There’s a time and a place for red tape and bureaucracy. But a burgeoning social media program is neither. Credit unions must learn not to get in the way of themselves while plotting their social media course… putting resources in motion, only to shift them in a different direction later can be exhausting and inefficient.
Creating a successful campaign or platform is a lot of work. But by avoiding these four common missteps, credit unions can ensure that their effort will eventually pay off.
The Company Profile Is Not Filled Out
Anytime a credit union starts a social media project, the absolute number-one priority is to fill out the company profile as completely as possible. Leave the profile blank or partially filled out and the page or account will not be made searchable to current and potential members. It’s very hard to be connected in a social network if no one can find anyone else.
Profiles Or Accounts Are Locked
This is never a good idea for institutions trying to reach the masses. The goal of social media to connect with people, not lock them out. Consumer who want to follow activity and outreach on a locked account will need to submit their information for approval and few will waste their precious time to jump though these hoops.
Lackluster Content Or Updates About Nothing
The core message of credit union outreach should contain stories about the institution, its values, its services, and all of the other good things happening with the brand. Adding personality to a social media stream is a good thing, but don’t let content get bogged down with too much personality (to the point of eroding trust) or odd/trivial items that may confuse the audience.
Persisting When The Audience Just Isn’t There
It’s hard to hear, but sometimes a certain strategy or channel just doesn’t work out. If a credit union has managed to avoid all of the social media landmines listed above but traffic numbers are still dead and the conversations have ceased, it may be time to come up with an exit strategy and pull the plug.
Thorough social media research, before and after a campaign, doesn’t happen nearly enough. But in the case of failure, it is a critical step in getting the next attempt right. Once a credit union finds its audience, it must take care of them and show constant appreciation for the attention and interest they’re bringing to the table.
The industry does some wonderful things, but too often, that information doesn’t make it out of credit union circles. It’s time to turn around from internal cheerleading and face the greater public at large with these messages. Credit unions must be bold and proud of what they do. There is a whole world out there waiting for financial help and, if correctly executed, social media can provide the perfect access point.
Michael Ogden will be presenting “Stop Missing the Mark with Social Media” at CUNA Mutual Group's free Online Discovery Conference on October 9. More information regarding the conference, including agenda, registration, and a tutorial video is available at www.cunamutual.com/discoveryonline/pr. You can also learn more about the conference by following @CUDiscovery on Twitter, or circling +CUNA Mutual Group on Google+.
CUNA Mutual Group insurance, retirement and investment products provide financial security and protection to credit unions and their members worldwide. With more than 75 years of true market commitment, CUNA Mutual Group’s vision is unwavering: To be a trusted business partner who delivers service excellence through customer-focused products and market-driven insight. More information on the company is available on the company’s website at www.cunamutual.com.
CUNA Mutual Group is the marketing name for CUNA Mutual Holding Company, a mutual insurance holding company, its subsidiaries and affiliates. Life, accident, health and annuity insurance products are issued by CMFG Life Insurance Company. Property and casualty insurance products are issued by CUMIS Insurance Society, Inc. Each insurer is solely responsible for the financial obligations under the policies and contracts it issues. Corporate headquarters are located in Madison, Wisconsin.