Dave Clarke, an award-winning editor and editorial director in the marketing departments of Fortune 500 companies such as Oracle and Symantec provides the following five tips to community bank social media usage as a guest blogger on Hubspot.com.
1. Understand that, while social media creates a virtual community, it takes real time to properly service and manage your social media. Time management is crucial. Create a strategy for what types of messages will be posted, by whom, and how often. Don’t limit your marketing to banking topics only. Keep the community front and center, too in your social media efforts.
2. Get your internal policy right. Make sure staff across the bank understand how social media works in a business setting and how that intersects with their professional responsibilities.
3. Read everything. Social media platforms are constantly evolving and changing. Just when you think you have a platform mastered, the technology, user demographics or even the jargon associated with those channels can shift.
4. A picture may be worth 1,000 words, but with banking regulations being what they are, the privacy policies guiding their posting (especially if they include customers) can be 10 times that. Work with your legal department to streamline the process to get photos posted in a timely manner. Photos of community bankers out in the community are one of the most valuable tools for conveying the bank’s commitment to the community at large.
5. Be sure executive management, IT, and marketing are all behind your social media efforts. Without any one of them, your social media campaign cannot succeed.
An additional resource for community banks is the 2008 (dated but still relevant!) Community Banker's Guide to Social Network Marketing as well as the Human Resources Guide to Social Media Risks.