Financial institutions seem to be keeping up well with consumer expectations for digital-minded business — at least on the customer-facing side of things.
In the American Bankers Association’s “Social Media in Banking 2019 Report,” 46% of banks surveyed agreed that social media will become the main avenue for communicating with customers within the next five years, and more institutions are creating mobile-friendly websites and apps for the 70% of Americans who use their smartphones to manage their bank accounts at least once a month.
When it comes to the back-end marketing infrastructure, however, banks are falling behind. Another study reported that the 34% of banks that use social media for marketing don’t use any advanced analytics to measure its impact. Marketing teams must overcome internal and compliance challenges to catch up with the digital curve, and that hurdle tends to leave many behind.
Fortunately, bank marketers can take small steps to make the benefits of a digital marketing strategy more obvious to decision makers. Focus on digitizing these processes first to show the most positive impact.
1. Approval Workflows
A proper approval process is a must-have for eliminating rogue social posts from employees, ensuring compliance in every post and reply, and keeping all online communication in line with the brand’s voice. But that’s a lot to handle, and manual processes leave too much potential for bottlenecks that slow down turnaround.
It’s time to stop chasing down email approvals and improve your team’s efficiency. Digitized approval workflows can make the most of a marketing team’s most important resource: time. A bank’s marketing team has a lot of responsibilities, and social can be particularly time-consuming, so tightening the process any way you can within compliance will allow you to focus on other priorities.
It will also make communication more efficient for today’s customers, who expect quick, efficient communication with their banks on social media. In fact, 37% of consumers expect a response in less than 30 minutes when they reach out on social, and more than half would stop engaging with a brand because of a bad online customer service experience. If manual processes are slowing down your bank’s approval workflow for replying to customers, it’s time to evolve to better meet their expectations.
2. Archiving for Compliance
Electronic communications regulations for banks mandate that every social post, comment, and response be archived. Failure to maintain a reasonable compliance program can be very costly. The SEC charged one financial entity $250,000 last year for retweeting client testimonials.
Some banks are meeting this requirement the old-fashioned way by literally printing out every social media post, comment, and response and archiving them into binders in order to keep their online activity audit-ready. This is unnecessarily time-consuming and not comprehensive enough to comply with up-to-date regulations. Digital archiving tools are a compliance team’s dream because they’re not only automated, but also extremely thorough.
3. Tracking Brand Mentions
Being able to quickly and compliantly connect with customers is an advantage to any bank, but it pays to also know what’s being said about the brand outside of those conversations. Tracking mentions of your brand on social can give you insights into how consumers are perceiving and responding to your brand’s voice and messaging, but tracking every mention is an impossible task for one person.
Digital tools for monitoring, tracking, and responding to brand mentions make this process easier. The right tracking tool can help banks keep a finger on the pulse of their respective markets, stay tuned in to customer feedback, and respond to it appropriately.
For the most part, banks have embraced the digital revolution — at least for their most customer-facing technologies. But many in the financial industry still lag when it comes to the back-end processes of marketing, which is where digitization can often have the greatest impact. If marketing teams digitize these three functions first, they’ll be better able to get bank leaders to invest in catching up.