like press releases, media advisories, blogs, case studies, infographics, whitepapers, etc. You should also share content created by others, such as links to articles in local or industry publications. This also helps media increase exposure to their own articles – a win-win!
Q: How can financial institutions become thought leaders?
A: Write amazing content! If your bank or credit union has educational content, customers and members will respond. Remember, content is king.
Blogs are a great place to start, which can then be promoted through social media for greater visibility. To learn more on how to boost your PR with blogs, check out our post.
Q: If you could just do one action a day on social, what would it be?
A: Monitor everything. Be sure to know what is going on online.
Q: What things should you avoid or be wary of?
A: Always monitor your social media outlets. You have to be accountable for everything. Invest in social media monitoring tools to see what’s happening on all your social media outlets and respond effectively.
Financial institutions should also be familiar with the FFIEC’s risk management guidance for social media. It provides helpful guidelines related to governance structure, employee training, monitoring and reporting. Because of heightened regulations around social media, we recommend institutions have policies in place for staff. Our blog on 10 best practices when developing a social media policy can provide guidance.
Q: How should you calculate ROI on Social PR efforts? What metrics matter?
A: This depends on your business objectives. If your goal is to increase customer engagement, measure the number of new followers within a certain time-period. If your goal is to improve service, monitor and analyze the Tweets about your institution – are they positive or negative? Also monitor website visits as well as click through rates on your social media messages, and be sure to set a benchmark to measure from.
Social media is becoming increasingly important for helping organizations of all kinds – including financial institutions – achieve an even greater return on their public relations investment. Gone are the days where emailing a press release was sufficient. Today, social media channels like Twitter, LinkedIn and even Facebook provide an additional, cost-effective distribution channel to amplify the reach of content generated and coverage earned through your public relations efforts. You can’t ignore it.
For more information, feel free to visit our website at www.williammills.com or contact us directly. You can also read additional questions and insight on this topic by searching for #bankonsocial on Twitter.