Social media platforms are arguably the most accessible, least expensive way to generate greater outreach to current and potential account holders. With 42% of the world population (around 3.2 million) and over three-quarters of the Gen X and Millennial generations reporting regular social media use, it is no wonder so many businesses are flocking to social (Oberlo).
Despite the growing targeting capabilities offered by social media heavy hitters such as Facebook and YouTube, the sheer number of companies operating online can still make it challenging to gather dedicated followers. The key, however, seems to be a combination of culture and content.
Here are five social media brand building tips for your institution, inspired by “7-in-7” from The Financial Brand Forum 2019.
Clearly Define Your Audience
With so many users and so many targeting options, it is easy to flounder aimlessly in your outreach attempts. It is far more beneficial to clearly define your audience before fully engaging in a social campaign. Some of the top considerations for an audience build include:
- Spending habits
- Stage of Life
Let Your Audience Do the Talking
Talking about yourself activates the same brain receptors as food, drugs, and other self-gratifying behaviors (Psychology Today). Humans, both male and female, spend almost 40% of conversations speaking about themselves (Time).
Capitalize on the human desire for “all about me.” When building out your social media strategy, consider how to design your posts to get the ball rolling and start conversations.
- Ask questions
- Tag people in event and everyday photos (with permission, of course)
- Post a relevant article with a real introduction and ask for thoughts and opinions
- Shout out to new followers
- Get personal by congratulating your account holders on anniversaries, birthdays, and other life events
Video is a big hit online. It has become so popular that Google, Facebook, and other platforms are optimizing for it. YouTube, the top web video host, is also the fastest growing social media platform – even more popular than Instagram, Snapchat, or Facebook among younger generations (BusinessReport). 83% of social media users across the board respond positively to the use of video for brand interactions (Social Media Examiner).
There is a reason “social media influencer” has become a career. These individuals have dedicated their time and energy to communicating information and entertainment to cultivate a following online. In many cases, their followers have come to trust and rely upon their research and opinions as well.
Take advantage of this opportunity by researching who your target audience is following and reaching out to those influencers. Whether it be pulling them into conversations or a more robust relationship, the right person on social can help you build your following reasonably quickly.
Have Good, Clean Fun
Consumers are positive about brands that are responsive, join conversations, and talk about timely events. The like it when brands show their personality (Social Media Examiner). But while snarkiness may work for Wendy’s, being rude doesn’t usually fly.
There is no question that social media is the biggest thing going for marketers right now. But the cat is well out of the bag and competition for consumer attention is only continuing to grow. Fortunately, there are ways to leverage your financial institution’s knowledge and interactions with your account holders and community to keep people talking and, ultimately, raise engagement and awareness.